Running any business can be tough especially when you’re working with hundreds if not thousands of customers. E-commerce businesses can be even more challenging due to the number of customers and customer service issues that could come up.
One of the most important aspects of an e-commerce business is to keep your customers coming back. It’s expensive to get the customer the first time and even more expensive if they don’t ever return.
By focusing on new customers coming into your business and also making sure you have repeat business you’ll see success. Think about the ROI on a customer that purchases just once compared to someone that comes back three times!
1. Email Follow-up
So when it comes to e-commerce in your customer retention strategy, email marketing will be one of your top ways to continue reaching out and following up with current and past customers.
You can use email marketing to send your customers updates, remind them of new events coming up, and most importantly, tell them about new services that you’re offering. Email follow up is a great way to connect with new customers, continue building relationships with them, and always keep them up to date.
Now you can set up a brand new lead follow up system using email marketing. This is a great way to onboard new customers coming into your business, so when the customer purchases something from your store, you’re able to welcome them, tell them more about your business, but most importantly, create a better relationship with them.
Albacross wrote a great article about how to nurture new leads and convert them into customers. This will be part of your onboarding sequence. Once that customer feels like they can reach out to you and they have a relationship with you via email, they’ll continue opening your emails on a consistent basis.
If you do it right, email marketing can be one of the most beneficial things for your e-commerce business. Not only can you follow up with new customers, but you can also reach out to past customers to tell them about new sales, new services, and ask them to come back or refer friends and family to your business.
2. Facebook Messenger Bots
Recently, e-commerce businesses have been using Facebook Messenger Bots to continue the relationship with the clients on Facebook. On average there is a 90% open rate on Facebook messenger, which is much more than email marketing.
But don’t treat it like email marketing, treat it differently like you’re speaking with that client on a more personal level. You can use things like emojis, shorter sentences and quick questions to get a response.
If you feel like you’re not sure or don’t know how to set up Facebook Messenger Bots, use a service like actioned.com, which is a productivity system. You can get your employees on track, get them to remember to follow up with anyone that joins your messenger list and continue that conversation on a personal level. Having real conversations with your clients is the ultimate customer retention strategy.
You can use services like Manychat or Chatfuel to start gathering new subscribers to your list so that you can follow up with them and most importantly know that your messages are getting opened.
3. Great Customer Support
Provide great customer support by providing great customer service to any new customer that comes into your e-commerce business. That customer will be much more likely to return as a repeat customer. They know that they can reach out and get their questions answered. They can ask about shipping or about new products coming in.
If you provide great customer support, you’re most likely going to get repeat customers. You can use systems like your Facebook messenger or provide same day replies using email. We recommend using a service like retentively to retain those customers and continue following up with them so they always come back to support your business.
On average, most businesses fail, but the ones that succeed, especially in the e-commerce space, offer upsells and other services to their clients. It’s hard enough getting a new client, but when you can only rely on one sale from that one client, you have to continue getting more clients to make up for the money you’re spending on marketing and advertising.
If you use upsells you can get three times revenue from one customer and you will not have to spend as much money on marketing and advertising knowing that you’ll get more revenue from one customer.
You can also provide extra services that support your first service or sale and provide products that support the first or second product the customer purchased. That’s when upsells will really benefit your business and you’ll see an increase in not only sign ups, but also sales.
We recommend setting up a survey form and ask your customers what other products they want or what services you could offer to benefit them more. Use this to come up with new products or services you can offer your customers now that you know what they want.
5. VIP lists (first to know)
V.I.P. lists and first to know lists is a marketing strategy to get your customers excited about your business, about new products coming in and about sales and discounts that are upcoming.
These lists are a great way to get people to join a second list. This list can be called “first to know” or the first to know list. As a business owner, you now know that these particular customers are going to purchase from you again, they’re going to open your emails and they’re going to click on your links.
These “first to know” customers are going to be your most loyal and they’re going to tell people about you so you can send out surveys, requests for referrals, and know that they’re always going to purchase more products.
You can use a contact form on a landing page to start gathering these new V.I.P. customers to join this new list. By providing this V.I.P. list, you’re going to have a following of customers that will support your business every step of the way.
The Key Takeaway
If you want to succeed as an e-commerce business, we highly recommend implementing these top five tips. Follow up and relationships are always key for any type of business, especially in e-commerce. If you can retain your customers, continue the relationship and easily access them with new messages going out, your business will succeed online.