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The Essential Personalization Techniques to Retain Your Best Customers

Posted on Categories Ecommerce, Website PersonalizationTags , , , , ,

Marketing budgets often focus on acquisition – driving new traffic, and then getting new customers. But do you really know the future value of your current customers? Gartner statistics show that 80% of your future revenue will come from 20% of your existing customers.

Retention marketing, conversely, means focusing on making your current customers happy, so that they become not only repeat customers, but fans. It’s hardly surprising that 82% of businesses agree that retention strategies work out more cost effective in the long run.

So, how can you make your customers happy and engaged? It requires getting to know them and nurturing that relationship. You’ll need to know who they are, understand their likes, dislikes, and what makes them tick. Long gone are the days of generic marketing communications and blasting irrelevant messages – it’s time to personalize your marketing efforts.

Let’s run through some tips on how to retain your most valuable customers.

1. Segment your visitors

We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: you need to know your customers.

Analyze the plethora of data at your fingertips, and use it. This will allow you to segment customers according to characteristics which are relevant to your business. When considering retention, look at transactional and behavioral metrics such as their browsing history, average order value, and purchase history.

One example is to segment your visitors according to when they last converted. Customers can then be targeted in various ways based on how long ago they purchased. So, if a customer is approaching the end life of a previously purchased product, target that user for product replenishment – a helpful reminder of an item they might need to to re-buy. Or, try to re-engage a user who has been inactive for a while with personalized content related to products they like.

2. Find new ways to engage

The key to retention is keeping your customers engaged and interested in your brand and products.

Looking at previous browsing and buying behaviour, send your customers content and offers related to the products they love, and make sure they’re quick to know about new releases. Research has shown that for 78% of customers, offers and promotions are only effective when tied into how they have previously interacted with your brand. With this in mind, send targeted offers as a reward for purchasing from you, and add urgency techniques such as a countdown timers, to drive incremental purchases.

3. Get ready for their return

When your customers return to your site, a personalized experience should await them. This means engaging users with relevant content and personalized product recommendations as soon as they land on your site. Remind them of what they previously viewed on their last visit so they can easily start browsing again. Consider how the space on each page they visit is used, and split test to see what works. Here are some tips for your homepage.

4. Personalize emails

Email is not dead. In fact, it’s still a great channel to reach your customers, if it’s personalized. When it comes to re-engaging customers, segment customers by their last visit. A ‘we miss you’ email with a personalized message and recommendations is a great way to bring old customers back.

On your site, you should give visitors the option to have their abandoned carts saved and emailed to them – a great way to re-target customers later with a tailored abandoned cart email. Research repeatedly shows that personalized emails can seriously increase conversions over generic messages.

5. Reward your VIP customers

Your VIPs are your most valued customers, not only through their purchasing, but through their brand advocacy. However you choose to do this, the trick is to make these customers feel special, and behavioral targeting is one of the most effective means of doing this. 

Of course, targeted offers are effective, but consider other options, too. Remember your customers are bombarded with marketing messages and you’ll need to cut through the noise. So, be creative when thinking of other ways to reward customers. Previews of new product lines relevant to their preferences are a nice way to make shoppers feel valued. Other examples are invitations to events, free samples, free gifts or tutorials – whatever works best for your store and products. 

To sum up…

Retention marketing is sometimes overlooked. However, with the opportunities brought by personalization, it is easier than ever to effectively retain customers. Experiment – an effective personalization tool like Bunting will allow you to run multiple tests and see what works well. Get to know your buyers and then engage, target and reward . You might be surprised by the results.