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Customer Retention: 7 Things to Do to Make a Good First Impression

MyOperator / Blog / Customer Retention: 7 Things to Do to Make a Good First Impression

When a first-time client comes to your business through referral, advertisement, or social media, they come with an expectation – especially if they have come via a referral. But things can quickly go sour from the actions or inactions of your business and cause you to lose your customer. 

This article will share ways that you can retain first-time clients, highlighting real-life examples to corroborate the points.  Below are 6 points and strategies to consider and apply when dealing with your customers or other businesses you work with.

What is customer retention?

Customer retention is your ability as a business/company to measure and maintain the loyalty of your customers and ensure they continue doing business with you in the future.  The main goal of customer retention is to evaluate things like customer satisfaction, repurchase behavior, customer engagement, and emotional ties to your brand. By analyzing these types of behavior, you as a company can apply the necessary strategies to ensure customer retention, some of which we will look at in this article.

7 things to do to make an excellent first impression

 1.Follow the due process, don’t be too quick to close the deal

If you’re a small business, you’re likely to be so excited about the prospect of a new client that you forget to follow your due process. But it’s essential to set your emotions aside and follow them. It’s the first way of making a good impression; it shows a certain level of highly encouraging professionalism.

How to follow your due process

Following the due process in the scenario where you’re trying to attract and retain loyal customers in the long term means proceeding or partaking in actions that don’t compromise the safety and ethical boundaries of your business and your customer’s well-being. There’s a procedure and way of doing things in every business or company regarding customer interaction, and that method is there for a reason. 

If you don’t follow proper procedures and jump the gun, it can lead to potential long-term customers getting scared off. For example, you’re a small business whose services may require your customers to divulge sensitive information or private information, and you don’t follow the necessary procedures and due process to protect data or information. It can lead to a very negative impression. Not only that but word of mouth will spread, which will then impact your business poorly in the long run.

2. Keep your word

Nothing can potentially spook a first-time client off more than a business that fails to keep its word. Do what you said you will do. For every promise kept, their trust in you is solidified. And maintaining trust is crucial for retaining customer loyalty.

Tips for keeping your word and solidifying trust

A crucial strategy when it comes to keeping your promises to customers is having a system that helps you micromanage and remember all your obligations. For example, setting reminders on your calendar when you have to send an email or call back a customer can ensure that nothing slips through the cracks and the client doesn’t feel neglected or forgotten. It will imbue the impression that you actually care about them as a client and that they’re not just another cheap and easy commodity for you as a business.

Another good example would be setting up an automatic email that’s sent to them when they make a transaction or do anything system related with your website in order to double-check and ensure that the transaction has gone through or that we’ve received their query and will 100% look into it. There’s nothing more frustrating than being kept in the dark about things. The more you keep your clients in the loop and the faster you are in doing so, the less anxious and irritated your clientele will be. 

3. Communicate setbacks early

Unexpected things are bound to happen, but the responsibility is on you to communicate that to the client with the right tools. Even if you’re waiting to receive information regarding the next steps, you should carry the client along. First-time clients want to know that their business is a priority to you. 

Ensuring effective communication with the client via email, phone, or other communication tools is essential. While it may be, at times, unpleasant to have to tell the customer that there have been setbacks, they could potentially get even more irritated and angry if you delay the bad news and don’t keep them in the loop.

4. Follow up on other employees in the value chain 

One employee is enough to give your business a bad name, which is why you should follow up on the employees in the value chain. This is important to ensure that every interaction with your business is pleasant and exceeds expectations. It is vital when running a business that you know what’s going on with every single employee and how they are behaving on the job.

How to effectively follow up on other employees 

Regular checkups with employees are essential to ensure that there aren’t any issues that might negatively impact your business. Performance meetings are an excellent way to evaluate how the team is doing and if their behavior drives away customers. In call centers, for example, conversations between customer support and customers are recorded and regularly listened to by supervisors to make sure they are communicating and managing customers properly. 

These conversations are regularly played back to the employee to explain where they can improve when speaking to customers. Your employees are essential to the face of your business, which is why they need to be properly trained and managed in order for there to be no mishaps that could potentially sour customers on your brand.

5. Deliver a good service or product 

Much more than making promises, you should deliver a good product or service. Everything falls and rises on the quality of your product. Ensuring consistency and paying attention to detail are the key to success for any long-running business. Similar to the previous point, monthly reports and evaluations on how everyone in the company is performing and how you can improve both as a team and the product you are trying to sell are essential for retaining your clientele and projecting a positive image of your brand.

6. Ensure there is ease-of-use of shopping and delivery 

In the modern world we live in, both consumer behavior and wants have changed and evolved. Your business must always be willing to adapt to the constant changes in the marketplace by providing the digital tools necessary for consumers to access your business. A functional, intuitive, and easy-to-use website or eCommerce platform is essential for selling your products and services on the digital marketplace. 

Having an antiquated and backward system and store can cause a multitude of frustrations for your customers. Countless website developers provide themes and templates for online stores that are all cutting-edge and will give your site and brand a very professional look and vibe. Plus, a good chunk of these templates and themes are also free. Not only does this provide ease for prospective clients, but it also shows your business as dynamic, inspiring loyalty. It’s also important not to be complacent and to regularly adapt and evolve your online store to the current trends and demands of the marketplace.

7. Give them the incentive to come to your business

Make your business unforgettable by giving the client an incentive. A good example is to give regular customers discounts for subsequent purchases, as well as unique seasonal bonuses, special discounts and gift cards to attract new customers as well. Another example would be a point-based loyalty system, where customers can accumulate points that are rewarded to them from all the continuous purchases they’ve made with the company and then redeem those points for discounts and other bonuses.

Regardless of what you’re offering to your customers, you should always ensure to surprise them with something extra spicy and exciting to make them keep coming back and spend more money on your product and services. Try to survey your audience and create an ideal buyer persona based on their responses to understand what would be best to focus on.

It is also highly recommended to monitor the Return on Investment (ROI) of your referral program, especially if you intend to offer incentives to encourage customers to refer others. By tracking the referral program ROI, you can determine the effectiveness of your strategy and make necessary adjustments to ensure that it continues to generate positive results.

Final thoughts

These are just some ideas and strategies that you can utilize to ensure customer retention. Hopefully, you can use them to improve your business in the long term. We’ve only just scratched the surface when it comes to customer retention. We’ve only just scratched the surface when it comes to this topic, as there are many studies and analyses on the topic online, and educating yourself even further would be a good investment for your brand.

Customer retention need not be a herculean task; the more you anticipate their needs and deliver on them, the more you’re likely to increase your customer retention and, subsequently, your profit margin.

About The Author
Radina Skorcheva
Radina Skorcheva is a Digital Marketing Specialist at Inbound Blogging, specializing in Content marketing and SEO. Radina is helping brands share their voices and scale their businesses through powerful digital marketing strategies.

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