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3 Reasons You’re Losing Customers –And What To Do About It

Written by: Kimberly Viera, Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.

 
Executive Contributor Kimberly Viera

Are you losing customers? If you’ve experienced a drop in numbers over the past few weeks or months, there’s no reason to panic. It’s probably just a change in the marketplace and your business needs to adapt.

Person sitting on brown wooden chair of restaurant

Don’t despair. Here are 3 reasons why you may be losing customers and what you can do about it.


Reason 1: You’re stuck in the sales funnel

Customers may be buying from the competition because you’re too focused on the sales funnel, not on the customer lifecycle.


Yes, sales funnels are important

Through your sales funnel, you bring in new leads and nurture and qualify them by making offers. As they move through the funnel, you direct them to your core offer. If done correctly, they will purchase from you.

But the customer lifecycle model is enduring


The sales funnel model is valuable, but today many businesses are using the customer lifecycle model. This model endures over time because it incorporates the entire journey a person takes with your brand, from initial awareness to purchase – and beyond. Compared to the sales funnel model, it focuses more on the post-purchase stage and long-term customer retention.

Companies using the lifecycle model create a customer journey map that details each phase a person goes through with their business. It gives you a big-picture view so that you can better understand this relationship and plan how to engage customers at each point. It employs a long-term approach.


Reason 2: Your customer service is so-so

Exceptional customer service generates sales. Everyone loves to buy from a company that treats them well.

However, just like the lifecycle journey, customer service should go beyond the purchase stage. People don’t stick around and buy more based on the strength of your products. If you’re not providing valuable support after they buy, you’ll lose customers.

How can you provide excellent customer service post-purchase? Here are a few ideas:


Establish a generous return policy

Offer a time-limited, money-back guarantee with free shipping if you offer products. Many businesses hesitate to do this, fearing that it will incur costs. But free returns are becoming the industry standard, so small businesses need to keep up.


Provide post-purchase implementation support

You can also offer support services to help customers use your products or services. This is especially valuable if you’re in a tech niche, where people frequently need assistance with installation, running programs, or troubleshooting problems.

Even if you don’t sell tech items or products and instead offer coaching or some other type of service, provide customer onboarding support through tutorials or webinars and help people get the most out of what you offer.


Stay in touch

Even simple things like thank-you emails and following up personally can make a huge difference. Work these into your regular customer interactions and you’ll see better retention rates.


Reason 3: You don’t know your customer stats

If you’re suddenly losing customers, there’s a good chance you’re not watching key metrics and stats. Here are four you should be on top of:


Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)

This is a statistic derived from taking the total you’ve spent on customer acquisition and dividing it by the number of customers acquired, and the amount of earnings from these efforts. Make sure you include all costs incurred, even indirect ones like travel expenses.


LTV ratio

The LTV ratio is the customer lifetime value. This is the total amount of revenue that you can expect from one account. You can calculate this by taking the average purchase and multiplying it by the average number of purchases. Then, determine the length of the customer lifespan and multiply.


Customer return rate

The customer return rate is the percentage of your customers who have purchased more than once from you during a certain period of time. It’s very easy to calculate. Take all of your customers and separate them by single-time purchasers vs. those who have purchased more than once.


Lost vs. Retained customers

You should also keep track of the ratio of customers you’ve lost vs. those you’ve retained. If you watch this metric, you’ll get an accurate idea of how your customer retention strategies are going and make any necessary changes.


Simple customer retention strategies that work

The three reasons and fixes above will help you make sure you’re keeping your customers.


Here are a few simple strategies you can also employ that will help. Choose a few of the strategies below that you can implement for customer retention.

  • Set realistic expectations. Don’t overpromise on what your products and services can do. Try to understand the benefits from a user’s point of view so you can accurately convey this. In fact, if you set expectations slightly low, you can overdeliver, which will result in better customer satisfaction and retention.

  • Surprise gifts and discounts. Sometimes, for no reason at all, offer loyal customers a surprise gift or discount with no strings attached. You’ll not only add value but also delight them with the surprise. When a brand does this, its customers love them for it. Prepare some things you can give away for free or very cheaply and offer these surprises regularly.

  • Offer multiple channels of communication. At a bare minimum, you should have a contact option on your website. Better yet, with responsive customer service representatives standing by. But it’s even better for the customer experience if you offer multiple ways they can reach you. Encourage people to contact you via Facebook Messenger or other chatting apps so they can reach you anytime anywhere.

  • Respond quickly. Response time to customer questions and issues is essential. When there is an issue, respond as soon as possible. Use chatbots or other automation to help so you can offer 24/7 customer support.

  • Gather customer feedback. If you want to keep customers buying from you, it’s essential that you know how you’re doing. Create multiple strategies to get continuous feedback from your customers. Allow them to give your opinion and offer suggestions on how to improve your products and services.

  • Pay attention to customer questions. One area of customer feedback that’s often overlooked is customer questions. When you get the same question repeatedly from different customers, this can be a clue to something you can improve. For example, if your customers are asking about something you feel is obvious in the ordering process, it’s probably not so obvious. Maybe you can change the process or supply the answer to improve the customer experience.

  • Personalize for your customers. Is there some way you can personalize the experience more for your customers? You can offer customization options for individual users, or find ways to personalize the experience for everyone, such as collecting data and segmenting.

  • Offer educational experiences. In addition to customer support for your products, create a whole library of resources teaching them how to get the most of your products. For an even better experience, create webinars and other live learning opportunities.

  • Create a loyalty program. Create a program that rewards customers who buy regularly from you. Make sure every customer knows about this program when they first purchase from you and understands how it works to benefit them.


How to turn things around


It’s never a good thing when you see sales declining but think of it as valuable feedback from your market, signaling that it’s time to make a change.


Listen closely, and your people will tell you exactly what you need to do. And remember, it’s never too late to turn things around.


Want more great ideas on building your business and delighting customers and clients? Come JoinTheEveolution.com


Follow me on Facebook and visit my website for more info!

Kimberly Viera Brainz Magazine
 

Kimberly Viera, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine

Kimberly Viera is on a mission to help every woman become financially independent and gain control over her life by starting an online business. As the founder of JoinTheEveolution, she helps women build transformational coaching and wellness businesses that earn them a sustainable living within a year while giving them the time and lifestyle freedom they've been dreaming of. Stop Letting Things Happen. Start Making Them Happen. Join the Evolution.

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