8 Ways Businesses Can Increase Their Repeat Customer Rate

by Corey Philip //  April 12, 2023

Making the first sale is always difficult but far from the most important. A big part of your profit line will come from old clients, not brand-new ones. Paying attention to the repeat customer rate is a must for that reason.

So, how can small businesses increase their repeat customer rate?

Small businesses can increase their repeat customers by building their brand, focusing on customer support, and caring for clients after the sale. Keeping in touch, such as using email lists and similar, is key to creating a connection between businesses and customers.

Do you want to increase your sales with little effort? You have to do very little to make money once your repeat customer rate is high enough. It takes time to get there, but the effort you'll make will be worth it. You can remove the trial-and-error process and learn the best ways to do it below.

Best Ways to Increase Repeat Customer Rate

Studies show a 5% increase in your repeat customer rate translates to 25 to 95% more profit long-term, making this seemingly-small area of business a big focus for you. Here's how you can keep customers coming back and your business growing in one swift blow.

Let's get started!

1. Create a Bond with Customers

Are you a no-name business from the middle of nowhere? Or are you a big brand that builds on having a great rapport with customers and clients?

The first will make one or two sales from different people, while the latter will have customers coming back for more every day.

How can you turn the first company into the second one? Build your brand! Create a persona for your business, engage with customers, and have clients fall in love with you.

2. Make an Emphasis on Customer Support

Have you called your bank lately or visited a branch lately? Chances are customer support was lacking. It's no surprise, considering most banks have a 75% retention rate. That means they don't have to do much to keep people coming back.

That doesn't mean you can do the same. You can take the most infuriating aspects of banks and turn them on their head. Great customer support translates into having more customers, and having humans (instead of chatbots) behind your help center will hook people from the start.

3. Ensure Users Have a Straightforward Experience

How long does your website take to load? You should make an effort to make it load as quickly as possible because users expect sites to load in three seconds or less.

In fact, you'll lose half your visitors if your website takes more than six seconds to load. Loading time is the first roadblock users have to overcome. You can also expect them to leave if they are but a few clicks from making a purchase. Design websites so straightforward even a 5-year-old can use them!

4. Encourage People to Make Another Purchase

What is a repeat customer? It's a customer that comes back for more. How can you get more of those beautiful clients that love your products? By making it easier for them to continue shopping with you.

There are different ways to make that happen. You can offer discounts, for example. The second product is 50% off, and the third purchase comes with 75% off. Design a loyalty program and give points for repeat purchases, and then allow customers to use these points to get discounts the next time they buy something.

The idea here is to encourage clients to come back. The way you do so should be in line with the products you sell, your profit margin, and the brand you build.

5. Care for your Clients after the Sale

Are sales a one-and-done process? Of course not! What would be the point of focusing on repeat customer rate otherwise? Showing that you care after you make money will make clients look at you differently.

A small thank-you note will take your brand a long way. You can also offer opt-in services that the competition doesn't offer.

Suzuki, for example, offers reliable, high-quality vehicles with the option to get a warranty you can transfer when you sell your car or motorcycle. That way, the company ensures a good product long after the sale.

6. Use Your Email (But do not Send too Many)

Email marketing will be close to becoming a 20-billion-dollar industry by 2027. Why is that? Because sending emails translates into making sales. You can profit from that activity too!

How can you make money sending emails? Start an email list. Offer a 5% discount if customers sign up to your list. Send weekly or monthly emails with interesting facts (that people will love to read) and opportunities, such as discounts and future sales (that will make people love to buy your products).

(Related article: 5 Email Marketing Strategies Local Businesses Can Use to Keep Customers Coming Back)

7. Put Rewards on Repeat

What's the main thing that keeps customers coming back? A good deal! You may have the best products on the market, but that will be of little use if your prices are too high or customers don't know about you.

How can you make customers pay attention to your business? Reward them for doing so! Encourage people to buy your products by giving away prizes when they engage with your brand. Use social media to do giveaways, your email list to offer discounts, and more.

8. Adapt and Change Overtime (But not too Often)

Building your brand is the first step, but that doesn't mean that it's the last piece of the puzzle. You'll have to shake things up every once in a while. Otherwise, customers will get bored and look for more attractive companies elsewhere.

Think about creating new marketing campaigns, cool ways to offer discounts, and more to keep customers coming back.

Final Thoughts

The best way small businesses have to increase their repeat customer rate is to build their brand, focus on customer support, and develop great aftersales strategies. A 5% retention rate increase means a 25% increase in sales minimum, so making an effort to improve this area of business is a must.

About the author

Corey Philip

Corey Philip is a small business owner / investor with a focus on home service businesses.

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