Customer retention is what decides the long-term growth and overall profitability of an e-commerce enterprise.
Acquiring new subscribers and prospects is one thing; making them stick with your brand for a long time is another. Personalization plays a significant role in this – and so do other advanced customer retention strategies.
Customer retention is centric to enhancing customer lifetime value. Some of its other benefits include;
- Reduces Acquisition Overheads: Acquiring a new customer is 5x costlier than retaining an existing customer and maximizing the value from them.
- Higher CLTV: There is only so much you can sell to a newly acquired customer. Existing customers trust your brand already – and retaining them boosts their lifetime purchase value.
- Drive Social Recommendations: It is your loyal customers that ultimately become your brand ambassadors. If their experience with your e-commerce brand is marvelous, they will spread the word about your business and draw-in new convinced customers.
But what are these advanced customer retention strategies? Let’s find out in this blog!
10 Advanced Customer Retention Strategies for E-commerce Businesses in 2021 and Beyond
1. Leverage the Power of SMS Marketing
SMS and text marketing are as old as cellular technology. Though, the straightforward, no-nonsense method of delivering text-based offers has always worked great with the end-users. The opening-rate for SMS campaigns is as high as 98% – yet barely 15% of the companies use it to onboard and retain more customers.
SMS is a powerful channel if employed correctly with the right technology. E.g., Wigzo’s Magic Link feature allows you to send promotional offers for new customers where they can subscribe to your brand in just two clicks! Moreover, you can send personalized engagements, upselling & cross-selling offers to your existing customers via Wigzo’s SMS broadcast.
Start leveraging SMS for your e-tail brand if you haven’t already.
2. Send Promotional Emails
Do you only send emails when a customer enquires, or do you engage with them over emails regularly? If the former is your mode of work, it is time to change things a little bit.
Your existing customers expect you to connect with them regarding any personalized offers, deals, and updates. Drive sales engagements by sending them time-limited deals and recommendations exclusive to their segment. Not only will you garner more sales, but a strong commitment from your customers to stick to your brand as they keep investing in it.
3. Use Marketing Automation
Hello, this is 2021! If your e-commerce operations are not progressing towards marketing automation, now would be a good time to do so. Automating your marketing processes can yield tons of value – especially in the personalization, timeliness, and experience aspects from the customers’ point-of-view.
AI-Based marketing automation tools like Wigzo allow e-tail brands to empower their omnichannel personalization strategy (Yes! Wigzo works with SMS, Email, Push notifications, personalized, on-site pop-up ‘nudges,’ WhatsApp, and inbox deliveries).
Time to align your customer experience, retention, and profitability goals within a single dashboard.
4. Customer Loyalty Program for the wins
Gamification is the next big thing in digital user-engagement and online design. Customer loyalty programs are just like that. You incentivize a customer to stick with you via discount coupons, freebies, exclusive membership benefits, etc. Moreover, if they purchase more and more from you, they move up buyers’ exclusive tiers to yield more value from your brand.
Ask your marketing team to develop a customer loyalty program and power your aspirations with a marketing automation tool. E.g., you can give exclusive 10% off on all future purchases if the customers sign-up for your ‘VIP Shopper’ program for a nominal fee. Do workout the numbers that agree with your finances.
It’ll work wonders!
5. Revamp Overall Customer Experience
The sound of it might seem overwhelming (it is not with a smart tool like Wigzo!). But, your revenue bottom line and customer satisfaction numbers will soar high.
Customer experience is now the beginning point of e-commerce failure or success. A poor CX leads enterprises nowhere. A great CX makes brands grow at an insane rate. To implement this, start by mapping all your customer touchpoints and fixing the experience issues sequentially. E.g., you can begin by optimizing your mobile site design. Then, say, you can shorten your transaction steps, allow faster shipping & returns, etc.
6. Deploy a Customer Referral Program
In recent months, customer referral programs have worked far too well for all-digital brands, from Gilt and Ztylus to Amazon and Flipkart. For e-commerce brands, a customer referral program can drive in hot leads that later convert into loyal customers.
Your customer referral program must aptly incentivize the referee and refer with sign-up bonuses, cashback, or discounts. Your referral program even has the potential to become a major channel for customer acquisition and retention!
7. Stand for a Worthy Cause
80 Percent of the investors are now making decisions based on community, environmental, and sustainability factors. What does that imply for your e-commerce brand? That the people do care about social causes.
People prefer to stick with businesses that match their values and beliefs. If your e-tail brand can attach itself with, say, environment-friendly products, or charity, or a socialist cause, you’ll retain more customers than ever. Mamaearth, a natural cosmetics brand for women & children, plants a tree every time you buy from them. Their brand leverages and markets this CSR activity and retains thousands of customers every year.
8. Provide more Customer Convenience
Let’s face it – convenience is something we all desire. Your customers are no different.
Suppose they can identify that your e-commerce brand takes away a load of making decisions (personalized product recommendations), payments (multiple options and option to save payment details), and communication (fast customer support, mobile-optimized website/app). In that case, you are already winning this race.
9. Customer Reviews Make it or Break it
Customer reviews are crucial to arriving at a purchase decision for most people. It is as simple as the difference between night and day – poor reviews garner no sales, and good reviews make products fly off the shelves.
Focus on collecting customer feedback and reviews after the purchase. For example, once a user purchases from you, you can call them one-by-one for verbal feedback and rating. You can also send them automated ‘Review’ emails to leave their comments for the product/service availed. These will become the core proof of your brand’s authenticity and product quality and compel customers to make faster purchase decisions.
10. Think Omnichannel Personalization
Companies with stronger omnichannel engagement methods boast an 89% customer retention rate vs. the paltry 33% of companies with weak omnichannel strategies have.
They also average a 7.5% year-over-year decrease in cost per contact compared to only 0.2% of those skipping the omnichannel strategy.
By collecting and analyzing your omnichannel data, you’ll be able to send customers personalized offers, targeted ads, and more relevant content based on where they are in your customer lifecycle. Again, AI-powered marketing automation tools like Wigzo can get your omnichannel plan flying in no time. You can try this for FREE now!
Understand that the foundation of stellar customer retention numbers is laid upon by a well-aligned omnichannel strategy, consistent & quality customer experience, and marketing automation. Take a hint from the above strategies and incorporate the one that works for your e-tail brand.
Until next time 🙂