Losing loyal customers and potential sales are two of the biggest risks in eCommerce. Unfortunately, losing customers can happen often, especially if you’re just starting out or you haven’t evaluated your business in a while. What’s worse, identifying the factors that are causing you to lose customers isn’t always easy.
By building a rock-solid Customer Experience Management strategy, you can determine the way your business truly operates according to the customers you serve. You’ll have the opportunity to identify the moments your customers walk away from your products, as well as the reasons they stick with you in a saturated market.
What is Churn?
In eCommerce, the term churn refers to the loss of potential customers along various points in the overall Customer Experience and Customer Journey. With careful analysis, you can calculate your business’s churn rate to determine how often touchpoints lead to repeat customer engagement.
The goal of any eCommerce business is to move seamlessly through the Customer Experience pathway. You want your brand to create touchpoints, facilitate customer interactions, and encourage customer engagements that lead to customer loyalty. When you identify the factors leading to churn, you can make sure your brand is facilitating that Customer Experience pathway.
Why Churn Matters to Your eCommerce Business
If your Customer Experience isn’t up to par, you won’t be meeting customer expectations. When you’re not meeting customer expectations, you’re not bringing in enough business. A failure to connect people with your products necessarily leads to a problem with connecting with the people themselves.
Cultivating a customer-centric brand is all about return on investment. You build your brand to appeal to a demographic and fulfill their customer needs. A good customer experience will lead to an increase in sales which justifies your time spent researching your customers. High churn is, therefore, an expensive problem that can make or break your business.
To succeed in a saturated eCommerce market, your business should focus on retaining brand loyalty by offering the most positive experience possible. Just as your products must be top-quality, your service and customer experience must be high-quality, too. Designing your Customer Experience to demonstrate value-added connections with your customers is key.
How to Reduce Churn
Unfortunately, understanding customer churn isn’t always easy to achieve. There are, however, common sticking points for many eCommerce businesses where the customer experience can break down. It’s at these points that churn most frequently occurs.
Create Customer Feedback Loops
The best way to find out why a customer left or what they found difficult about the Customer Journey is to flatout ask them. Take the time to follow up with customers via email communications or by physically calling them. Not only will they feel like you see them and value their participation with your business, but you’ll be able to establish a pattern for churn.
Surveys are an excellent way to create feedback loops and collect actionable data. Calculating your Net Promoter Score (NPS) and Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT) will allow you to identify strengths and weaknesses that might contribute to churn.
Communicate with Customers on Social Media
In addition to calling and emailing your customers for feedback, you should reach out to them on social media. Better yet you can connect on social media before anything in the Customer Experience even goes awry. Really connecting on social media and solidifying a customer’s perception of your brand and products as a valuable resource is an excellent way to prevent churn.
Identify Your Most Loyal Customers
Conduct a profile of your current customers just as you did when you determined your initial demographic. What do your loyal customers have in common? Where do they connect with your brand the most? What products do they buy more frequently than others? In other words, establish where your current strengths are in the Customer Experience and see what you can do to elevate all experiences to that level.
The A.C.A.F. Customer Feedback Loop is a great model for profiling loyal customers. To use it to profile your loyal customers:
- Ask loyal customers for feedback
- Categorize that feedback
- Act on feedback from loyal customers
- Follow-up with loyal customers
Reward Customer Referrals
Offering incentives for customer advocacy will simultaneously boost customer satisfaction and connect your brand with like-minded individuals. Happy customers are much more likely to spread awareness of your products. When you reward their efforts you create a better customer experience and reduce the likelihood of customer churn.
Your eCommerce business thrives on designing the Customer Experience to create meaningful connections with loyal customers. A valuable Customer Experience offers a return on investment for your business by reducing the customer churn rate. As a successful business owner, aim to consistently demonstrate the importance you place on the customers themselves in order to connect them with the products you love.