A big mistake many online store owners make is only worrying about the sale. They work so hard to drive customers to their store. Rarely, if ever, do they think about the person coming back to the store. Imagine how much your sales would increase if you had repeat buyers. Every person who buys from your store can be a repeat customer.

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Not all will and it’s foolish to think that everyone will come back and buy again. But, those who do buy a second or third time are invaluable. These are the customers who you are trying to win over the most.

Here we’re going to give you some tips on how to increase buyer retention. It’s far better to have customers who come back for more than it is to seek out new buyers continually.

Use pictures that correctly display your items:

The main reason why you want to use a professional photographer is this right here. Nothing is worse than buying a product only to find it’s not what you thought it was. The best way to avoid that is by making sure the pictures are of high quality. You can’t give your customers too many looks at the item in question.

Your store or Amazon listing should have as many pictures as possible. A customer can always click on them to inspect the product more closely. If you’re running a store, then it’s possible to use thumbnails. The option for the customer to see the item in more detail is never a bad thing. You can neatly offer up many views of the product without cluttering the page too much.

Always be honest in your product description:

Don’t promise the world to your customers. It’s easy in the beginning to guarantee a customer everything under the sun to get them to buy. All you want to do is get some sales, and you’ll do almost anything to get them. This strategy will backfire big time in the end.

The result will be product returns and fewer repeat customers. If your product needs to be hyped so much, then you need to choose something else to sell.

You may consider going the route of choosing a freelancer to write your product descriptions. Don’t hesitate to shop around at places like Fiverr and Upwork. Ask the sellers for samples and see if they can do a better job than you.

Not everyone is a naturally skilled writer, and this may be one of those areas where you need to outsource. You may have better results hiring someone else to do it who has written product descriptions that were honest and to the point.

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Offer a loyalty or a rewards program for repeat customers:

You can tie this in with email marketing as well. If they subscribe to your list, then offer them something in return for receiving your emails. You can have a little box with a check mark when they checkout asking if they’d like to join your list. You may want to leave it unchecked and allow them to check it. This way it’s their choice, and they’ll be more receptive of the email when receiving it.

Repeat customers should be rewarded with something. The thing you must always remember is that you’re competing with other companies. Never lose sight that some of those companies have deep pockets. Be creative when it comes to what you offer your loyal customers.

It could be free shipping or a discount. You want the reward to be something that triggers the person to buy. Ask yourself if what you’re offering would make you take advantage of the offer. If not, then come up with something else that will work.

Be active on social media:

You can also tie this in with your rewards program. Remind everyone who follows your social media accounts that you’ve got an excellent offer for repeat customers. Beyond that, you also want to reply to the messages people send you on social media. It doesn’t matter if they send a message saying how much they liked your product.

Send a short message back thanking them for their purchase. You should spend at least a few minutes every day going through your social media accounts seeing if anyone sent you any messages. It’s essential that you respond to them quickly as it shows you’re an actual company and not just someone who’s out to make a fast buck.

Take negative feedback seriously:

Not all people who dish out negative feedback do so because they’re having a bad day. You very well could have a problem on your hands that’s not being addressed. If this is the case, then their negative feedback could be invaluable. It may bring to light a problem that exists in which you had no idea about.

If you think about the entire process from the customer landing on your page to the product is in their hands, there’s plenty of room for error. If you’re just starting out, then it’s entirely possible there are hiccups along the way. You may be a seasoned professional and still have problems achieving a smooth transaction.

It can be easy to overlook problems with your process when you work every day of the week on your store. You can and will become blind to certain things. Instead of thinking of complainers as jerks, think of them as lifesavers. They very well could be picking up on something you’re missing out on.

You should listen to what they have to say and determine if they have a valid complaint. If they do, then it’s your job to find a way to fix it. Unless the complaint is very off the wall, you’re going to deal with it again. It will eventually creep up and could cost you sales in the long run.

Consider offering a freebie for taking a survey:

You don’t have to offer a customer something extravagant to take a survey. Keep in mind you can get great deals on some very cheap items related to your niche. Try to offer your customers something for .50 to a dollar if they fill out a survey. You can offer this to them after they receive the item.

Ask them to be totally blunt and straightforward when rating their experience. You should ask them what areas they think can be improved on. Go to Alibaba and find some cheap items that can be sent out with free shipping. Your customers will love the freebie, and you’ll get valuable information from them.

Always make sure all lines of communication are open:

Email, phone, and social media need to be available to the customer. They need to know that you value their business. Always make sure this information is visible at all times. A customer should never have to spend more than a minute trying to figure out how to contact you. More importantly, you’ve got to respond promptly.

There is no good reason why you can’t get back with a customer within 24 hours. If it takes longer than that, then you’ve got to hire some help. A customer’s questions need to be answered quickly and thoroughly if you expect a high level of satisfaction.

Small problems turn into big ones if they aren’t dealt with appropriately. A customer will never come back if you don’t adequately answer their questions. They may be testing your response to the question. Sometimes customers will see how attentive you are before buying. They may not buy anything if you don’t get back with them promptly.

Building lasting relationships is where the money is:

The goldmine of internet marketing is in repeat customers. They cost you less money in the end, even if you offer them rewards. You will spend what seems like an endless amount of money trying to acquire new customers. The real hope is that they come back and buy more from you.

A satisfied customer will also spread word of mouth advertising. This free form of advertising is crucial for your business to succeed to its fullest potential. You’ll end up shelling out big bucks if you can’t get repeat customers who refer their friends and relatives.

The approach many store owners have towards their customers leaves a lot to be desired. For whatever reason, they don’t think beyond the initial sale. It could be that they don’t think their store is worthy of a repeat visit. This sort of attitude isn’t productive when it comes to building a store with a solid future. If you’re only looking to make a quick buck, that’s one thing. However, if you want to strive and thrive in the world of online business, then you’ve got to create a store with a product line that satisfies the needs of your customers.

The way you know if you’re goal of achieving this has been met is by keeping a close eye on return customers. If you have plenty of return buyers, then you’re doing everything right. No repeat customers mean something is wrong, and you’ve got to do your best to determine where the problem is.

People have a way of making owning and operating an online store far more difficult than it needs to be. All you need to do is adequately describe the product and not over promise. Make sure the end buyer knows when to expect their purchase to arrive. You also have to address any problems they have promptly. If you do all of these things, then you’re well on your way of acquiring repeat customers that will propel your business onward into the future.