There are certain times of the year that e-commerce stores are buzzing with holiday energy. Famously, what is known as “Black Friday” and “Cyber Monday” are characterized by consumers looking for quick buys and killer deals. Many may dart on to a page and grab a sale without even remembering what e-commerce business they visited. How can you develop life-long customers from one-time seasonal shoppers?
There are several distinct steps that you can take to keep the energy alive with these valuable shoppers. Stand out from the crowd by utilizing these practical steps and watch the loyalty of new customers grow.
1) Establish An Email Connection
Be sure to obtain the holiday shopper’s email address within the first interaction. This paves the way for ongoing communication. Develop a specific strategy for maximizing your point of contact. You might consider a couple of quick survey questions that allow you to personalize your connection.
Consider creating an appreciation email sent a few days after the sale. The average open rate is about 42 percent. Knowledge of this low rate causes you to want to stand out virtually with a personal greeting. Your welcome email should give your initial shoppers the impression of being invited to an individualized “meet and greet” and tour of your business. This can be done with eye-catching graphics and high-energy video links. If possible, try to customize your welcome based on your initial survey questions you acquired during the first visit.
2) Cultivate the Communication
Once your communication has been established, continue you it with intention and variety. Consider these opportunities for cultivating a growing relationship:
● Share how your brand grows from and supports deeper issues, such as nourishing kids or protecting animals. Allow consumers to understand the value of identifying with your brand.
● Make sure that your content is personable and engaging. For example, for children’s clothing items, show a periodic article of the “Top Ten Cutest Things Kids Say,” or a fun collection of cat memes for cat enthusiasts.
● Link to blogs of interest or create your own content for your emails that help customers solve problems or increase engagement with your products. Look for ways that your product can fit into their routines or require customers to take action. Share related posts: health topics for workout equipment, recipes for cookware, educational research for teaching supplies, etc.
● Collect and share customers’ stories about personal experiences with their brands. Give testimonials that share human dimensions and reflect that you care about your customers and there to support them.
● Share helpful links, especially of other partners or customers. This will develop a community of common interest and support.
3) Exceed Customer Expectations
Surprise customers and go beyond their expectations. Don’t be like everyone else. Encourage them to feel like a member of your team or family.
● Consider going a step beyond your personalized welcome email to a handwritten thank you note if possible. In this technological age, the time and effort put into a personal expression of gratitude would speak volumes to your new customer.
● Offer a specialized discount or credit for a second look. Send a targeted, individualized invitation to buy again or consider other items.
● Check back in at optimum times. How is the product working? Are you having any issues? Communicate with your staff about common questions so that they will be prepared with responses.
● Do everything you can to be as fast and efficient as possible. This may include offering live chats, highlighting facts, or provide temporary support. Anticipate the issues and be there with solutions.
● Invite customers to engage on social media with a hashtag or tweet to show individual effort.
4) Understand the Value
Make it your mission to turn holiday shoppers into repeat customers. They will require less cash flow to maintain, purchase more on average, and develop a deeper connection with your business. This investment leads to word-of-mouth sales and an extended customer base. When you understand the value of your investment, you will do so with focused attention and energy.
5) Develop and Promote Loyalty Programs
Brainstorm ways to create loyalty programs that quickly identify your brand and mission. Establish a draw for identifying with your brand. Offer a discount, free gift, or product upgrade for additional visits and purchases. Aim for customer retention and a bonus or incentive for inviting others.
Don’t just be a turn-to in high volume, holiday times. By developing a targeted plan for retaining and developing your customer base, your visitor’s first purchase can be the beginning of a new and long-lasting relationship.