With the holiday season comes cheer, holly, and cold weather, but it also means that as a business owner, you’re preparing marketing materials to grab consumers’ attention during the holiday shopping season.
You have your loyal customers that continuously return and buy from you year after year, but how can you build loyalty with unsure, or even first-time, consumers during the busiest shopping time of the year?
Building customer loyalty starts with creating a relationship with potential or first-time consumers to your business. You need to establish yourself as a trustworthy, reliable supplier for their shopping needs. This is true for any time of the year and even more so for the holiday season. Consumers are bombarded by advertisements and sales during the holiday season, so it is important that you establish trust to gain their business and loyalty. So where do you begin?
Customer service is often the first impression consumers gain of your business. The holiday season usually brings an increase in questions, calls, emails, and, unfortunately, frustration. Therefore, it’s important that you, your staff, and your customer service team are prepared to answer their questions with a friendly face.
Most importantly, think before you answer. According to HubSpot, “transparency and honesty go a long way toward starting a relationship.” This leaves holiday consumers with a feeling of trust, and it allows you to improve your customer service skills for your consumers year-round, which is a necessity to build customer loyalty.
You know that busy shopping times bring more consumer questions and concerns. Start by evaluating your website’s frequently asked questions (FAQ) page. Consider the most common questions you receive about your business, products, and services, especially those related to holiday sales and specials, and add them to your FAQs. This will clear up some customer service time by helping consumers find answers to easier questions directly on your website.
You can also take advantage of the holiday season with your social media. Use social media to share tutorials and how-to videos, product upgrades and accessories, and information on your holiday sales. Use your blogs to draw consumers to your website. Consider writing about topics related to holiday shopping, such as tips for easier holiday shopping.
Building customer loyalty requires keeping in contact with consumers. To build trust, you need to remind consumers of their previous purchases with your business and show that you want them to have the best shopping experience possible. What’s the best way to do this? Email, email, email.
Follow up with consumers after their purchases and ask them for feedback on their shopping experience and products they’ve purchased. You can then add these consumers to your segmented email list, so you can keep in touch with future promotional emails.
You should also follow up with online shopping cart abandoners by sending them a reminder email to complete the check out process. 70 percent of online shoppers abandon their cart on the first visit to a website, but three-fourths of those want to eventually complete their purchase at a later time. By sending these consumers a reminder email, you establish a more personal relationship, which, in turn, may make them more likely to return for additional purchases.
The holiday season is a crucial time for building customer loyalty. It’s vital that you establish a connection with first-time consumers and reaffirm relations with current customers by providing a less stressful holiday shopping experience. Go the extra mile for consumers with customer service, give them the information they need to know, and remember to stay in touch. This will create trust and establish the beginning of a long, loyal relationship.