Repeat customers: how to secure their business again and again

woman happy getting delivery

It’s no surprise that attracting repeat customers to your online store costs you less than finding new customers. But what you may not know is that on average, keeping existing customers can cost you seven times less than acquiring new customers according to a Salesforce study.

This is because repeat customers are easier to sell to. You don’t have to work as hard convincing them of the quality of your goods and services, they already know first-hand. If a customer has had a great experience with your company and they feel like they have gotten great value for their money, half your work is already done for you.

Not only do you save money on marketing and advertising costs, but when a customer loves your brand they act as an ambassador for your business, promoting your products or services to their network.

So now you know why you should be focusing on retaining existing customers, next we’ll show you how to do this.

5 strategies to secure repeat customers

  1. Create customer accounts
  2. Offer excellent customer service
  3. Reach out to your customers
  4. Create loyalty programs and rewards
  5. Add extra value

1. Create customer accounts

We’re all familiar with the guest checkout, you use it when you don’t feel like creating an account with a business. While it’s good to offer a guest checkout option, you should be aiming to get your customers creating an account so you can remarket to them via their email address (we’ll touch on this later). Not only this, but they won’t need to manually enter all of their details the next time they want to do business with you, leading to a better checkout experience.

For more information on delivering a great checkout experience, check out the benefits of our payment platform page here.

Another advantage for customers creating a customer account is that they can save items they’d like to purchase at a future date in their shopping cart or wish list, without having to search for them all over again.

Make sure you place the ‘create an account’ option first on your checkout page so it’s the first thing they see. Also encourage customers to create a customer account when they choose the guest checkout option. Asking them to save this information for next time with the information they’ve just used to make their purchase can be a backup option to capture their email addresses to use later on.

example create account form
An example of a create account form

2. Offer excellent customer support

Ideally your customer won’t need your support and will be able to self-service. However, if they do need it, making sure you’re providing them with the level of support they require goes a long way to securing their ongoing business.

Customers that don’t have the best experience with a brand to start with can still be turned into repeat customers by making sure you’re following up with them and addressing any concerns or problems they have with your goods and services.

Send them a follow up email asking how they’re finding their new goods or service. Either they’ll be happy and no further work is needed, or you can be proactive about fixing a problem rather than waiting for them to come to you.

Not only will they appreciate the effort you make in fixing whatever problem has occurred, but they’ll be more likely to come back to do business with you again.

3. Reach out to your customers

While no one likes to be bombarded with emails from companies they’ve bought from in the past, there is a time and place for reaching out to customers who have bought from you.

For example, maybe you’re having a sale, or have restocked a best-selling item they missed out on the first time they visited your site.

Even checking in to see if they have any feedback on your goods or service can also be a way to establish a positive association with your brand, as it positions you as a business who cares about the quality of their products or services.

Happy customers are the ones who’ll come back time and time again, after all.


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4. Create loyalty programs and rewards

People love a freebie, but that’s not to say you have to start offering your goods or services free of charge.

You could consider creating a points system, where customers accrue points with every purchase they make, to be redeemed when they hit a certain amount. Or offer time sensitive coupons for a buy one, get one half price offer.

And there’s also the good old birthday treat. Offering an extra 10% off or some other kind of incentive for their next order in their birthday month not only makes your customers feel valued, but gives them an incentive to check back in with your business and see if there’s any additional products or services they’d like.

The best loyalty program for your business will depend largely on the kind of goods and services you offer, so make sure you’re creating a program that will work for both you and your customers.

special offer example
A buy one get second half price offer

5. Add extra value

Invite your customers to interact with your brand and get them invested not only in your products or services, but your business too. You can do this in a number of ways.

For example, let them know about new product launches by giving them an exclusive sneak peek at what’s coming soon.

Create social media accounts and be responsive when customers approach you on them. Encourage your customers to share pictures and stories of the goods and services they’ve purchased.

You could also create some content to send out via email or to be hosted on your website. It could be an article on how to get the best value out of your new product, a customer success story, or some news you’re excited to share about your business.

Businesses that are friendly and approachable are more likely to create positive and ongoing relationships with their customers that will see them come back time and time again.

While all of these strategies might not suit your business offering, they can easily be adapted to be relevant for your products or service. Just remember to keep it positive and don’t be afraid to reach out to your customers!

Interested in more ways you can grow your business? See our ‘How to grow your online business guide’ here.