Love Island has once again took the UK public by storm this summer, dominating everyone’s news feeds and Twitter trends. Although little Gee has divided the nation on whether she actually is the loyal person she preaches about. By walking away from the £50,000 prize in order to be with Sam, she showed many people that sometimes, just sometimes, you are what you preach. She may not be walking away with her pockets deeper, but she got the prize she wanted.
What does Love Island have to do with Ecommerce? Well, there is a lot we can learn from little Gee and the new catch phrase from the summer, when it comes to thinking about retaining customers. While your website needs to be visually pleasing it also has to be seamless in its functionality, so it has the ability to reach new audiences whilst retaining previous customers. Shopify has introduced new features this summer so you can be more dynamic and get personal on your website. Allowing Shopify Experts to enhance your Ecommerce store and implementing functionalities such as dynamic personal product recommendations can massively improve your repeat customer rate. Loyalty should always get rewarded and businesses need to ensure it is part of their ongoing and long-term Ecommerce strategy.
Why rewarding loyalty is so important.
Statistics have shown that it is far more cost effective to keep current customers than it is to acquire new ones. Having a steady flow of new customers purchasing is, of course, essential, as it allows you to consistently grow. It is equally important, however, to ensure that you don’t have a high number of one time buyers. Customers that repeatedly buy from you gives you an opportunity for free promotion and marketing. Repeat buyers will often praise you through word of mouth and by leaving reviews which you can showcase on your site and across your social platforms. Don’t put all of your time and effort into grafting when you’ve already found your rainbow fish.
Have you ever bought a product and a week later, you see it’s on sale for half the price? Or when a company you have been following since 2008 runs a competition and a person who has only just started to follow them wins the £250 beauty bundle?
While it can’t be denied that we all love a bargain, many of us have at least one brand that we continually buy from, regardless of price. For instance, many companies have created their own cheaper version of Vaseline, however, many of us will still only buy the original because we believe in the quality of it and therefore are prepared to pay the extra. It’s a two-way relationship, we need them and let’s be honest, they need us. So, why shouldn’t brands treat us for being loyal?
Don’t get muggled.
There are always going to be brands that sell similar products to you and will have no problem with stepping on your toes to get to your customer base. While not every customer can be saved, it’s important to make sure that when it comes to being dumped, you have done everything you can to save yourself.
So, how do you do it?
Remember their birthday and always turn up to the party with a gift. This is a standard for most companies, so make sure it is your standard. All birthday messages from your brand should be personalised to that customer – no one wants to feel like their just another person on a list.
Give them a gift, it’s their day! This could be in the form of a discount code or a freebie of their choice, either way, it’s a nice personal touch and who doesn’t want an extra present?
Who is actually loyal?
Segment your consumers. Multiple email platforms allow you to separate your email subscribers based on various conditions, this needs to be your first port of call. Many businesses will focus on waking up their inactive subscribers and while this should be an important part of your strategy, many companies forget their VIP subscribers.
You need to treat customers who have bought multiple times from your store. It’s a nice gesture and where possible personalise the discount or tailor product recommendations to what they would be interested in. This small gesture helps build a rapport and trust between you and the customer, making them feel more important than just an order number.
Create a points system loyalty scheme for your consumers.
Implementing a points system is very effective and encourages consumers to keep coming back, especially as they know they are also benefiting from it. Loyalty schemes create a sense of belonging, your own community and those who join up should be treated like this, whether it’s building up points to take the weight off of christmas, or sending out exclusive sneak peeks. The maintenance of retaining this relationship will include sacrifice on your side, however the long term benefits really do weight out the cons and you will have lifetime customers, who will praise you through word of mouth to their friendship circles.
When you have a brick and mortar store, it is easy to spot those who are repeat customers and get to know them. The online world is a lot harder to make those relationships and build up a rapport.
It is important that you graft for new customers that come to your website, but it is equally important to maintain the older and more loyal bonds you have in place.