Acquiring customers is tough. Getting them to stick around for days, months, and even years to come is another beast. That said, improving your customer loyalty should be at the top of your list of priorities. You maybe had a choice before COVID — because you likely had many more customers. Post-COVID, if you don’t take care of the customers you spent so much time and money converting — they may vanish before you know it. Here are five ways you can earn customer loyalty.
Your customer retention shows your company’s ability to retain people. The same goes for your employees. Employees won’t be giving your customers good service if you are not treating them right, too.
How you retain your customers shows the strength of your brand loyalty. You have to be able to manage customer data and provide comprehensive services. People want to be supported and that goes double (or triple) in a financial institution.
If you want to avoid losing your customers — use these 12 tips to earn customer loyalty.
Provide standout customer service.
Providing wonderful customer service sounds obvious, right? No question, good service is definitely a no brainer, but you’d be surprised how many companies fail to even provide an adequate level of customer service.
If your customers feel like their concerns are addressed in a timely manner, they’ll stick around even if your product or service has issues. Clients and customers want to feel like their voices are heard, and more importantly that they can provide feedback. And, of course, feedback needs to be acted upon in a timely manner.
A great strategy for young startups is to require every member of the company to answer support requests. Sure you can delegate the bulk of them to your dedicated support team, but everyone in your organization should answer a few.
In addition, you should offer your customers multiple channels to get in touch. Phone, email, social media, live chat, the more you can provide the better. Just remember, don’t set unrealistic expectations. If you say you’re available 24/7 you need to make sure you are.
Leverage public responses.
Over the years, social media has become an increasingly popular channel for customer support. Companies will use their twitter account to address customer concerns and collect feedback. The best thing about this is that your responses are public.
If your followers can see you go above and beyond to help your customers, you’ll surely keep them around. Hop on your social media and see what they are saying about you and your service.
Choose the right customer success team.
Your employees are an integral part of maintaining customer loyalty. When it comes to your customer success team, you need to be smart about who you choose. It takes a certain type of personality to handle customer complaints on a daily basis. Choose people who are patient and most importantly, someone who can remove their ego from the situation. A person who can remove their ego won’t take insults personally.
As the boss, you will need to understand that customer loyalty is mainly about positive emotional experiences with your customer base. You have to be consistent in your contact with your clients and customers.
You have to respond to your people. What goes through a customer’s mind if they are not contacted when there is a problem is, “Hey — no time for me? I bet you’d contact me if I was in your family.” And psychologically, this is a true statement. If your customers were a relative or friend — you would contact them back.
Your customer success team needs to think this way when forming a response. Think: this person is family — and give your client a break if they act up a little.
Be flexible with policies.
In business, it’s important to set and stick to your policies. However, it’s also important to be flexible at times. You have to remember every customer has their own circumstances and issues. Let’s say you have a strict 30-day return policy and a customer wasn’t able to meet the deadline due to “family issues.”
Sure you could stand firm or even question their excuse, or you can give them a break and let them return the item. Odds are, that customer will be shopping back at your store in the near future. The same goes for financial institutions.
Rack up the reviews
Nowadays, reviews are as important as they’ll ever be when it comes to winning over customers. In fact, research shows that 72 percent of consumers say that positive reviews make them trust a local business more. Use services like Yelp and Consumer Affairs to rack up some positive reviews for your business. Everyone — especially new clients and customers will check for reviews. Make sure your reviews are what they should be.
Don’t hesitate to reach out to your customer base from time to time and ask for a review. Showcase your positive reviews, and really spend the time to analyze your negative ones. The more you collect good interviews — the more you’ll know about how your customers feel about your products and services.
At the end of the day, customer loyalty isn’t won overnight. But, your frontline, customer success team is going to be in the trenches. Make sure they are good. That said, if you want to start building a strong and loyal customer base, make sure you use the five tips listed above.