What is loyalty?
Just because someone keeps coming back for more does that make them loyal or just a repeat visitor? The two may be easily confused but there are differences. A repeat customer may choose to come to you because it is:
Effort to go elsewhere
Somewhere to go to while they look for a better alternative
A loyal customer will choose to use your business even if your competitor comes in and tries to win them away from you through aggressive marketing or extreme discounts. A loyal customer will always think of you as their preferred option. Loyalty is when they stand by you through thick and thin, when the customer will potentially exert the extra effort to use your business even when courted by others.
So how you can you build loyalty among your customers?
Treat your employees with respect-ultimately employees are your internal customers and if they are unmotivated or do not see the value of your business then this will be translated into how they treat your customers.
Understand why your customers use your business and how you can improve their perception of any weaknesses
Reward customers for choosing you-make your customers feel valued
Record and use information about customers’ likes and dislikes i.e. in a restaurant where they prefer to sit
Stay in touch-keep customers updated about what you are doing and any plans you may have. Maybe send them an email on their birthdays or other relevant occasions.
In our next blog we will discuss how you can measure the impact of customer loyalty for your business.