You now live in a time when rapid start-ups and intense competition are usual. As a result, client loyalty is quickly becoming the most important metric of your Shopify store success.
Making loyal consumers is even more crucial for today’s organizations because attracting a new customer can be five times more expensive than keeping an existing one.
Therefore, maintaining customer loyalty has the potential to boost your online sales and profit over time significantly. However, fostering loyalty is a lifelong process that necessitates deliberate efforts to increase your retention rate.
What is the concept of customer loyalty?
Customer loyalty is defined as a continuous preference for one company’s products and services over competitors. Customers that are loyal to a single provider are not easily influenced by price or availability. They would rather pay a higher price for the same high-quality service and product they are accustomed to.
Customer loyalty is earned when a company continuously meets and exceeds the expectations of its customers. According to a study by Rare Consulting, 83 percent of customers indicated their brand loyalty was based on trust. To put it another way, loyalty is defined by likability and the ability to trust a product or a brand. Customers who trust the companies with whom they do business are more inclined to buy from them again in the future.
What is the significance of customer loyalty?
Customer loyalty has an impact on practically every parameter that matters in running a firm. The business will not exist unless you have satisfied clients who continue to buy from you. New consumers are more expensive to recruit and spend less money than loyal, repeat customers. It’s important to a company’s success to keep customers coming back for more, which is why short-term profit grabs are ineffective. Customers loyal to you are better for business since they help you expand and maintain revenues high.
Stronger client loyalty aids business expansion
While it is self-evident that consumers who return to spend more money are beneficial to the firm, there are other, less obvious advantages to loyal customers.
It’s akin to the traditional metaphor of the leaky bucket. Consider a company as a bucket. Customers pour in, filling the bucket to the brim, and a thriving firm has a steady stream of clients.
Consider the case where the bucket has a hole in it. Customers who had been pouring into the bucket began to pour out the hole. Churn is the loss of customers, and it has a significant impact on corporate growth. Even if you can find a way to fill the bucket faster, you’ll still be losing consumers. Keeping more consumers in the bucket involves patching up the hole. A 5% increase in client retention boosts earnings by 25%-95%.
Churn would be less of an issue if it cost the same amount to replace clients lost due to the breach. Unfortunately, getting new clients into the bucket is far more expensive than selling to existing customers. Converting new clients is predicted to cost five times more than converting existing customers.
This means that companies with disloyal customers must devote greater resources to obtaining new clients. Loyal customers make it easier for firms to expand.
Finally, devoted clients spread the word to their relatives and friends. Consider the following statistics from Referral Sasquatch while deciding if referrals are indeed that significant to your financial line:
- New referral customers have a 16 percent higher lifetime value than non-referral customers. This is likely because they already have a favorable impression of the company. Friends are more likely to refer to “ideal customers” or those who will benefit from your product or service.
- A referral is the starting point for 84 percent of B2B decision-makers. Customers who are loyal to you can help you expand your lead stream.
- Compared to the rest, companies with organized referral programs have grown their income by 86 percent in the last two years.
- Consumers indicated they would suggest a firm they trusted 83% of the time. Trust will not only help you achieve repeat business, but it will also help you win new consumers.
Customer acquisition is expensive, as you presumably know, therefore organically building your customer base is always a plus.
It’s not only about keeping customers from leaving when you invest in corporate loyalty but also about making the most of the growth potential. When these loyalty effects are added together, it’s predicted that customer defection can stifle growth by 25% to 50%.
Customer loyalty equates to increased profits
To run a firm, revenue must exceed expenses. If converting a potential consumer to purchase costs $100, they must spend at least that much with your company for you to break even. Marketing spending, saving labor, and software costs are frequently included in the Customer Acquisition Cost. These expenses add up: According to Bain & Company, most organizations must keep customers for at least 12 to 18 months to break even on acquisition costs. Customer loyalty isn’t simply a good idea; it’s essential to the survival of any organization.
One of the best investments a company can make is to focus resources on developing client loyalty. A 2% improvement in customer retention affects profit as a 10% reduction in operational costs. Rather than spending less money on consumers, invest in keeping them. The benefits are well worth it!
Finally, the most profitable consumers have usually repeated customers. According to McKinsey, recurring e-commerce customers spend more than twice as much as new customers.
Customer Loyalty in Six Stages
The level of commitment each customer has to the company can also be used to gauge client loyalty. Customer loyalty is divided into six stages, each of which enhances the customer’s level of commitment. A consumer that buys from you again and again, for example, is more loyal than a customer who buys for the first time. A consumer who refers a friend is more loyal than buying and utilizing the product only once.
Customer life cycle’s 6 stages:
- Customers are aware of the company and what it has to offer.
- The customer has done some research and has visited a website, downloaded resources, and so on.
- The customer has purchased a product or service.
- The customer makes use of the service they paid for.
- Customer purchases from the company regularly.
- Customer refers friends or family members to the business.
Any company’s goal is to move a customer from stage one (awareness) through stage six (satisfaction) (repeat buyer and referrer).
A Quick Overview of eCommerce Loyalty Programs
Getting a new customer is difficult, and keeping them interested and returning is crucial to your business’s growth. According to statistics, a repeat consumer spends 67 percent more than a new one. However, how can you turn newbies into loyal customers?
First and foremost, offering a great client experience is self-evident. Great site design and UX, appealing writing, one-of-a-kind products, and a simple checkout process should all be there. What comes next? Many retailers use a loyalty program to reward their consumers.
Most of us are members of one or more customer loyalty programs, such as the grocery store key fobs or the phone number you give to a cashier at a department store so she can look you up and activate your discount. According to 2015 research, Americans currently have 3.3 billion loyalty program memberships, a 26 percent growth from 2013.
Loyalty programs have long been a brick-and-mortar (and airline!) institution, but they are now finding traction and success in the eCommerce world. They assist in developing consumer connections by stating, “Thank you, we appreciate your choosing us,” while also giving value. Transactional/Spend-based and Emotional loyalty programs are the most frequent models.
The loyalty that is earned through transactions
Through transactional loyalty, customers are encouraged to “pay $XX, get this stuff,” or “earn points or earn prizes that may be used for XX” through transactional loyalty. As customers add more to their carts or visit the site more frequently to complete their rewards, reaching the benefit level can boost sales. Coupons, rebates, free delivery, and other transaction-based rewards are also viable choices.
This concept can and does work, and it even becomes a game for customers as they try to reach that level or accumulate enough points to acquire their gifts. But, what is the result? Retailers may become trapped in a continuous cycle of giving away free products or discounts with no true loyalty other than the challenge of moving up the tiers.
The loyalty that is based on emotions
Emotional loyalty may strengthen connections and make them more valuable in the long run by encouraging customers to become brand ambassadors and rewarding them for their commitment. When a customer connects with and engage with your brand on your behalf, they become an advocate. Sharing their passion with friends and family creates social proof or the belief that “if they like it, it must be worth looking into.”
The emergence of social media has created a new and low-cost channel for emotional loyalty through social sharing – “Share this for free shipping!”
“Get x% off your next purchase if you refer a friend with this coupon.” which not only engages but also boosts your brand’s social media presence.
If you want to give it a shot, several customer loyalty applications can be readily linked to your shopping cart platform. Most offer price flexibility as well as the option to customize a program to meet your specific requirements.
It’s all about the customer experience and keeping them happy — offering extra value to your consumers will not only make them happy but will also keep them coming back.
9 tips to Boost eCommerce Customer Loyalty
Here are nine pointers to help you increase client loyalty and sales in your Shopify store. Let’s check out;
1. Exceed your expectations
Always meet your clients’ basic demands, and when you do, go above and above to surprise them. It can be accomplished by pre-delivering their purchase, providing freebies, including a surprise, or sending their order in lovely packaging – the idea is to keep giving more.
2. Demonstrate your gratitude
If you want your consumers to be loyal to you, you must be loyal to them as well. Determine your most ardent supporters and devote your resources to keeping them. Always keep in mind that satisfied clients will never switch to a competitor’s service. Give them loyalty cards, sneak peeks at new products, and premium services to show your appreciation.
3. Don’t become too comfortable
By soliciting consumer feedback, you can keep a constant eye on your offerings. Try to implement simple techniques to collect feedback (e.g. send a feedback form through WhatsApp along with the delivery mail). Contacting your clients also provides you with an excellent opportunity to provide special offers or services and inform them about new services or goods.
4. Prioritize on-time delivery
No matter how unique your products are or how attractive your discounts are, if you can’t get those items to your clients when they need them, all of your efforts may be for naught in keeping their attention. Nothing is worse than a customer’s dissatisfaction with your services; therefore, always follow your promises.
5. Give your customers something that they can’t get from your competition
In today’s competitive market, it’s critical to set yourself apart from your competitors and deliver fantastic value to your customers. Look for innovative ways to provide more value to your loyal clients and go above and beyond what you offer to your regular customers. Constantly stay one step ahead of the competition by providing something more valuable to your customers than discounts, features, or services.
6. Take responsibility for your errors
If you make an unintentional error, accepting it gracefully will help you regain your clients’ trust. A simple apology will go a long way toward restoring your clients’ faith in you. In addition, your mistakes can be turned into opportunities if you demonstrate a genuine willingness to grow and give excellent customer service.
7. Keep your clients up to date
Keep your consumers up to date on any variances, if any arise. If any things are not delivered when promised for any reason, take aggressive efforts to inform your customers about the problem and your solution. Your consumer will appreciate your responsible approach, which will increase the value of your service.
8. Showcase your most loyal consumers
Embed social media posts from your satisfied customers who have mentioned your service or product on their social media profiles. For example, share their story on your blog or social media to show them how much you appreciate their business. For example, to show your gratitude, repost their Instagram photo with a clever caption.
9. Multiple channels should be supported
Customers today want the freedom to order from any channel they want, whether in a store, over the phone, or online. Therefore, maintaining all multi-channels is critical, as is attempting to attract your clients through all accessible channels.
Investing in your most loyal consumers might pay off financially for your business. To enhance your relationship with your buyers and meet their expectations, make sure you employ all available platforms, such as digital and social media.
You can transform a one-time buyer into a recurring client and, eventually, your most prominent brand ambassador with the appropriate approach.
Best of luck!