Recurring customer interactions make your business far more valuable than one-off sales or even occasional repeat purchases. Beyond the sentimental joy we feel when taking care of a customer, the loyalty you build through routine interactions leads to a more stable, steady revenue flow through your company.
What Is Customer Loyalty and Why Does It Matter?
Customer loyalty indicates how likely it is for your customers to conduct business with you again. Loyalty is measured in a variety of ways across sectors. However, the simplest method is to examine the number and the size of transactions made by a customer over the course of their lifetime in your relationship. In business class, you might have heard this referred to as the “Lifetime Value of a Customer” — or LTV.
Across most kinds of businesses, customers who return typically spend up to 67% more than similar customers making their first purchase. Furthermore, the White House Office of Consumer Affairs reports that acquiring new customers costs six to seven times more than keeping existing ones. According to Harvard Business Review, boosting customer loyalty by just 5% can increase revenues by anywhere from 25% to 95%.
How To Build Customer Loyalty with User Experience
Every touchpoint in your relationship with a customer, a prospect, or an influencer reflects the quality of your user experience. Use these five methods to quickly audit and improve your UX—even if you think you’re already doing a good job, even a slight enhancement can lock in more of your customer relationships for life.
1. Gather Data and Feedback from Customers
You’re an expert in the work that you do, in the service you provide, or in the product that you sell. Don’t let that fool you into thinking you’re an expert at everything else that makes up a great customer relationship. Routinely, discreetly gathering precise customer feedback about their experiences can help you improve your processes and policies and customer retention.
You can get feedback from customers through:
- Surveys sent through email: Though it’s not a perfect solution, we’re fans of the NetPromoter System. When a customer makes a purchase or any other kind of transaction from your website, you can use tools like Medallia, Promoter, or Delighted to gather precise feedback. Measuring a consistent score (like NPS) can help you compare performance over time, while alerting you to critical issues that may have fallen through the cracks.
- Listening in on social media: People are more likely to share their opinions on social media than on your customer hotline, so you’re likely to get honest feedback by monitoring your brand name or other key phrases your customers use. The folks from Buffer keep a great list of social media monitoring tools you can try.
- Analyzing your website’s stats: Your site analytics can help you figure out what your clients want from your company before you reach out to them. Understanding your target market’s preferences and pain points will help you develop marketing techniques tailored to their demands. Watch for a bounce rate that’s creeping too high—it’s usually a sign of missed opportunities.
- Incorporating unobtrusive surveys into your website: We’re not fans of pop-up surveys. They often interrupt the task your customer’s trying to accomplish, and they often generate data from folks who may not even be the right fit for your business. However, you can build little checkpoints into your user interactions. A quick “temperature check” related to on-site search results or a shopping cart experience can offer distant early warnings of failure points in your customer journey.
2. Provide Ease of Use
As a website owner, consider the user experience’s “friction points.” These are the problematic areas of online interactions, where customers frequently become lost and frustrated before completing their checkout. Customers will return if you make their lives easier. Consider how you can improve the user experience by making it simpler or quicker. Customers will be able to get in and out faster if you streamline your checkout procedure.
For instance, Applebee’s recently improved its convenience factor. Customers no longer need to wait for their bill or credit card to be processed because the restaurant has digital checkouts at each table. Customers can now check out and leave from the convenience of their own table.
3. Reward Your Customers
Rewarding clients for their loyalty is one of the most effective methods to keep them returning. Create a customer loyalty program that rewards customers with gifts, discounts, and special offers. According to CrowdTwist’s research, 76% of women and 72% of men are more willing to shop at a company that provides a loyalty program.
Based on what you and your company find to be the most effective, this program might take on various forms. The following are a few examples of popular reward programs:
- Point program: Customers gain points for every purchase they make with your company. They can use their points to exchange for prizes or special deals.
- Spend program: This is similar to a point system, but it concentrates on the amount of cash a buyer spends with you during each purchase.
- Tiered program: This program enables you to assign several levels of rewards to customers based on their purchasing habits.
- Exclusive VIP program: Some businesses provide exclusive VIP programs to which customers can subscribe monthly or annually in exchange for special deals and perks.
Creating a reward program for your most loyal clients encourages them to stay and motivates other customers to want to achieve that level of loyalty.
4. Always Maintain Consistency
Cultivating a consistent tone and voice across your company’s messages is crucial for your brand’s strength and the customer’s experience. Customers should have the same experience with your brand each time they engage with it.
To minimize contradicting information that might mislead prospective customers, make sure to utilize precise terminology. Visual consistency is also vital for your brand. All devices and browsers should have the same design elements and logos. Remember that you might feel extremely familiar—or even burned out—with your branding elements. Your customers don’t look at them every day like you do, so you may need to run longer experiments or resist the urge to shake things up as often as you might like.
5. Be Responsive
Aside from being responsive to your customers’ needs, you should also use responsive site design. Responsive websites emerged to serve a particular necessity: with so many different screen sizes, a solution that provided the best possible user experience across all devices was needed.
With responsive design, an online store can be adjusted to the customer’s exact needs, regardless of how they reach the site. Rather than pinching and zooming whenever they visit your mobile website, customers can navigate with larger icons designed specifically for a mobile user experience.
Some UX (user experience) developers have better success creating specialized apps for brands than they would with a responsive site. However, responsive design is a fantastic choice for people who do not have the resources to invest in a completely tailored app and wish to serve all devices without stressing about compatibility.
The Bottom Line
The value of customer loyalty should not be underestimated in today’s corporate landscape. Building customer loyalty can help you increase sales, strengthen client relationships, and do a lot more.
Throughout this article, we’ve covered different ways to boost customer loyalty by providing positive experiences. Using these techniques will ensure that your shoppers have a marvelous and unforgettable experience. Making a good first impression will result in satisfied customers, excellent feedback about your business, and eventually, customer loyalty.