What is the best news a salesperson can get. As a small business owner whose primary function is bringing in new business my answer to that question is an order from a new customer closely followed by a reorder from an existing customer. At SWFL Marketing Group we serve organizations in the physical marketing space. This includes branded apparel, event collateral and signage, corporate gifts and consulting and delivering branded merchandise to support just about any campaigns our customers are planning.
Back to the answer to my question and how my answer brings a topic to mind that I want to share with others in business that could benefit from repeat customer orders. You may have heard that it is five times more expensive to get a new customer than retaining an existing customer. See more on what I saw on Google today here.
Acquiring a new customer can cost five times more than retaining an existing customer. Increasing customer retention by 5% can increase profits from 25-95%. The success rate of selling to a customer you already have is 60-70%, while the success rate of selling to a new customer is 5-20%.
My plan for my business, and I encourage readers to follow this process as well, is to improve/enhance the customer experience starting with the initial order and the continuing communication that follows.
Here is an outline of areas we look at and hope that it will be a useful tool for increased customer engagement and loyalty.
- Respond to a request for information promptly in the manner that it comes in- phone, text, email etc.
- If the inquiry is due to a referral thank the referring source quickly and if it results in business a consider a small gift if it is appropriate.
- Follow up the sending of information to confirm it was received and the next steps a prospect wishes the business to take.
- Introduce the prospect to your process as soon as it makes sense depending on the complexity of the buying process. There may be different departments or people involved from the initial inquiry to a discovery session to delivering a proposal, setting up an account, etc.
- Keep all customer information relating to messages sent, meeting discussion, customer expectations around pricing, delivery dates, quality, past experiences with prior vendors etc. in a place that is accessible by all that have the authority and the need to see it.
- Stay in touch during the process with appropriate useful to the prospect messages.
- When the order is placed stay in touch and update the new customer on the process prior to it happening.
- On or shortly after delivery confirm all is good as well as checking in on a future follow-up on a project that might come up or a date.
- Ask for a review or testimonial and an introduction to a new prospect that might benefit from your service as well.
- Stay in touch with useful information by email or physical mail or in person visits depending on what makes sense.
- Have a client appreciation party which may also help local businesses grow their network.
Of course, there is much more you can do but creating your own list may be a good place to start. Keeping the process professional and fun will go a long way to having your business have a steady flow of repeat and referral business.
Before, during, or after an online search we welcome an email or a call to our office at 239-437-4370, and we will jump on getting you the info you are looking for! Martin would also love to assist you with research! He can be reached directly by calling his cell, 239-316-9367 or emailing Martin@swflcreative.com!