The Value of Repeat Customers
Why Repeat Customers Are Worth Their Weight in Gold
Today’s digital marketplace can leave many marketers feeling like they have developed some serious adult ADD. The need to divide one’s focus between website content and structure, SEO, pay-per-click advertising, blogging, social media, and more to drive traffic to your store is hard indeed. This is often the reason some business marketing practices are not stressed enough.
Cultivating repeat customers is one such practice that tends to take a back seat, especially to tasks like generating traffic and new customers. However, doing so could cause serious harm to the health and vitality of your business. Repeat customers should be considered your most valuable target market.
Most Shoppers Do Not Buy on a First Visit
You may have the best product, great customer service, an inviting store atmosphere and good prices but that does not make your prospects willing to purchase during their first visits to your store. Don’t take it personally, though—it’s not really about you, it’s about them.
Today’s digital marketplace virtually begs for people to comparison shop. The ease of doing so in a matter of minutes online just makes this so. You should expect people to come to your store and even act like they are close to buying, but then leave so they verify that they are getting the best deal with you.
Prior Experience with You Changes Things
Research has proven that customers who have bought from you in the past are more likely to buy from you again. The profile of the customers with the highest rates of conversion includes some combination of the following:
- They know your brand.
- They search for your brand terms rather than for generic terms.
- They return to your store after an initial visit that did not result in a sale.
- They have purchased from you before.
Understanding this, if you put all of your time and energy into cultivating only brand new leads, you will be missing out on valuable sales.
Repeat Business is the Cornerstone of Long-Term Success
The rush of rapid growth can be achieved by furious efforts to secure new customer after new customer. However, this is rarely sustainable over the long haul, and can be likened to an all-out sprint pace that can be held over 100 or 200 yards but certainly not over the course of a marathon.
Rather, incremental growth year after year can be achieved by focusing on repeat customers and how to keep them coming back. You can consider this a means of fueling your endurance marketing to achieve the long-term payoff your business needs.
Smart businesses who want measured growth and are as concerned about tomorrow as today will make repeat customer solicitation a priority in their business and marketing plans. These are the companies that will outlast their competition.