Customer Retention Strategies for Service and Repair Businesses
Attracting new customers isn’t rocket science. Spammers trick more than half of Americans into falling for fake offers every year.
But getting new customers and keeping customers requires two completely different strategies. Once you’ve attracted the attention of your audience, you need a solid customer retention plan in place.
Take a look at these tried and true customer retention strategies for service and repair businesses.
One of the easiest ways to entice new customers into returning to your business is to offer loyalty incentives. Loyalty cards are a common way retailers keep shoppers coming back.
Being in a repair or service field makes loyalty cards tricky, but not impossible.
Loyalty cards work by offering a deal or free item once the customer makes a certain number of purchases. For example, an ice cream shop might create a loyalty punch card where customers get a punch for each large cone.
Punch cards usually have a certain number of products you need to purchase before you receive a free product at the end. In the ice cream example, you’d likely receive a free ice cream cone after receiving a certain number of punches.
But in service and repair fields giving out the product doesn’t always make financial sense. In this case, your incentive might be a discount off the retail value or another prize entirely.
Be sure to choose something that’s of value to your customers. Just because an item makes financial sense doesn’t mean it’s attractive enough to keep customers coming back.
Consider creating tiers for customers based on their loyalty. For example, a customer who fulfills a punch card for service or repair might level up to a gold punch card that offers a bigger prize at the end. After the gold punch card, they can move up to platinum with an even higher quality item.
There should be no expiration date or limit to the number of loyalty cards customers can fulfill. The more you distribute, the more repeat business you receive.
Encourage customers to share with friends and family to grow your customer base exponentially using services like Tekmetric.com.
Good Customer Service
One easy and free way to encourage customer retention is good customer service. There’s no substitute for being an advocate for your customers.
Customers prefer brands they can trust that listen to their experiences. Research shows that they’re even willing to pay more for the product or service if they’re sure they’re getting a superior experience.
When customers are willing to overlook small inconveniences to wait for your product, you’ve reached the pinnacle of brand loyalty. Brand loyalists are the holy grail of customer retention.
They’re an audience you can depend on to return to your business year after year.
So, how do you generate brand loyalty? Treat your customers like gold.
Their thoughts, concerns and needs should be at the heart of your business model. Your employees should be trained in superior customer communication.
Train them with product tutorials, conflict resolution and industry trends so that they can respond to most client needs. Make returns seamless so there’s no haggling with the customer.
Over time, your customers won’t consider approaching a competitor because your brand provides all of their needs. They know that any concern or issue they might have with the product will always be resolved.
This earns you more open communication with your customers granting you superior feedback on how to keep customers happy.
Another path to brand loyalty is thought leadership. There are some brands that dominate the market because they actually have the best information, resources and materials for their products.
Customers won’t know your brand is superior until you prove it. Publish white paper studies and articles that show off your industry expertise. These white papers detail the how and why of your product or service.
Your thought leadership shows your business has a superior edge over customers. Customers assume that because you know more than others in your market, you create better products.
Aim to become a thought leader in your field to earn the trust and respect of your target market. Offer to speak on panels at industry conferences.
Support local professional organizations where you can attract top talent for your business. Service based businesses can use the quality of its staff as a marketing tool.
For example, your business might recruit strategists from the top MBA programs in the country. Your white papers can include bios of the authors as a way to demonstrate the strength of your brand voice.
Each time you showcase your top tier talent, it strengthens your marketing campaign by boosting the credibility of your brand.
Another way to improve customer retention is through referral incentives. Customer referrals are the fastest way to grow your market share.
You can encourage customers by offering them discounts or credits to your business. When they make a referral, you automatically get a return customer and a new customer.
As long as the offer is attractive, the customer won’t falter on redeeming the incentive. Avoid offers that are unrelated to the customer’s initial purchase.
The best offer allows the customer to return for the same product or an upgraded version.
Building Customer Retention
Customer retention won’t happen overnight. You need a tried and true marketing campaign for your service and repair business that tracks customer interests over time.
With great customer service, you’ll establish open communication with your target audience. This means learning about and responding to their needs in real-time.
Focus your efforts on building top notch customer experiences and the retention will follow. For more information and tips, visit our blog for updates.