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How to turn a customer into a repeat customer

It's at least three times more expensive to attract a new customer than it is to keep a current one, making it important that you focus on encouraging repeat business if you want to succeed in your retail niche. There are many ways to encourage repeat business, and by incorporating these simple techniques into your marketing strategy, you can give customers reasons to come back through your door and make future purchases.

  1. Offer superior customer service. The most important thing that you can do to ensure that customers return to your store requires no monetary investment of any kind. Providing the absolute best customer service to every customer every time will go a long way toward building customer loyalty. Make customer service a focus that you discuss frequently in team meetings. Praise employees that provide exemplary service and take action to coach and discipline employees who fall short of service standards.
  1. Use targeted email marketing. POS software can help you to track customers' purchases and email addresses for use in targeted email marketing. Send follow-up emails offering discounts on similar items or complementary products. For example, you might send an email offering a discount on handbags to match a particular pair of shoes or notifying the customer of a special price on a new Bluetooth device that is compatible with a cell phone they purchased.
  1. Have private coupon sales. When customers arrive at the register to pay for a purchase, provide them with a coupon for a special private sale that will occur within the coming weeks. Offer them a set percentage off their entire purchase or off of new items that will be arriving at your store.
  1. Create engaging social media content. Social media marketing isn't just for online retailers. You can use social media to let your customers know of sales, new items and special promotions and give them a reason to stop into your store. Consider offering special discounts or offers just for those who follow or like you on social media. For example, you might provide a 20 percent off coupon for all of your social media fans.
  1. Introduce a loyalty or frequent shopper program. Loyalty and rewards programs can encourage repeat business by allowing customers to earn free items or special discounts by making multiple purchases. Customers love the satisfaction that comes with earning something free, which is why so many large chain retailers rely on customer loyalty programs.
  1. Stay on top of your competitors. Spend time every week shopping your competitors. Find out what they are doing to attract repeat business and then make sure you are offering something different or more attractive to your own customers. For example, if a competitor is having a 20 percent off coupon sale, schedule a 30 percent off sale that will run concurrently.

Investing in POS software and marketing geared toward existing customers is a smart strategy that can lead to high returns on investment. Make customer retention and encouraging repeat business top priorities and get every member of your sales associate team on board to ensure your success.