Does your business largely depend on your online presence? Well, this article interests you. Whether you have an ecommerce, a product catalog or a website where you show your services. Even if you sell products that are only bought once in a lifetime. I explain you 5 ways to create more lasting relationships with your customers through the Internet. This will bring you greater long-term benefits plus a terrible desire to say I’m the best at what’s mine!
Why it’s worth building long-term relationships on the Internet
It could be the title of an article about Tinder (app to find a partner or flirt). But it’s not, and your business comes from pearls. When you sell your products or services online the first thing you focus on is billing more and more. After all, it’s what determines whether your business sinks or goes from strength to strength. Right?
But if you just focus on making that first sale (collect and pass on to the next customer) you’re missing out on great opportunities. Surely you’re aware of the fact that it’s easier to get a customer to buy from you a second time than it is for a stranger to buy from you the first time. But you may not keep in mind that this also happens on the Internet.
So, in addition to trying to attract new visitors who become customers, you should strive to attract customers back to your website. It can be extremely beneficial.
Optimize your first contact
It is very common that when a visitor submits a contact form, they receive a confirmation email. Or they are redirected to a page where they are thanked for their message and confirmed that it has been sent correctly. If you have an ecommerce the first contact is usually the confirmation of purchase.
It is very common that this type of communication does not take care of anything. Practically you leave what comes by default. This can cause a very bad impression on your client because you do not treat them in a special way or give them the feeling that everything is going to be regular because you have not strived to go beyond the minimum necessary with your website.
Check your automatic emails and first communications. Make them useful and personal. Try to make them consistent with your way of communicating and with the image of your brand. Avoid standardized texts as they are very cold. Sometimes it is as simple as including a “Hello how are you?”, “Paul is looking at your email”, “give us 24h and we will answer you”.
You may also consider creating automated emails that arrive once your customer has received your product or service. A simple “How did it go?” can generate a lot of positive or constructive feedback. You will also be indicating that you care a lot about what your customer may think.
For me MailChimp is undoubtedly an excellent email marketing tool. It allows you to create all kinds of custom automations. There are other tools but for users starting in the world of automation MailChimp seems to me the most appropriate.
Follow your customers and bring them back
Bringing customers back to your website means reminding them once in a while that you’re there. Even if they think of you when they have a pressing need, it doesn’t cost anything to give them a little touch once in a while. You’d be surprised how much sales you’re losing by not doing this.
Email is not the only way to communicate with your customers. Look for opportunities to follow your customers with actions like:
- Social network publications that create a link: ask them to send you a tweet when your products arrive or photos in which they use them and then you upload them to your Instagram, and so on.
- Facebook advertising for existing customers (remarketing). This type of targeted advertising on Facebook is more affordable than other forms of advertising. Facebook’s advanced settings will allow you to create highly targeted campaigns that will only reach the customers you choose.
- Email marketing campaigns aimed at existing customers with a given behavior. For example, customers who have purchased a product with a 1 year warranty, 11 months later can receive an email offering to extend it at a reduced price.
Giving these little touches from time to time you’re going to be in their mind the moment they decide to buy a similar product or hire a service similar to yours. But don’t overdo it. Think about how often you should give these touches depending on the type of product or service you sell.
Reward old customers for bringing you new customers
Some businesses sell products that their customers ideally won’t need again. If it is your case you are equally interested that those clients think positively of you in case they finally need to buy from you a second time… or in case they know someone who is looking for your products.
For these situations think if you are interested in creating a referral program. This would allow your current customers to receive awards in exchange for recommending your company to new people. You’ll get new sales you wouldn’t have made.
Offer resources of interest
Another way to build a lasting relationship with your customers is to give them something that can help them.
You may think you’re already offering them your products or services. That’s right.
But for example, why be loyal to one company that sells t-shirts or another?
A T-shirt maker who knows what he’s doing is aware of the fact that his customers are actively looking for new ways to wear their T-shirts, new accessories or jeans that fit that type of T-shirt or color. So you’ll create a blog full of fashion tricks, tips and a style guide.
Even simple resources like free guides or tips can put you ahead of your competitors on the Internet. Think about what you can offer your customers that will help them enjoy your products more.
I’ll give you some examples:
- Blog articles with examples of use of your product or with the result of having contracted your service.
- Detailed guides or instruction manuals.
- Videos or audios with real, deep and human stories.
- Organization of events to know the novelties of your sector.
Listen for truth and answer
Your clients like to be kept in mind. They want their suggestions to be listened to, you to be interested in their ideas and values their feedback.
If you simply say “thank you” or “we appreciate your comments” you won’t get very far. Especially if the comment was made by a customer of yours in a very passionate way.
If your customers have great ideas, frequent problems or just a lot to say, you will have to validate this passion with an appropriate response.
These tips will help you take advantage of complaints, requests for help or product returns to create longer lasting relationships:
- Always always say “Thank you very much”. Your customer has taken the time to contact you. Even the shortest messages on social networks require your customer’s time. Always respond with gratitude and positively.
- Think carefully about your client’s needs before answering them. If a customer contacts you with a complaint, respond amablamente. If he has a defective product, can you send him another one just like it? And if not, can another product please him?
- Be clear about the next steps. Tell your customers exactly what you are going to do in response to their email. If someone gives you an idea that you can’t apply right now but you think might be useful later, let them know!
- If you need to improve your submission procedures to avoid a problem he or she has detected, let them know when and how you are going to improve that process.
- This kind of transparency will take you very, very far.
- Train your staff. If you have a person who responds to emails, tickets, tweets or comments, make sure they are trained on your products, services, policies, etc. And the most important thing: she knows how to take care of your customers. A customer is more likely to come back if a problem has been (1) solved and (2) with kindness.
Build long-term relationships with your customers to sell more
Let us not forget that the most important thing and the goal of all this is to earn more money. It’s what allows you to live and keep your business going. Interactions with your customers establish long-term relationships and this is the best way for your sales to grow consistently.
I hope these tricks will be useful for you to grow your business on the Internet. I choose a couple of them and put them into practice.