The majority of businesses have a handful of really great customers. They’re the people who order regularly, pay on time and come back time and again. But are you being complacent? Do your best customers get the best treatment from your Dubai sales team? Or have you forgotten the basic rules for retaining customers?
Customer retention is one area of sales that is often overlooked in the rush to find new customers. New customers equal growth, right? Well not always. Treat your older customers well and your business will be healthier for it.
Some basic lessons in customer retention are:
Involve your customers
The more ambitious your new project, product, or service, the more testing you are going to have to do. Which is why it’s a good idea to select a small number of your older, more trusted customers and rope them into some beta testing.
This is a great way to show them how much you value their input into developing new stuff. You can invite them in at the early planning stages, or if that seems too soon, wait until when you feel you have something that’s ready to be tested in the environment you want to sell it in.
In the business to consumer market this is a well-established way of testing how a product is going to be received by the public. In the business-to-business community this type of feedback is invaluable – you will learn a lot about how your new product is going to be used in the real world.
Over-deliver on your promises
Customers who order from you without needing a call, or come in frequently to buy your products might not seem like they need much attention – but they are often the ones who need it most.
You’ve sold your product or services to them but do you know how they perceive that sale? Do they stay with you because it’s easier than going elsewhere? Very often this is the case. They’ve made an investment in you and don’t want the hassle of changing.
However, they could change and often do so out of the blue. The best way to retain a customer is to over deliver on their expectations. Go that extra mile for them. Find out how they are using your product or service and see if you can improve on how they use it. Maybe do an audit – are they paying more than a new customer? Is there an added benefit they’re not receiving because it came in after they became a customer?
If a customer feels like you are looking out for their best interests, they’re more likely to stick with you than go to a competitor.
Customer retention incentives for sales teams
Make customer retention part of your monthly sales team meetings. Don’t just give your team a bonus for new business: give them a bonus for retaining long standing customers.
Give your team the tools to identify who are the long term customers, what value they bring to the company and what you can do the help them stay as customers.
With the right thought processes in place and a good customer retention strategy, your company can grow more effectively and you wont see that dreaded marker of a high turn over of customers.
ISM have delivered corporate training in Sales, Marketing and Leadership in Dubai and the Gulf region for 15 years. We are proud that customers keep coming back to us but never take them for granted . Returning clients are highly valued and we reward them accordingly.The record so far by a single client stands at 11 public courses attended, a marvelous testament to our UK trainers,course standards and client confidence!