As the world economy expands, customers now have more choices where they can buy products and services which is why it’s important to focus on building customer loyalty from the beginning. Nowadays, satisfying a customer is just not enough, you must be able to do something unique that will make your customer to be loyal to you. Retaining customers requires building loyalty which not only includes customer satisfaction but also an emotional responses that will keep the customer to always come back for more. Although the cost of building customer loyalty less when compared to advertising or marketing a company’s product or service, it is the most challenging part of the business.
Building Customer Loyalty – What You Need to Know
1. Let your customers know what you are doing for them
You will only build customer loyalty when you let your customers know what you are doing for them. If you don’t tell them, then they will never know. For instance, if a customer has not received the product that he/she bought from your company may be due to shipment delays, you should make a phone call to explain to the customer what you are doing to ensure that he/she get the purchase.
Customers are always loyal to companies or businesses that care about them. Therefore if you show your customers that you really care about them and you have their best interest at heart, you won’t even know how they became loyal to you. This can only be achieved in you let your customers know what you are doing for them.
2. Build credibility
Credibility is very important when it comes to building customer loyalty. There are two easy ways of building credibility. First, do what you promised your customers . For instance, if you leave a message to call a customer back or if you make a commitment to follow up on certain issue, you need to ensure that you stand by your word. Even if you don’t have all the answers that the customer is looking for, just call back if you had promised.
The second way to build credibility is to take time to get the best answer. Sometimes you may not know the best response to a situation or request. When you are faced with such a scenario, ask for time to research and look for most accurate answer or information that you can obtain. Taking more time for accuracy can be more beneficial to your customer than a quick but incorrect reply.
3. Great customer service
Your customers will always come back to you if you provided or gave them great service that they have not experienced elsewhere. It is therefore very important to always try to go an extra mile so as to meet your customers’ needs and concerns. Remember that each customer has his/her own unique circumstance and individual needs .You must therefore be able to solve each customer needs uniquely and that can only be possible if you have flexible customer policies.
4. Understand your customer expectations
For most companies and businesses, understanding customer expectations is very difficult. You must know that customer desires and needs change with time. What is satisfying them now will probably not satisfy them in future. You will be able to build customer loyalty if you are able to evaluate and predict what your customer will want in future and work towards achieving it. You will only be able to do this if you communicate with your customers frequently and also by asking them directly what they want and what modification they would like see done on the product so as to make it better. You not only need to know what your customers want from your product and service but you also need to know how they want their product and service and what your competitor is doing or promising.
5. Open communication
Creating a database of your customers contact information and communicating with them on a regular basis can play a big role in building customer loyalty. It doesn’t always have to be a sales call, even a holiday greeting can go a long way in building customer loyalty. In addition, human communication has more positive effect and influence than automated communication such as use of email and recorded messages on customer hotline. Customer tend respond well when they know that they are talking to a real person and loyalty builds for every good experience that a customer has with your business.
6. Customer rewards
An incentive program for loyal customers will not only help to attract repeat sales, it also makes customers to know that you actually care and appreciate them. You don’t have to spend fortunes to show your customers that you actually care about them. Use your creativity to come up with interesting incentives that you can reward your customers with so as to show that you really value them.
7. Hold to your values
Credibility and transparency are very important values that customers look for in any business. You need to hold on to your values. If you make a mistake, admit and apologize instead of trying to cover it up. This will go a long way in building customer trust. Train your staff on company’s values and make policies based on them so that everyone working in the company operates with the same plan. You need to empower your employees so that they can be able to make decisions that will allow them turn a bad experience into a good one immediately. Don’t create many obstacles that can frustrate employees from being productive.
8. Exceed customer expectations
Once you know what your customers expect, you should always work towards exceeding their expectations. Customers like surprises and if you can able to surprise with new product and service, then they will stick with you. You also need to offer unique services that they have never experienced before. If you do that customers will always be looking forward to purchase from you because they know that you offer quality services that even exceed their expectations.
In conclusion, inspiring customer loyalty takes effort and well-designed process to get results. By following the tips provided above for building customer loyalty, you will be to build a strong customer loyalty and trust.