What Can Brands and Retailers Do After the Sale to Boost Loyalty and Retention?


November 5, 2020

 In a recent Harris Interactive poll, 70 percent of consumers said they would buy from a retailer again if they had a positive experience. With this in mind, it’s important to remember that the shopping experience is more than just browsing a site, filling a cart and hitting purchase. What can retailers and brands do to ensure that once an item is shipped and delivered, the shopper is inclined to come back for more? This begs the question of customer loyalty and retention, since attracting a new customer can cost five times as much as keeping an existing one. So, what are some tips for retaining customers?  


01. Get the Shipping Right: 

How a company handles the shipping of items can be crucial to its ability to retain and attract new customers. The first step to enjoying a new item is receiving it, after all. Be it through free shipping, reduced shipping rates, or additional shipping services and options, now more than ever online shoppers are tuned into the details. So what can you do? Talk to your customers. Ask them via phone or email what shipping service is most convenient and will best influence how they feel about a product once they’re finally opening it. 


02. Use Email to Engage & Educate: 

After loyalty programs and strong sales support, after-purchase personalized offers are one of the most popular factors in persuading customers to make repeat purchases. This can be done via post-purchase emails, and is especially beneficial if a customer has just made a purchase for the first time. It’s important to follow up with a welcome email and offer up some cross-sell suggestions to encourage their business in the future. Nike is doing this well, offering services including running apps, style guides and health monitors. 


03. Encourage Constant Communication: 

In the same vein as post-purchase emails, once a customer has received their package, consider sharing a satisfaction survey. Research from social-media service Hootsuite found that follow-up marketing often results in the cycling of customers back into the top of the sales funnel, thanks to a company’s ability to gather accurate feedback about a customer’s experience. While surveys don’t always paint a full picture, they do let customers know that you are genuinely interested in hearing from them. 


04. Leverage Social Media: 

Once a customer’s item is delivered, they’ll likely look to tell others how much they enjoy their new product. So, let customers know they can take to social media to share their thoughts, and have great customer service that can respond on the spot. And if the customer by chance doesn’t like their purchase, they can avoid the pain of making several phone calls by experiencing a more personal customer-brand interaction. We already know that one of the best times to engage with customers is right after they buy something, but it’s also key to engage once they receive their purchase, try it on and realize they love it (or don’t). Post-purchase engagement is a long-term commitment for retailers and brands, but it’s an important one. Let us know what approaches you’ve taken to garner customer loyalty and increase retention.