Keeping your existing customers happy is vital as a happy customer will refer new customers to you and generally its far easier to up-sell to your existing customers if they are a happy bunch.
Below are 10 tips for keeping your existing customers happy, loyal and your most effective advertising channel:
- Make sure you know how many competitors you are dealing with and what they are offering that might be of interest to your existing customers. You may need to add these features, services and/or price models into your own business to stay competitive.
- How big the market is for this product or service? Do you need to go more niche or offer more?
- The quality of your marketing and sales strategy is important in keeping existing customers as this should include an up-sell component.
- How you treat the customer’s questions or complaints after he makes the purchase is vital. If you provide great service your customers will talk about you.
- How easy you make it for him to reorder conveniently; i.e. a dedicated phone line for reorders or perhaps a website he can go to.
- Offering a reward of some kind for customers who have been with you for a while.
- Recognize your customers and remember things they have told you. Be aware of their interests and needs, and let them know about innovations that have come out that might interest them. Remind them that it is probably time to reorder, or perform maintenance services.
- Survey your customers once in a while to see what they think about your products, service, facility, and even the economic situation. It can give you amazing insight as to their needs.
- Encourage referrals by offering a small discount, rebate, or small gift. It not only brings in new customers, but also strengthens your own relationship with the repeating customer.
- Offer free instruction to make it easier for your customers to buy new products they are unfamiliar with.
It is important to review your files and observe who are the best customers, which ones have not returned, and the ones you used to count on that somehow have slipped away. You can get in touch with them just to notify them of a special sale, a change in hours, to say happy birthday…but do not make it a sales pitch. You are just reminding them that you are still here and available to fill their needs and answer their questions.