There are many ways to encourage your customers to continue to use your eComm store for future services depending on the products or services that you provide.
Of course, if your site sells rarely purchased items like a TV, then repeat business for this type of product from the same customers are only going to happen every so often, yet if you sell health products, graphic designs, or any service that may be required time and again, then you should think about putting all your effort into how your marketing plan tackles the subject of repeat purchases.
We can learn quite a lot by looking at websites and big brand names that are experts on how to encourage repeat sales. These firms have invested millions into research on the subject and so copying them is likely a good idea for your eComm sites.
Speaking of research, 61% of SMBs report that over half of sales made every year are down to repeat purchase while a loyal customer will be worth 10 times the amount of their first purchase.
Furthermore, just a 5% increase in the number of customers that make repeat purchases can rocket your revenue by 75%, which is partly because it is far less costly to have people repeat buy than advertise for new customers.
There are in fact tons of stats like this in the same place we got the ones just mentioned here at blog.fivestars.com!
Let’s have a look at some of the tactics used by famous companies to harness repeat sales…
Loyalty Reward Points
We can all learn a thing or two from Starbucks. Its loyalty rewards program has been so successful that the company has revamped it to make it even better. Why revamp something that already works? Well, if you are making money still, then why not try to grow that loyalty base by giving more away as, after all, we mentioned the stat above - a 5% increase in loyal customers can increase revenue by 75%!
How you design your eComm website’s loyalty program is up to you but take into account firms like Starbucks, online casino loyalty programs, credit card rewards points, and airline reward programs when you are doing your research.
Long Term Discount Deals
Now you could be a firm that offers monthly contracts to clients. However, have you ever thought about offering a discount for quarterly, 6-monthly, or 12-monthly contracts? Now for some firms, this is something they would turn down because it reduces revenue – why give them a discount when they are already paying monthly?
Well, there is some interesting research here. For starters, monthly clients cancel – especially if your firm is not delivering results or the customer suddenly becomes disgruntled. However, if there is still 2 months or even 4 months left on their contract, they cannot cancel. This gives you the opportunity to turn things around and get the next renewal.
Most companies that do use longer-term contracts tend to keep their customers for longer compared to firms on short term contracts. Strange but true. Of course, this does not work for all businesses. Internetprivatsphare is the perfect example of a software company that offers both short term and long-term contract deals. Its long-term deals offer discounts of up to 50% less compared to paying the monthly fee for the same period of time.
Sales and Promotions
The oldest trick in the book is a good old sale! Seasonal sales always work and as long as you are consistent with local markets your business targets, then people will know to come to your site during periods of national sales for discounts. However, what about additional sales?
Now you do not want to be one of these stores that has a permanent sales period because you could devalue your brand perception in terms of worth, but on the other hand, if it works, then by all means continue.
Albeit, there are ways to time your sales to perfection. One of the best tricks we have seen is eComm sites that enhance sales starting mid-November and into mid-December. It is a strange time to have a ‘Winter Sale’ or ‘Winter Discount’ period but it works for some businesses. People are already expecting sales after the festive period but not before.
Those early birds that see a good deal in a sale before Christmas will snap up your discount offers before the sale ends. Prices then go back to normal before Boxing Day sales kick in where you can offer heavier discounts in line with market competition.
Can Your Business Afford to Use These tactics?
OK, so some firms may not be able to use discount offers a sales technique because they are already operating in a competitive market.
However, loyalty rewards or buy 3 get 1 free offer could work if the profit margins work. It is better than no sales at all if you can make the same profit for selling 4 in a buy 3 get 1 free promotion as you would selling 1 but only if you are encouraging people that probably would not buy from you in the first place to suddenly make a purchase decision.
This is where targeted promotions could come in handy. Look for customers that have not purchased for a while and turn them back into regular buyers with deals such as the suggested 4 for the price of 3 deal. You can do this by using targeted email marketing campaigns or PMs on social media.
Although the suggestion we mention here are only suggestions and may not work for all businesses, the point to be made here is that you need to do is continually think outside box not only to gain new clients but to get existing ones to see your eComm store as their go-to online shop!