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Superior customer service, implementing a loyalty program, implementing a referral program and listening and responding to what customers are saying are all ways of increasing customer loyalty. Building and maintaining a strong customer base is the key element to keeping a business profitable. Loyal customers not only patronize a business over and over again, but they also tend to recommend it to others, broadening the reach of the business and its ability to build up even more customer loyalty.
One of the key elements of increasing customer loyalty and keeping them coming back for more is to offer superior customer service. When businesses treat customers as if they are loyal and are there to serve their needs, whatever those needs may be, it creates a bond between the business and the customer. Typically, this is a bond that is very difficult to break.
Building this bond may be as simple as rewarding the customers that frequent a business. It can be a simple punch card, where each time the customer makes a purchase, the card gets punched. When the card fills up, the customer receives a free product or service. Instead of a free product, businesses can also reward customers by offering exclusive bonuses that regular, or less loyal customers, do not receive.
Increasing customer loyalty can also be accomplished by rolling out a customer referral program. Friends and family members tend to patronize the same businesses and use the same products and services. It is easy for a business to increase the number of customers they receive from a referral program and then reward the established customers that refer the new customers to the business, accomplishing two goals at the same time.
Listening and responding to customer needs and wants is another way a business can go about increasing customer loyalty. Customers tend to share with businesses what they want and need — be it a product or a service. When businesses listen to what customers are saying, they may be able to tweak an existing product or even create a new product or service that fits the needs of the customers.
The more products and services a business can get a customer to buy, the more this increases customer loyalty as well. For example, a bank is a very good example of this. A customer may come in to open a checking account. The banker then offers them a savings account. When the customer needs an auto or home loan, they at least check with the bank to see what their options are. The more tied in the customer is with the business, the higher their level of customer loyalty tends to be.