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5 ways you’re hurting your business’s customer retention

March 22, 2017

While running a small business, it is understandable if you fall into a routine. Your business runs like a well-oiled machine – or so you may think. Although it is important that you find consistent techniques for conducting business, you may be doing your business a disservice by not reassessing certain areas of your business. Specifically, how different aspects of your business are affecting customer retention.

In this post, we’ll list five ways that you may be losing existing customers, and scaring away new ones. We’ll also provide customer retention strategies, so that you can focus on improving your business’s client experience.

1. Tacky branding – Your small business’s brand is the first impression that you’ll give to potential customers. So, make sure that it is an impressive one! If your branding isn’t compelling, first-time customers may not give your services or inventory a second chance.

To ensure that you don’t commit this faux pas, consider giving your business’s branding a makeover. This may be both online and at your business’s physical location. If you aren’t sure where to start, ask for feedback from customers. They may have insights that you haven’t thought of. Then, start implementing these changes. Maybe it is the signage outside of your business location, or the images featured on your website. Whatever they may be, we are confident that you’ll see an increase in customers!

2. Uncleanly location – If your business has a physical location that looks dingy, you can’t expect customers to keep visiting. There is no excuse for not maintaining your business’s appearance, and you should take pride in its upkeep. This may mean hiring a cleaning company, and repairing or replacing any decorations, operational equipment or furniture that are deteriorating. You may be surprised at how giving your business a makeover could increase customer retention!

3. Poor customer service from staff – The way in which your employees interact with customers will reflect badly upon your entire business. If your employees are disrespectful or dismissive towards patrons, you’ll likely see a decline in customer retention. Even worse – you may lose them to your competitors. According to the [24] 7 Customer Engagement Index, 47 percent of customers take their business to a competitor within one day of receiving poor customer service. This means, anytime you’re not providing stellar service you risk losing customers to your rivals!

To combat this, each employee should go through extensive customer service training, to guarantee that customers are given the highest level of assistance. In addition, if a customer complains about one of your employees, make sure to take these criticisms into consideration. If an employee is consistently receiving negative feedback, it may be time to evaluate their future at your business.

4. Slow customer service response – Just like rude customer service can alienate your clientele, so can delayed resolutions to their issues. You may be committing this mistake for a few reasons. Perhaps you don’t have an adequate amount of customer service representatives to serve buyer demand. Or maybe you haven’t invested in customer relationship management software that will organize your inquiries and make responding faster. Regardless, it is crucial that you determine a solution to your slow customer service. Even if it means investing in more employees or technological advances, you’ll likely receive more sales if your patrons have confidence in your customer service.

5. You’re offering overpriced products and services – Although you’ll want to make as many sales as possible, you can’t expect to overcharge customers and think they won’t notice. Ultimately, you’ll lose customers in the long run if they feel like you have unreasonable prices.

This is why you should offer customer loyalty programs. By giving customers the option to sign up for customer loyalty programs, they will feel like they are getting the most out of their money when shopping at your business. Plus, it could also translate into increased customer allegiance, as 81 percent of buyers are more likely to continue shopping with brands that provide loyalty program options.

Now that you’ve learned about these customer retention strategies, it’s time to stop making mistakes in these areas! By following best practices, you’ll be able to see your customer base grow, instead of decrease. Has your business made blunders that have pushed customers away? Let us know how you rebounded in the comment section below.

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