How to get your customers to come back

Published: 10/05/2021

The key to success for many businesses, no matter how big or small, is recurring revenue and one of the best ways to get your hands on that is by turning single sales into repeat customers.

But how do you turn a first-time shopper into a loyal customer, we hear you cry? 

The most up-to-date research by courier giant UPS into the habits and expectations of online consumers has found empowering your customers is one of the most beneficial things a business can do to boost the chances they’ll be back for more.

The findings of their study can be split into three broad categories, empowering your customers with:

  1. Information
  2. Options
  3. A voice

In this article, we’ll break down exactly what each tactic entails and give you some examples you can put in practice today.

Information

In the technology-fueled age we’re living in it’s now easier than ever for consumers to do a bit of digging before they make a purchase, in fact, 81% of consumers browse the web before making a purchase either instore or online.

How can you use this information to turn consumers into repeat buyers?

Be transparent about price

No one likes to be hit with an unexpected cost they weren’t accounting for, so it’s unsurprising 89% of British shoppers admit they research pricing before buying, and this extends to the cost of postage and packaging too.

Is it clear how much your products or services will cost on your website? If not, you could be turning customers away without realising it. Be clear about:

  • The product/service cost
  • Postage and packaging cost
  • Any additional taxes.

The simple act of clearly displaying these costs will demonstrate to consumers that your business is open and honest, reputable and reliable from the get-go, and once you’ve elicited these feelings they’ll be much more likely to be back for more.

Returns

Over half of shoppers (54%) want to see a business’ returns policy before they’re willing to part with their hard-earned cash - so be sure yours is clearly outlined and easy to find on your website to up your chances of making the sale.

Furthermore, 72% admit the returns experience they have with a retailer will influence whether or not they decide to purchase from them again, so it’s supercritical you make yours as simple as possible for your customers. Think about:

  • Including a returns label in your packaging
  • Breaking down how they make a return on your website
  • Keeping language simple and barrier-free
  • Avoiding the use of any demanding language like ‘must’ and ‘required’ - these can be intimidating and could put a buyer off altogether. 

It’s all about fostering a feeling of trust in consumers so they feel confident buying from you, safe in the knowledge they won’t be left high and dry if something isn’t right. Nail it and you can be sure they’ll be back again and again...and again.

FAQs

Creating a frequently asked questions section on your website is a great way to provide consumers with a lot of the information they might seek.

During the stage in their buying journey where they research the market, an FAQ page is a straightforward tool to ensuring they get all the answers they need to make a purchase with you. Not only that but consumers like to see an FAQ page because it demonstrates a business cares about its customers and wants to make their experience seamless.

If you’re wondering what sort of questions to include, go back over any queries you’ve received in recent months or even years via email, contact forms, social and so on, and start there. If you’ve got a search function on your website make use of Google Analytics to discover what consumers have been looking for and include these in your FAQs.

Options

One of the big digital marketing trends of 2020 is personalisation, consumers don’t just like it but actively seek it out and spend more with businesses who offer them that personal touch.

There are loads of different ways you can offer your customers a custom experience with you, some as simple as offering a dark-mode option on your website. Here are two other effective ideas to get the ball rolling.

Delivery 

Thanks to the likes of Amazon many businesses now feel the need to keep up with super speedy delivery but actually, research suggests it’s not as important as you’d think.

For multi-billion dollar businesses offering cheap and super fast delivery is viable, but for smaller businesses, this often requires consumers to pay substantial delivery charges, and that can be a big no-no to shoppers who’d rather wait a little longer and pay less.

So, to keep them coming back for more be sure to include multiple options including a faster and more expensive delivery as well as a slower and more reasonably priced alternative. If you can offer a click and collect type service this is also likely to go down well too.

Payments

Consumers expect the payment process to be simple and convenient, and not allowing them to pay the way they want can be enough to turn them away altogether, so it’s all about offering options.

The most common way to accept payments on your website is via a payment gateway, so this is a good place to start. 

The use of mobile and digital wallets in online payments is on the up, now reported to be used in 55% of online transactions - these new methods allow consumers to pay without having their card in front of them, making them super easy and convenient.

So, if you’ve already got a payment gateway set up why not add a digital wallet option? It’s really straightforward and will allow you to offer your customers the convenience they crave while ensuring your payment systems don’t cost you a sale. 

Good to know: Our payment gateways can be configured with Masterpass Version 7.

A voice

Life as a small business owner is hectic, to say the least, and although adding another job to your to-do list might make you want to turn and run for the hills, finding the time to listen to your customers and respond is one of the most important elements to building loyalty.

Luckily, technology makes doing this easier than ever. Here are two ways to give your customers a voice.

Be available 

If a customer reaches out and contacts you, in today’s digital world they expect a prompt response and it’s super important you give them one.

Even if they’re contacting you with a complaint, if you can reply swiftly and with empathy and handle the complaint appropriately you can foster a happy feeling, turn a negative into a positive, and chances are they won’t write you off in the future. 

The good news is social media channels, instant messaging applications, and modern-day chatbots all make swift customer responses easier and cheaper than ever.

Ask for feedback

61% of consumers look for reviews before making a purchase and 85% believe reviews are as valuable in the decision-making process as personal recommendations, so if you can get your existing customers to write you one it could work wonders for your future sales.

Consumers like to feel valued, so by asking for their feedback you’ll be showing how important they are to you and fostering a feeling of loyalty which could pay dividends down the line.

Not only that but customer feedback makes identifying any potential hiccups in your customer experience simple to spot and easy to rectify. If you do notice a less than ideal review, be sure to respond to it and demonstrate you’re listening and learning. 

Summary

The findings from UPS’s online shopper survey point to consumer empowerment as the biggest factor in turning a first-time shopper into a repeat customer. You can empower your customers by giving them all the information they need, options to purchase, and a voice.

Repeat customers become loyal customers and these can be a potential goldmine to businesses - repeat loyal customers spend, on average, 67% more with businesses than first-time visitors, pretty impressive, right? If you’re wondering how to boost customer loyalty look no further than our comprehensive guide.

And if you want to offer your customers more options when it comes to payment you’re in the right place, whether it’s a payment gateway, Masterpass Version 7, phone payments, or otherwise, reach out to one of our friendly experts today. 

 

Bryony Pearce

Bryony Pearce

Copywriter

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