This is a guest post by Michael Lazar of ReadyCloud – if you like the article, make sure to thank him in the comments!
Customers are the backbone of any ecommerce store, but loyal customers are the shining stars. They cost less to retain, and they are easier to sell to – not to mention that they’ll do some of your marketing for you via social media.
The biggest names in ecommerce right now are thriving because of their loyal customers. Amazon Prime, for example, has over 100 million subscribers, and Zappos does 75% of their business with repeat customers.
Have you ever wondered how these internet giants have captured and retained customers?
Surprisingly, their tactics are not as expensive and time-consuming as you might think. Even as a small WooCommerce e-tailer, you can provide a shopping experience that will keep your customers coming back.
And here are five ways to make it happen.
1) Introduce a CRM
Today’s customers want to feel like they are noticed by brands and have come to expect a personalized experience. After all, the retailer’s emails in their inboxes are full of products listed as “Recommended for You” and “You Might Like”.
With a CRM (Customer Relationship Management Software), you can cultivate the brand-consumer relationship with detailed profiles that will help you get to know your customers by tapping into their journey.
You’ll then know who to target in marketing campaigns and which customers to reach out to if they haven’t shopped on your WooCommerce store in awhile.
2) Offer Digital Coupons
Over 90% of shoppers actively search for deals when browsing online stores. It may seem counterintuitive to offer a discount to someone who has never shopped with you before, but that welcome coupon is likely to convert them into a new customer.
With 68% of consumers agreeing that digital coupons help generate brand loyalty. To cash in on this, you can take advantage of the different coupon sharing sites like Retail Me Not, Slick Deals and others. Make sure you share your promo codes on social media, and consider using an online coupon marketing service to spread the word.
More than 8 million US consumers redeemed a digital coupon last year, so stop missing out and start offering them.
3) Make it Easy to Buy
When was the last time you took a look at your store? By regularly “shopping” at your store and trying to navigate the site the way a consumer would, you can find ways to streamline the shopping process to optimize your store for more sales.
Whether this is by rearranging the layout, adding more product photos, or integrating a new payment processor, an easy experience will delight your customers and entice them to return.
Consider the example that Amazon sets. The way products are nested and paginated helps consumers find what they are looking for faster. A persistent shopping cart assures any products they’ve added will be there waiting for them when they come back, if they navigate away. And one-click shopping helps secure millions in added revenue by creating a sense of urgency for shoppers.
Take a page out of Amazon’s playbook and make sure your store offers a user experience that’s conducive to more sales.
4) Ship for Free
Free shipping is the new standard when it comes to ecommerce, thanks to the most popular brands and stores. In their new holiday report, RetailMeNot found that 61% of shoppers will not complete a purchase without first securing free shipping.
This is another suggestion that sounds like it will hurt your bottom line, but it is much easier to do than you might think. Free shipping can come with rules, such as purchase minimums or order-by dates, and you can build the cost into the item’s initial price.
With so many e-tailers offering free shipping in 2018, you can’t afford to ignore this trend. And it will pay off when customers return to your store ready to buy again.
5) Make Returns Easy
UPS reports that 81% of consumers desire easy returns. This makes sense – by sacrificing the in-person shopping experience, shoppers are taking the risk of buying without trying. But they won’t buy if they’re deterred by your return policy.
Consider this: over 60% of consumers read a return policy before making a buying decision and most won’t close the deal if returns are hard. By retooling your return policy and letting customers know that it’s easy to send products back if they have buyer’s remorse, you’ll benefit from increased sales and improved retention.
Better Loyalty Starts Here
Getting customers to buy once is always nice. But getting them to come back again for round two and more requires a specific approach. By using these five tips, you’ll gain the momentum with customers you’ve been looking for.