We all have our favorite brands, our go-to plumbers, our favorite restaurants. Finding something you like helps us make choices easier when there are so many options. As a local business your customers also have their own preferred option when it comes to the products or services that you provide – and there are likely many options to choose from.
If you want your business to be successful, you have to ensure that any new customer that you acquire becomes a loyal fan, a repeat customer. To do that, you need to make it as easy as possible for them to fall in love with your company and choose you as their favorite choice whenever they need your product or service.
A major part of creating loyal customers is to provide the best possible service while staying competitive with your pricing and innovative with your offerings. Customer service is a key aspect and you always want to be friendly and accommodating but there are also a few other areas that many businesses fail to address. Here are a few areas to pay attention to in order to create loyal customers:
Communication & Transparency
A term that you likely have heard ten-to-many times is transparency but it is important when running a business. Being honest and straightforward with your customers is one of the best ways to create repeat business. People want to do business with companies that they can trust.
Another major aspect is communication. Far too often, companies fail to adequately communicate with their customers which is a great way to drive AWAY business. If your customers have concerns, you need to address them promptly and compassionately.
Also, when it comes to communication, many businesses miss a great opportunity with online reviews and social media. You should always be watching out for any reviews that are left about your company or any social media mentions or comments that you can respond to. Whether it’s a poor or lackluster review, a comment or question on social media, make sure that you respond to it. This will help strengthen your brand image and increase repeat business.
Availability & Reachability
When you make a new customer happy with your product or services, they will likely want to come back to you in the future. That’s all good but what if they aren’t able to find you or reach you? Maybe you’re a service business that they found online the first time they contacted you for assistance, well if they aren’t able to find you the next time they need service, they will just go with someone else. Make sure they remember who you are and how to find you. Try giving out a business card or a custom magnet with your business information on it so they can easily find your contact information the next time they need your services.
You also want to make sure that you can be easily reached when they do call. A lot of small and local businesses have struggled to be successful because they did such a poor job of being reachable. They would have a phone number but half the time no one would answer and they would lose business or cause potential return customers to go elsewhere.
Try setting up call forwarding in case no one is able to answer the main phone and have it forward to a cell where you know you can always be reached. This will help increase trust with your customers and improve customer satisfaction.