• How Online Businesses Can Build Lasting Connections with Their Customers Feb 7, 2018
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    The aim of any Ecommerce business is to generate sales and drive the value of their conversion rates. True, but it is a little more than that. You also want customers to return to your site and repeat purchase.

    Many savvy online business managers achieve this by building lasting connections with their customers. At a time when the attention span of the average online consumer is pegged at eight seconds, you work is cut out for you. But it is not as difficult as it seems.

    In this post, we outline four ways you can build meaningful relationships and enjoy repeated sales from you online customer base.

    1. Grow your network- it’s the lifeline of your sales strategy

    Your network consists of business partners, professional colleagues, prospective and current customers, contractors, suppliers, partners, association members, family and friends. These connections are prospective customers waiting for you to meet their needs. How do you do that? By adding value to the relationship.

    Don’t make connections and ignore them until six months later when you have a new proposal. Keep your business at the top of prospects’ mind by sending regular emails, useful newsletters and other items of value. This way, you won’t be a stranger when you contact them with a new product.

    2. Communication is essential to sales

    Business relationships have a short life span. If you don’t stoke the flames, your customers will move on to an active competitor. Keep your online presence hot and let them know you are still available. Post frequent articles on your blog, get active on social media and send your loyal customers digital freebies from time to time.

    You rarely meet people at the exact moment you need something; the same goes for your customers. But when they need a product/service you provide, do they think of your business as the first point of call? Constant communication can make this happen.

    3. Set up an automated communication system

    The email is an acceptable and highly-effective form of business communication. Don’t underestimate the value of this service, because even on a shoestring budget, email marketing can connect you to thousands of existing and potential customers with a simple message.

    Ryan Howard, Director at XEDI says sometimes, an email automation system is enough to keep you at the top of your customers’ mind. “Companies that maintain systems such as automated order or feedback forms usually enjoy good connections with their customers,” he says. Each exchange is always an opportunity to strengthen that relationship.

    4. Reward your loyal customers

    We love freebies. According to Bain and Co., a management consulting firm, a 5% growth in customer retention can increase profit by 25% - 100%. Repeat customers spend about 67% more than new customers, and one effective way to ensure customers remain loyal is by rewarding them.

    Consider rewarding them with gift cards, movie tickets, white papers, or free download templates. Ensure it is something valuable or it will yield nothing positive. Happy customers tend to share their positive experiences with friends and colleagues, so you are assured of winning some new prospects in the process.

    Online connections are the same as offline communications. Once you grow cold, your customers will easily forget. Keep the relationship hot by creating relevant buzzes from time to time.
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