Customer satisfaction is worthless. Customer loyalty is priceless. – Jeffery Gitome
Customer satisfaction is crucial to the success of any business. That’s been said for ages.
But today, customer satisfaction doesn’t necessarily guarantee profitability of your business and the repurchase on the part of the customers.
If you really want your business to do well in the long run, simply closing the sale for once isn’t enough.
According to the White House Office of Consumer Affairs, loyal customers on average are worth up to 10 times as much as their first purchase.
For this reason, the best way to become profitable is to have loyal customers who keep coming back to you for more. All you’ve got to do is make your customers fall in love with your business – no matter what business you’re putting yourself into.
Research suggests that acquiring a new customer can cost you seven times more than to retain an existing one. So how do we go about finding loyal customers in the real-time world of increasing competition? Simple – to have loyal customers, first be loyal to them.
Here are 3 things you can do to be loyal to your customers before expecting them to be loyal to your business.
1. Meet Customer Expectations
Customer expectations have a big role to play in affecting the repurchase decisions and customer loyalty. When the expectations of your customers aren’t met, they’re for sure going to rate their experience as less than satisfying. No customer is going to come back and buy from you again if you fail to deliver a product or service that doesn’t live up to the standards you brag about. On the other hand, if you deliver something that exceeds customer expectations, you can have a great word of mouth marketing absolutely for free.
Here’s how you can find out who your customers are and what they exactly want.
Talk to them. Ask as many questions as you can. Use the power of social media to the fullest. And, most importantly – Listen. Yes, listen to what they tell you.
Keep in mind that what matters to you might not matter to them. So put yourself in the shoes of the customers and do whatever it takes to stay in touch with them.
2. Create Realistic Customer Interactions
To gain the trust of your customers, it’s a must today that you have realistic interactions with them. And by realistic interactions, I mean some healthy communications that can help you build trust with your customers. Now how do you do that? Well, first you make you customers aware of your business. Then, start the communication to let them understand you (and your business of course). This is where you need to act smart. You know the competition in the market has been growing by leaps and bounds. So if you want to stand out of all your rivals, you need to touch the hearts of your customers, and yet remain doozy at the same time.
One thing that you can do to separate yourself from your competitors – be yourself. You don’t have to stress yourself to be realistic once you are at ease with yourself. Don’t try to copy your competitors, just focus on creating valuable impact with your business.
3. Treat your customers like partners
Why do you think one has to treat customers like business partners? – Because this helps to build the trust like nothing else. I’m sure you wouldn’t ever afford to lose a customer’s trust, would you? As once its lost, it’s very hard to get it back. Building and maintaining trust with the customers isn’t a doddle. In everything you do, you’ve got to make sure your customers are a part of it.
The best way to do this is by asking your customers to provide you with the feedback all the time. And remember, customer feedback is to be taken very seriously. Once you implement the feedback and give credit to your customers for the changes, you’ll be adding the true value to your customer opinions. Don’t just limit yourself to a single channel. Give your customers a voice, wherever and whenever it’s needed.
So, the customer is always right, right? Do you think so? Think twice.
Well, here are 5 reasons why ‘the customer is always right’ is WRONG.
You know what? The saying is way too overrated. Customers, at times, are not only wrong, but are wide of the mark. And there’s no reason you should put up with it.
However, you must never let your customers get a clue about it. Act smart. Let your customers be right – in their own eyes.
Be open, be honest and be yourself. Seek feedback, be prepared for an instant action and communicate everything.