How to Improve Customer Retention
Guest writers Debbie Frakes and Stephen Clegg analyze the key measure of business success in this week’s blog post, “How to Improve Customer Retention.”
Customer retention is crucial for the success of every company. It describes the percentage of customers who purchased within the last 12 months who also purchased within the prior 12 months—13 to 24 months ago. Poor customer retention means that you aren’t keeping customers over the long term and people are not committed to working with you. The result is that you must devote resources continually toward acquiring new customers, taking up valuable time and money.
Maintaining strong customer retention is important for two primary reasons. The first is that it’s significantly more expensive to sell to a new customer than to an existing one. The second is that the longer a customer works with you, the more they buy from you and the more valuable they become to you.
The question is, how can you improve your customer retention?
Understand why customers leave you.
The primary reasons that customer will leave you are these:
- You’re mismanaging their expectations and not keeping them informed on the status of their orders.
- There is a change in contacts for either the customer or for you.
- Your employees aren’t adequately trained or knowledgeable about your products and services or they lack the information system support and tools required to be responsive.
Despite what you may think, price is not at the top of the list when it comes to reasons that customers leave your company to purchase from a competitor. Once you understand why people may stop working with you, you can take steps to prevent them from leaving to buy from competitors.
How Zintoro helps you retain more customers.
Zintoro provides the data and insights to recognize at risk customers, while our partner Winsby gives you the tools to significantly improve your customer retention.
Offer great customer service – In order to deliver top notch customer service, you must understand expectations and be responsive to questions and concerns. Zintoro uses Winsby Inc.’s customer satisfaction and benchmark survey programs to find out what your customers’ expectations are and to determine if there are any issues they are having. Your team can then act on this information and keep at risk customers from leaving you.
Provide a personalized customer experience – Our AI system tracks each of your customers to identify their next purchase, what industry, and market they are in, and whether they are at risk of being lost. Armed with that information, your sales team can personalize customer interactions and tailor offers and recommendations to meet their specific needs. Our partner Winsby will keep your master lists up to date with the correct contacts, phone numbers, and email addresses.
Develop strong relationships through consistent communication – Zintoro helps you contact and communicate with customers in several ways. First, you can use purchase history data to identify people who have not purchased in their usual time period, then reach out to ask about their needs. Second, you can distribute highly effective emails through Winsby. Customers who receive Winsby emails typically purchase two to three times more often than those who don’t. Third, Zintoro works with most CRM systems to integrate analytics data with your sales and marketing data, helping streamline customer communication.
Use customer feedback to take action – Implementing Winsby’s customer satisfaction surveys is a great first step, but you must actually act on the information and feedback you receive. Utilize the insights from the surveys to improve your sales process, products, and other aspects of your business before at-risk customers leave you.
Recognize the signs of at-risk customers – Zintoro tracks the frequency, consistency, and types of purchases, so you can know who your at-risk customers are. Your sales team can then use that information and reach out to those customers, ask about their needs, and even provide a special offer or other incentive to encourage them to stay with you.
Take steps now to improve your customer retention.
Increasing your retention rate is an ongoing process that should be started as soon as possible. Building lasting relationships with customers is crucial for the long-term viability of your company because it makes them more valuable to you and it takes fewer resources to sell to them. Zintoro gives you the information and tools required to retain customers and boost your sales.
Schedule a Zintoro demo to find out how to boost your customer retention, track, and accurately forecast business performance, and to determine the ROI for your marketing and customer satisfaction efforts.