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How to build customer loyalty with these 6 tactics

April 18th 2023

Camilla Bass

By Camilla Bass

Senior Content Marketing Manager

Learning how to build customer loyalty has never been more important. But the crowded eCommerce landscape, rising consumer expectations and tightening of purse strings mean brands need to seriously flex those customer experience muscles to keep shoppers coming back for more.

While there’s no magic bullet when it comes to creating loyal customers, it helps to stay informed on the latest customer loyalty trends to ensure you’re giving shoppers the experience they expect.

In addition to our customer loyalty report, we’ve teamed up with the experts at Dotdigital, LoyaltyLion, Trustpilot, Sendcloud and Miappi to bring you the Ultimate Guide to Customer Loyalty in 2023. The guide covers topics including loyalty programs, email personalization, data privacy, cart abandonment, ratings and reviews, the delivery experience, brand communities and more.

Keep reading to discover how to build customer loyalty in 5 steps taken from the guide, and download your free copy to discover even more tactics and tips to give your customer experience the loyalty workout it needs.

1) Email personalization

Almost 1 in 4 consumers would stop shopping with a retailer if they received emails every day with irrelevant content, which means personalized content is no longer a nice-to-have, it’s essential.

If your business is guilty of sending one too many generic, inbox-clogging bulk emails, think about using first-party and zero-party data to personalize elements of your emails, such as product recommendations and banners. This will help ensure that the content you’re sending to customers is going to make them feel seen and understood by your brand.

2) Segmentation

Savvy marketers know that it’s ineffective to deliver the same marketing content to everyone. Customers want to feel like you share a bond with them, and that you know them well. This is why it’s more powerful to use different approaches for different audiences. Take control of your customer data with segmentation to deliver highly relevant content to shoppers at the moment they are most engaged, as well as exclude groups of customers from seeing irrelevant content.

Segmenting your existing customers from new shoppers is a simple step you can take towards boosting loyalty. Once you’ve sliced up your data and you’ve got an existing customer segment, you can target that group with exclusive content and offers to reinforce their relationship with your brand and show your appreciation.

Since more than 1 in 3 consumers get frustrated when they see offers aimed at new shoppers that they’re unable to use as an existing customer, you can also exclude that segment from seeing those disappointing discounts and give them perks such as early access to sales instead.

3) Triggered emails

If you want to send timely emails that are relevant to each recipient, triggered emails should be at the top of your ‘how to build customer loyalty’ to do list.

These types of emails are triggered by an individual’s activity, not sent as part of a scheduled send, and are therefore very topical and timely.

Among the many types of triggered emails, there are a few that stood out in our customer loyalty research. Almost 1 in 4 consumers want notifications via email when sold-out products they’ve browsed come back in stock, as well as email notifications when products they’ve browsed drop in price. Triggered back in stock and price drop emails are an ideal way to re-engage customers and create a delightful customer experience that anticipates the shopper’s needs.

When it comes to the post-purchase part of the customer journey, 1 in 4 Gen Z consumers want to receive timely replenishment emails. This kind of email should not be sent immediately, but when the customer might soon run out of the product.

4) Product recommendations

When it comes to building customer loyalty, customers are more likely to stick with retailers who show them personalized product recommendations. In fact, almost 1 in 4 consumers want retailers they shop with regularly to make it easy for them to discover more products they might like.

And with a plethora of customer data available at the average eCommerce marketer’s fingertips, there are plenty of opportunities to personalize those product recommendations and ramp up their loyalty-boosting power. For example, use past purchase data to recommend products that your customer has frequently browsed or purchased, reminding them of products that they are already interested in but haven’t carted yet.

5) Loyalty program

Customers want to feel like their relationship with you is a two-way street. By implementing a loyalty program, you can reward customers for buying from choosing you over competitors. This can incentivize them into continuing to buy from you, and it could also improve  AOV. It may also improve the bond they share with your brand.

6) Data privacy

The ability to accurately identify users is a fundamental requirement for creating personalized customer experiences that drive conversions and boost loyalty, which is why a good identity strategy should be one of your most valuable assets.

But consumer concerns over data privacy are growing. In fact, 1 in 4 consumers would stop shopping with a retailer if they’re not transparent about how they handle customer data and privacy. This means that it’s vital to ensure any software you implement to help improve the customer experience, such as personalization software, will help you future-proof your identity strategy.

Look for software that will help your business future-proof its identity strategy in order to continue reaping the benefits of personalization as well as growing and enriching your customer database, something that will benefit your business in many ways in the future.

Find out how your personalization platform identifies users, and opt for a platform that uses a combination of zero-party data (data that people enter into your forms) and first-party data (what they do on your website), steering well clear of solutions that rely on third-party data, fingerprinting or other techniques designed to subvert or get around privacy protection legislation.

Learn more: Personalization Buyer’s Guide to Identity Resolution

Some final thoughts on how to build customer loyalty

With the tricky economic climate and increasingly competitive landscape, learning how to build customer loyalty has never been more important for eCommerce businesses.

It’s a constant learning process, since CX trends ebb and flow and customer expectations tend to increase over time. So keeping up to date with the latest customer loyalty research is key.

Here’s a recap of our 5 steps to building customer loyalty.

  • Grow rapport with your customers through relevant, personalized emails. Use a combination of first-party and zero-party data to add personalized elements to your emails, such as personalized product recommendations.
  • Create a segment of your returning customers and show them targeted offers and content, while excluding them from seeing offers for new shoppers that they’re unable to use.
  • Re-engage customers and bring them back to your site with triggered back in stock and price drop emails.
  • Boost customer loyalty with personalized product recommendations that make it easy for returning customers to find products they are interested in.
  • Introduce rewards via a loyalty scheme to keep customers coming back.
  • Data privacy is becoming increasingly important to consumers and a lack of transparency could result in lost customers. Ensure you can personalize the customer experience while complying with data privacy regulations by using software that uses a combination of zero-party and first-party data.

Download your free copy of our Ultimate Guide to Customer Loyalty in 2023 for real-life examples for each of the tactics discussed, as well as even more ways to build customer loyalty.

Camilla Bass

By Camilla Bass

Senior Content Marketing Manager

As Senior Content Marketing Manager at Fresh Relevance, Camilla leads the global content strategy and manages, writes and edits user-centered content that helps marketers in the eCommerce and travel spaces get their jobs done.