“It costs 5 times more to acquire new customers than it does to keep current ones.” Thus if you’re not committed to building your customer loyalty… You should be. Here are 5 simple steps you can follow to ensure that you are:

1. Build employee loyalty

For your employees to take care of your customers, you need to take care of your employees. Richard Branson once said, “My philosophy is, put your employees first, your customers second and your investors third and, in the end everyone will be happy.”

Successful companies not only have loyal customers, they also have loyal employees and keeping both satisfied should be numero uno on your priorities list.

2. Communication and contact are key

Dedicate time to maintaining a strong relationship with your customers. Whether it’s a phone call, newsletter, social media or a monthly flier, staying in touch and letting your customers know you’re there for them is crucial. Moreover, don’t forget to keep it personal and authentic; remember special occasions such as birthdays and anniversaries and that a little effort goes a long way.

3. Provide outstanding Customer Service

Great customer service means going that extra mile to meet your customer’s needs. Customers remember being treated well and positive previous experiences result in repeat business. As they say, customer service begins with a smile, so ensure you’re polite and pay attention to detail regarding complaints and concerns. Remember, this is your opportunity to resolve their issue and improve your business.

Furthermore, establish a clear and accessible way for your customers to communicate with you. Whether it’s via phone, email or in person, try to assure someone is assigned to customer service on a continuous basis. Remain positive, be a good listener and treat your customers with respect – the reputation of your company is at stake.

4. Reliability = reputability

Your company’s reputation is built upon the reliability of your products and service. The more reliable these are, the higher regarded you will be and the better your reputation will become.

Therefore, if you make a promise, stick to it. There is no point promising the world or next day delivery if you can’t honour it. Be honest, be open and be clear with your customers.

5. Reward loyalty

Actions speak louder than words and a proven rather than promised commitment will leave you streaks ahead of the competition. Over 50% of consumers increase their spending at a business that offers a loyalty rewards program and giving your customers something tangible will incentivize them to return in the near future. Through offering discount codes, vouchers and loyalty points, you are giving your customers a reason to come back and a chance to further strengthen your relationship with them.

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