Resources Hub » Blog » 12 Effective Ecommerce Customer Retention Strategies

You put a lot of effort into acquiring new customers and now you want to focus on keeping them. You know that customer experience and value are important—you’re just not sure how you want to capitalize on that.

Customer retention strategies are one of the most effective ways to turn new customers into repeat customers.

By creating fresh opportunities for your customers, you can boost the value of each person who purchases from your ecommerce store.

What are the benefits of ecommerce customer retention strategies?

There are two components to growing your business: customer acquisition and customer retention. Finding new customers is a hurdle in itself, but ensuring those customers come back can be a challenge.

Ecommerce customer retention strategies help you create a solid plan for increasing customer value and they offer practical ways to nurture your sales funnel.

There are measurable benefits to creating an effective customer retention strategy:

  • Acquisition costs: it can cost up to five times more to acquire a new customer than to retain a current customer.
  • Lifetime value: by connecting with your customers emotionally, you can see customer lifetime values that are four times greater than without that personal touch.
  • User experience: a solid customer experience can keep up to 84% of customers from leaving over something as simple as returning a product.

To make the most of these benefits, you want to create a long-term plan for nurturing your ecommerce customers.

12 highly effective ecommerce customer retention strategies

Customer retention can have a significant impact on the value of your marketing plan. Use these effective strategies to craft an efficient customer retention solution.

1. Send email campaigns with promotional offers.

Your customers have already made an investment in your company. Promotional offers and discount codes are an investment you can make in your customers. The key is to make your customers feel like this is an exclusive offer.

 Email coupons and discount codes can encourage repeat conversions.

Source: Really Good Emails

Encourage your customers to act quickly by including an expiration date with the offer—82% of people will use their digital coupons within a week of receiving them.

2. Create an SMS marketing campaign.

It’s becoming more acceptable to use SMS marketing with customers who’ve opted in. Text messages have open rates as high as 98%, but less than 15% of companies use SMS marketing to connect with their customers. You can stay ahead of competitors by adopting this strategy.

With the right digital marketing tools, you can put together a text message campaign that drives customers to your website. Start by sending an email with an SMS shortcode and a discount.

3. Introduce a customer loyalty program.

Customer loyalty and reward programs are an effective customer retention strategy. They not only offer value to your customers through cashback, discounts, or other perks, but, by including reward tiers, you can encourage customers to spend even more with your brand.

Loyalty and rewards programs provide legitimate value to your customers.

Source: Really Good Emails

If you don’t already have a loyalty program, consider creating one, as 75% of consumers prefer companies that have loyalty and rewards programs.

4. Craft a clever social media marketing strategy.

Social media is a smart way to connect with your customers, both new and current. Between the various social media platforms, you can reach a diverse selection of consumers. With social media, you can share new products and create a brand culture by engaging in conversations with your followers.

Facebook and YouTube are the two most popular social media platforms, with 68% of American adults using Facebook and 73% of them using YouTube.

5. Put together a customer referral program.

A customer referral program offers two benefits: One is that it encourages new leads and the other is that it rewards your customers. That means it can be exponentially more valuable than other forms of marketing, like paid ads and phone calls.

Customer referral programs help acquire new customers and keep the ones you have.

Source: Really Good Emails

A solid referral program has benefits—54% of marketers say it costs less than other marketing channels and 78% of B2B marketers say it can generate “good or excellent” leads.

6. Optimize your digital marketing campaigns.

Implementing ecommerce customer retention strategies is just one part of an effective digital marketing campaign. To make the most of your marketing efforts, you need to optimize each marketing channel so it reaches the right audience.

Optimization can include aspects like creating mobile-friendly campaigns or sending and posting campaigns at the most appropriate time for your customers.

7. Make customer service and experience a top priority.

Creating value for your customers should be the primary focus of a customer retention strategy. Account updates and improvement strategies can not only provide unique customer experiences, but they can also encourage your customers to spend more with your company.

Customer service and experience can lead to happier customers.

Source: Really Good Emails

8. Provide a comprehensive customer dashboard.

A lot of ecommerce stores offer customers the option to either check out as a guest or create an account to make future purchases easier. When you provide a customer dashboard, you give your customers comprehensive insight into their history with you.

For future purchases, 30% of customers would rather shop with a company they’ve already purchased from, and a dashboard can make it easy for them to shop again.

9. Highlight strides toward corporate responsibility.

There’s a recent trend toward more aggressive corporate responsibility. Your customers want to know that your company is making an effort to give back to the community. This can be in the form of working with charities or implementing new corporate policies.

Highlighting corporate responsibility can lead to a better reputation.

Source: Really Good Emails

While sustainability reports aren’t a new concept, over 80% of the largest investors are now considering environmental, social, and governance issues when they’re making financial decisions.

10. Offer advice and insight that adds value.

You can use your digital marketing channels to do more than just offer coupons and new product information. By providing content that adds value, like industry advice or insight into new ways to use your products, you’re solidifying brand loyalty.

It’s important to find out what advice your customers want—60% of the content most brands create does nothing more than create clutter.

11. Use personalization to improve marketing campaigns.

Personalization is a strong marketing tactic. Whether it’s simply including your customer’s name or diving into more personal information, you can make your email campaigns more effective. Personalization can also help you with list segmentation.

Email personalization boosts open rates, click rates, and conversion rates.

Source: Really Good Emails

An email subject line or campaign with personalization results in a 26% higher open rate and an average 20% increase in sales. It can also lead to a click rate eight times higher.

12. Incorporate tools to connect with customers.

Effective communication is one of the most important ways to increase brand loyalty. You can encourage communication by sending text messages, surveys, and social media invites to your customers. You should also highlight other ways they can reach out to you: phone or chat.

Add social media icons to your website and email campaigns to increase the number of followers you have and insert a chatbot on your website to improve customer support.

How you can introduce ecommerce customer retention strategies into your marketing plan

If you haven’t put a lot of thought into your customer retention strategies, you still have time to capitalize on remarketing to your customers. Rather than reviewing a list and choosing one strategy to implement, you want to introduce customer retention strategies throughout your campaigns.

Use these simple, yet effective tips to introduce ecommerce customer retention strategies to your marketing plan:

  • Leverage your customer data: Email personalization and list segmentation are effective tools for targeting your customers. You can use your customer data to find trends in your audience and their actions.
  • Assess your marketing tools: Send time optimization and automated email campaigns are critical to effective customer retention. Determine how your current marketing tools can help you expand your campaigns.
  • Determine your sales goals: Performance metrics can help drive future marketing efforts. Analyze your current sales goals and how your current marketing plan is performing before you decide the goals for your retention efforts.

The best thing you can do is to introduce new customer retention strategies in stages and perform A/B testing to see what works for your ecommerce store.

Wrap up

Effective ecommerce customer retention strategies take some time to implement, but they’re worth the effort to increase your customer’s lifetime value (and ultimately reduce your marketing ROI). Keep these three things in mind when you’re updating your marketing plan:

  • Find out where your customers want to see improvements.
  • Analyze all of the information you have about your customers.
  • Determine the best channels for reaching your customers.

With the right digital marketing tools, you can introduce new customer retention strategies that boost your revenue and improve your brand’s reputation.

Looking for an email marketing tool that does more? Campaign Monitor has the tools you need to implement your ecommerce customer retention strategies.

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This blog provides general information and discussion about email marketing and related subjects. The content provided in this blog ("Content”), should not be construed as and is not intended to constitute financial, legal or tax advice. You should seek the advice of professionals prior to acting upon any information contained in the Content. All Content is provided strictly “as is” and we make no warranty or representation of any kind regarding the Content.
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