Retain Your Customers This Holiday Season

Angela Cheong
Nov. 8, 2012 by Angela Cheong

As the holiday season rolls around, retailers are scrambling to get their marketing act together and roll out the red carpet online to welcome season shoppers. Instead of acquiring new customers, econsultancy suggests 21 tips to retain customers instead. Here are some key statistics about customer retention all retailers should know:

– Customer attraction is 5 times more expensive than customer retention
– The average cost to a company when losing a customer is $243
– An existing customer is 60-70% more likely to buy from you than a new one (5-20%)

In view of these numbers, appealing to the current customer is far more rewarding than chasing after new prospects. While social media remains the sexy new toy of the digital marketer, it’s important to get the fundamentals right. Here’s a summary of some of the article’s salient points:

– Keep the customer informed at each stage of the delivery through email and mobile alerts. Basic, but often overlooked, this action builds trust. Without trust, your customers are going to skip off to your competitors’ Xmas sale.
– Did Tim buy an iPhone last month? Well, maybe he needs a screen protector and cover too! Take advantage of data that is already available to you and engage in behavior-based cross selling through email marketing.
– Everybody has a birthday. Everybody loves a discount. Use event triggered automated messaging to send customers personalized emails with offers to celebrate their special day.
– Here’s a no-brainer: Easy password or account retrieval. I can’t even remember the number of times I’ve given up on following through with a request for more information or a purchase, because I simply couldn’t recall my password. What with the mandatory inclusion of caps, special characters, numbers and the like, my password is more like a code I have to break than a gateway to my account. Being able to retrieve it quickly is simply a necessity.

The one similar thread underlining these points is putting into place a consolidated console that is able to:

(A) Handle multiple messaging streams from different operational lines at high volumes.
(B) Ensure low latency with transactional messaging.
(C) Trigger automated messages based on customer preferences and previous buying behavior

So before marketers even begin their (hopefully) highly personalized and targeted email blasts, perhaps it might be more prudent to ensure their current systems are able to deliver on the age old foundations of email marketing: reliability and speed.

Learn more about how you can use email alerts to drive engagement and conversion in the Transactional Messaging Best Practices eBook!

Transactional Messaging Best Practices

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