How you retain customers is one of the most powerful and essential systems for growing your business. It is way more expensive to acquire a new customer than it is to keep existing customers happy.
Speak to any small business owner and ask them where they get their business from and they will say “word of mouth” almost one hundred percent of the time. With stats that high, we can’t ignore those who are referring new business our way.
Happy customers will buy from you again and are most likely to tell others about the value your business provides. That’s why customer retention strategies are so important.
So, what’s the most effective way to retain customers? It’s all about building trust.
How to build trust with your customers
What you do daily, weekly, quarterly and yearly in the way of procedures, reports and other regular tasks creates predictability. Predictability reduces ambiguity and anxiety in both employees and customers. This creates a more stable and familiar company culture. People buy from companies they trust; stability helps develop that trust.
Great companies are built on a solid foundation of their reputation. This involves simple things—calling clients back, being honest one hundred percent of the time, who you associate with, what your company looks like, the way that you dress, and the way that you present yourself.
Using systems and processes, and making decisions on how you’re going to do things in advance, helps enhance and support your reputation. Having well-thought-out systems in place ensures you are consistently able to provide your highest level of service, which in turn builds incredible trust with those you serve.
Small actions and good intentions
Consider that clients are counting on our companies to provide the product or service they are looking for; when we deliver that well we are building trust. In turn, trust leads to referrals and the positive cycle of new business relationships continues.
Trust begins with us. Our actions, inactions, words and intentions. Strengthening trust can start happening immediately with small, consistent actions leading with good intentions.
Some easy but effective ways to strengthen your relationship with your clients are:
- Surprise and delight: send a birthday card or personally deliver a gift.
- Appreciate them: Call them when they give a referral and say thank you or invite them to events.
- Support and share: share information and give them referrals.
- Service: Answer your phone promptly and be transparent in your pricing.
We have a list of 22 different ways to delight your customers here if you’d like more ideas.
Happy customers, happy business
Focusing on how you retain customers in your business will lead to many things:
- Happier customers
- High-quality referrals and leads
- Long-term business relationships
- Stability and ease for you as a business owner
When you build trust with your clients your relationship will be a generous cycle of giving, from them to you and back again!
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Until next time, enjoy your entrepreneurial journey.