If you own an e-commerce store, you’ve probably made a lot of effort to acquire customers. This is why it can be disheartening when they don’t return. The solution is to work on your e-commerce customer retention. You can entice visitors back to your website by providing a positive user experience, improving personalization, offering incentives, and more.
In this article, we’ll look at the benefits of e-commerce customer retention. Then, we’ll explore five ways to increase your online store’s retention rate. Let’s get into it!
The Benefits of E-Commerce Customer Retention
Customer retention is the rate at which customers return to your brand over time. The higher your retention rate, the more consumers have stuck with your business. It’s a crucial metric for e-commerce, given the wide variety of choices that customers now have online:
Consumers who have developed brand loyalty are hugely valuable. Repeat customers spend an average of 33% or more per order. Meanwhile, improving customer retention by just 5% results in a minimum 25% increase in profit.
Customer retention comes at the far end of the sales journey, with customer acquisition right at the start. Acquiring new buyers instead of retaining existing ones costs your business more in marketing since you will need to explain everything you offer. By contrast, people already invested in your company understand your mission and offerings.
Fortunately, you can encourage customers to return by providing them with the best possible user experience. This encompasses many things, including the quality of your website, sales processes, packaging, delivery process, mobile site, and more. As we’ll explore in this article, a personal touch can also go a long way.
5 Ways to Increase E-Commerce Customer Retention
Now that you understand a little more about customer retention, you might be wondering how to keep consumers with your business after the first sale. Here are five methods!
1. Create a Mailing List
Email is still one of the most popular forms of online marketing. This is partly because the possibilities are endless.
You can send new customers a welcome email, for example. You can then follow this up with product highlights, news about sales, and soft sells containing brand information and updates. Additionally, you might take the opportunity to highlight other content on your website by sending a newsletter.
One particularly effective way of utilizing a mailing list is sending customers offers and rewards. For instance, 82% of people use digital coupons within a week, and 18% return to another brand they purchased from previously because of a coupon.
You could send coupons as part of a “we miss you” message, a holiday offer, or a birthday message. Discounts can also be great incentives for customers to sign up for your mailing list:
You can utilize the same tactics with SMS. Text messages have extremely high open rates and help you reach customers quickly and conveniently.
2. Utilize Social Media
Social media is designed to connect people, including your business and its customers. You can reach a diverse audience by creating a social media strategy encompassing various platforms. Then you can interact with your existing customer base and find new leads.
You should consider encouraging customers to follow your social media channels while they’re on your website, perhaps with pop-ups or incentives. It’s also essential that your social media feeds are active, visually appealing, and offer value:
You can encourage people to follow you by sharing relevant links to high-quality content. Posting links and images of products can entice customers back to your store, as can exclusive offers. You can also leverage user-generated content such as video reviews, hashtags, and customer photos with your products.
3. Offer a Rewards Program
A well-constructed loyalty program can be great for business. In this setup, you’ll offer incentives for a customer to take action.
While making a further purchase is the most common action in a loyalty program, you might also reward signing up to your mailing list or following your social media accounts. Incentives you could offer include exclusive discount coupons, free shipping, subscription services, or gifts:
Members of loyalty programs spend 12-18% more per year than other customers. Furthermore, 70% of consumersare more likely to recommend a brand if it has a good loyalty program. Therefore, offering real benefits to your customers can help retain them.
For instance, time-limited offers can instill a Fear Of Missing Out (FOMO) and prompt customers to purchase quickly. Alternatively, personalized discount coupons can make the shopper feel like they’re getting an exclusive bargain. Whether this is true or not doesn’t matter; it’s all about perception.
4. Personalize Your Customer Experience
Personalization is one of the keys to customer satisfaction. Many consumers don’t want to feel like just a number to your business; they wish to be appreciated.
You can make consumers feel valued with simple things such as using their names in emails. Emails containing personalized subject lines are 26% more likely to be opened.
Equally, you might consider using cookies to offer personalized suggestions on your website. This is something stores such as Amazon do very effectively:
To simplify the process of personalizing the customer experience, consider using a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tool to segment your audience. This software helps you track communications and nurture relationships with leads and buyers. You can filter your customers by various metrics, including interests, demographics, spending and location.
Finally, many e-commerce plugins, like Retainful, a WordPress plugin for WooCommerce, can send reminders to customers who have abandoned their carts. Again, personalizing these messages can go a long way toward enticing users back to your website.
5. Create Valuable Website Content
Finally, creating unique and high-quality content can retain your customers. Consumers who find value across your site will likely visit it more frequently and spend more time there.
You may achieve the best results by mixing promotional and informational content like blog posts, videos, and newsletters. Subjects you can talk about include guides to using your products, shopping lists, industry news, interviews, or features:
Blog content is also great for telling your brand story and exploring your values. You can talk about your corporate responsibility and offer advice and insights into the issues you care about as a company. This transparency can improve your reputation and build trust with your audience.
While it can be disheartening when buyers aren’t returning to your online store, you can take steps to improve your customer retention. Besides creating a positive user experience, you should consider offering a personalized touch and content that will keep users coming back to your website.
Do you have any questions about increasing e-commerce customer retention? Let us know in the comments section below!
Image credit: 200degrees
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