Building Customer Loyalty : A Quick Checklist
I know customer loyalty is important, how can I check that I have done all I can to build loyalty?
You're right customer loyalty is critical. People focus too much on new business when it's more profitable to focus on existing customers. Research shows that a 5% improvement in customer retention rates yield between 25%-100% increase in profits across a wide range of industries. Loyal customers buy more, more regularly and they frequently recommend your business to others. Here are a few pointers for increasing loyalty.
- Start with knowing who your customers really are. Research the needs of your customers. Then develop ongoing solutions or support that are highly valued by customers. This is the start of becoming "customer-centric".
- Build lasting relationships with your customers through effective two-way communication. Can your customers contact you easily? Make it easy for customers to complain and provide feedback. Also research why it is you're losing customers. Use this information to improve your business.
- Set high standards. Don't over promise and under deliver. Have you gone the extra mile recently for your customers? That is, surprised them? Delight your customer.
- Are you investing in training staff and keeping them motivated? Happy employees generate happy customers. Let customers know you value them and offer them rewards for their loyalty.
- Consistently delight your customer. There is no use being strong in one area and weak in another. Every customer contact point should contribute to an overall satisfying experience to create loyalty. Make sure you have quality control measures in place to ensure consistency.
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