Every good business director knows how important customer relationship management is. It’s all about focusing on customers’ wants, needs and experiences, and asking and answering difficult questions.
Developing an understanding between yourself and your customers enables you to gain more customers, benefit from more word of mouth referrals, develop a better brand image and improve your bottom line.
Listening to your customers’ wants and needs and tailoring your products and services to suit them is the fastest track to small and medium business success.
If the above isn’t enough to convince you that adapting yourself to your customers’ needs is key, here are some stats that might help.
Companies devoted to their customers’ experiences obtain up to 66% of their profits from repeat business.
On the other hand, companies who don’t focus on customer experience only obtain up to 22% of their profits from repeat business.
Many business owners tenaciously run their businesses in the way that they think is best, without adapting to the needs of potential and existing customers. This is the fastest track to losing customers…
Forrester Research (who run the Customer Experience Index) have conducted studies into what factors affect customers’ views of a company. Three key factors came to light:
- How much they enjoy the customer experience
- The ease of doing business with the company
- How well their needs are met
Implementing Effective Customer Retention
In spite of the wealth of evidence and experience that shows the true benefit of understanding your customers, many companies fail to implement a successful process of doing this.
CRM and ERP software can help increase customer satisfaction by keeping your business units streamlined. Additionally, these systems offer alerts and notification options.
These notifications are useful in two ways. Firstly, the system can notify your staff of customer activity and interactions that require attention. Secondly, the system can notify your customers of news, updates and information that might be relevant to them.
These integrated sales management systems enable businesses and customers to stay updated throughout the supply chain.
With the systems mentioned above, your company can monitor manufacturing processes, sales data and customer information. This gives managers the ability to assess ongoing activity in real-time and take quick action where necessary.
A good customer relationship management system will record lists of your top customers, new accounts, prospective customers and customer activities. You are given an insight into your customers and their activity so that you can make informed decisions on how to engage and retain them.
Staying Ahead of the Pack
Engaging with your customers is key to better relations and increased sales. Any company that doesn’t do this will notice a gradual decline in their profits over time.
Put simply, customers are not prepared to give their hard-earned money to a company giving them a poor experience. Customers have easy access to your competitors and those offering the same products. Your customers have a lot of choice, and if their experience with your company is negative, they will simply go elsewhere.
Capturing your customers’ loyalty early on with a positive experience is therefore of the utmost importance. Customers won’t think twice about going to your competitors if you haven’t given them a reason to stay.
The cost of attaining a new customer is far greater than retaining an existing one. Additionally, obtaining a new customer by word-of-mouth costs less than money spent on promoting your business. It’s therefore of vital importance that, once a customer is within your reach, you give them ample reasons to stay loyal to you.
Flowbird can assist you with the selection and implementation of a customer relationship management system that will enable you to nurture strong relationships with your customers. Contact us today to find out more about how we can help you with your customer retention strategies.