Are you spending more time on customer acquisition than customer retention?

If so, chances are you are missing out on valuable opportunities to make a sale and increase your profits.

Customers are the foundation to every business. Without buyers you have no business so therefore, keeping your customers satisfied is one of the most crucial steps to master.

It comes back to the old saying- “It costs more to acquire a new customer than to keep an existing one happy.”

On top of that, recent statistics show that an existing customer is 60-70 percent more likely to purchase from you whereas a new prospect is only 5-20 percent likely to purchase, proving the value of keeping your customers happy.

Instead of focusing all of your attention onto customer acquisition, why not focus your attention to keeping your existing customers happy and satisfied.

Keeping customers happy is not has hard as it sounds if you can create a rewarding customer experience from the very beginning to the very end of your sales funnel.

Happy customers are also more likely to share, comment, provide reviews and recommend you to their friends and family (and we all know how valuable word of marketing is).

Creating a positive customer experience starts with listening to what your customers want and finding out ways to deliver it that are effective and serve a greater purpose.

To do this, you have to collect market research and discover what your target audience truly wants and far too many companies overlook this stage.

Natalie MacNeil, from She Takes on the World states

“We invest heavily in customer support and happiness in a constant effort to bring response times down, and we have an open line of communication with each customer. In fact, it’s one of our biggest line items in the budget. People want to feel seen and heard more than almost anything else.”

Your customers want to feel valued, and the only way you can do this is by understanding what your audience wants at all stages through the process. While this does take some research, it doesn’t all have to be a neuroscience experiment. As MacNeil put it, customers simply want to be heard.

Ways that you can practically integrate this in to your online business is by offering email support, a customer care number, a customer support chat and fast responses to customer queries and questions. You can also ask them for feedback and study where they are dropping out of your sales funnel.

Building up a presence on social media and commenting back to your followers also helps your customers to know that you are there and invested in their interests. It may also provide clues as to what your customers are saying and what they are truly looking for.

This all comes back down to details. Customers really do notice the smaller details from replying to their comments and even sending a ‘Thank You for Purchasing’ email.

Amanda Genther, a product strategist reminds us-

“Communication is the name of the game. A lot of people think that you have to buy a gift from your clients in order to create an awesome client experience, but I think the biggest thing clients care about is how well they are being treated and how smooth the process is…not necessarily what they are getting.”

Sure, every one likes receiving a freebie but chances are what is going to make businesses and customers stick around is your quality of service and what type of experience you are offering.

Have you created a smooth and easy experience or has it been rough and tough?

Especially when it comes to online businesses there is so much competition, which is why sometimes making your service the easiest and smoothest of them all can help set you apart from the competition.

Another key factor to creating a smooth and easy customer experience is offering some personal touch that reminds your customers that they are valued and appreciated.

This could include sending a follow up email that is clearly personalised or even spending the time to make a follow up phone call. These strategies are time consuming, however going that extra mile will definitely help your customers to stay loyal.

As Dr. Michelle Mazur of Communication Rebel puts it-

“I make a point of remembering what is important to them and checking up on how it’s going. For instance, one of my clients was launching an app. I put the launch date in my calendar. The shortly after the launch, I sent him an email to see how it was going. He was thrilled that I remembered. His app was like his birthday.”

You can integrate this technique easily onto your online platform by providing your customers a gift card or discount on their birthday, or by simply following up after their purchase to see if they have any questions.

Customers that have been doing business with you for a long time should also definitely be rewarded. Customers love to be acknowledged for their loyalty so providing a discount or freebie for multiple purchases can also help keep satisfaction rates high.

Keeping customers happy is not rocket science, in fact it really comes down to some common values that we all look for in our own lives.

Customers want to be heard and listened to, they want their experience to be personal and they want to feel valued. It’s really pretty simple.