How to Attract and Retain Customers by Prioritizing Their Convenience

As a small business owner or marketing manager, one of your primary goals should be to attract and retain customers. Unfortunately, this is often easier said than done. You’re just one small company within a vast sea of competitors. Given that reality, it’s not unusual to experience a high customer turnover rate.

Whether you struggle to earn new business or retain customer loyalty, you may have to readjust your focus. Consider reorienting your efforts to give the people what they want: convenience. Here’s how to attract and retain customers by prioritizing their convenience during every shopping experience.

Improve Checkout Ease


Almost all businesses operate at least partially online nowadays, so it’s essential to make the virtual buying process as seamless as possible. Create a convenient checkout experience by giving customers plenty of payment options. Utilizing small business payment solutions that accept modern payment methods like Apple Pay and Google Pay in addition to credit and debit cards makes the payment process easier for customers.

According to a report published by the National Retail Federation, 83% of consumers agree that convenience is an important part of the shopping experience. Many customers won’t hesitate to abandon a cart if any part of the purchasing process is inconvenient for them. This is especially true for online shoppers.

Some e-commerce businesses make the mistake of requiring customers to create an account at checkout. If you offer a points system or other type of reward system, shoppers will need to register the first time they make a purchase. To collect points going forward, they’ll also need to log in every time they buy something on your site. Many individuals get annoyed by this extra step, so don’t make it a requirement for all shoppers. Provide a guest checkout option so they can purchase their goods quickly and easily as desired.

Retain Abandoned Shopping Carts


A lot of things can interrupt the online purchasing process and lead to cart abandonment. Children, pets, work responsibilities, or an unexpected phone call can all draw a shopper’s attention away from their online cart. It’s also possible that shoppers might get frustrated by poor site loading times or surprise shipping costs at checkout. Or a customer may want to compare your offerings with another store’s offerings before they finalize a purchase.

None of the above, though, necessarily means that the consumer won’t return. If your website doesn’t retain abandoned shopping carts, your customer may come back to an empty cart. As you can imagine, this is a very frustrating scenario for the average person. Shoppers expect to be able to return to their cart and complete the checkout process at any time.

Most people don’t have the patience to fill their cart up again with the same items as before. Even worse, many of those frustrated customers will choose not to shop with your company again. Setting up your website to enable the retention of shopping carts for your customers will help boost their convenience and loyalty. And it will likely boost your revenues at the same time.

Maintain a Convenient Return Policy


Nowadays, many people expect to be able to return items free of charge if they aren’t satisfied with them. A convenient return policy gives shoppers a degree of confidence that your company will treat them fairly if they change their mind regarding a purchase. When you make your return policy hassle-free, you show customers that you truly care about their satisfaction. It’s also an indication that you stand behind the quality of your products in all cases.

There are many ways to make your return policy more convenient. You might offer free returns within a certain time frame. If you do, consider automatically adding a prepaid return label to packages so customers don’t have to print one out. You could also allow customers to return items without a receipt for store credit.

A customer-friendly, reasonable return policy can go a long way toward earning consumer loyalty and appreciation. There’s always a possibility that some shoppers will take advantage of a generous return policy. But you’ll still most likely come out ahead by gaining new business and retaining the customers you already have. No matter what your return policy is, make sure it’s clearly outlined on your site where customers can see it.

Improve Customer Service Response Times


Your customer service response times and policies can either earn consumer trust or drive customers away. If you’ve ever been on hold with customer service for way too long, you know firsthand how true this is. In a Zendesk survey, 89% of customers reported that customer service response time helps them decide what companies to buy from. Ensuring convenience when shoppers reach out to your customer service department is essential for customer retention.

Most of the time, people who contact customer service do so because they have a problem or concern regarding their order. They are probably already frustrated and expect your staff to resolve their problems quickly and compassionately. How your customer service department responds to their queries can make or break your relationship with these buyers.

It may sound trite to say “The customer is always right.” This isn’t always true, and some customers may be blatantly rude and wrong. However, if your customer service employees are trained to always treat customers well, they will have greater success de-escalating situations. Customer service managers should establish processes to speed response times and train customer-facing personnel in their use. Your average customer service response time can have a huge impact on shopper satisfaction and loyalty.

Optimizing customer retention can seem like a complex puzzle, but in most cases, it isn’t really that complicated. The key is to make sure it’s as convenient as possible for customers to shop with you. From improving the checkout process to reducing the time it takes to resolve customer service issues, these tips will help you attract and maintain loyal customers.

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