We’re going to kick off 2011 with a focus on the essentials to building online loyalty and increasing customer retention, both of which have a direct impact on profitability. Knowing what can help to create a loyal online following is a key for online marketers and over the next couple of weeks, we will be taking a look at some trends, tips and examples of the companies that seem to be doing it right.
Before getting too involved in the subject we should go ahead and clear some things up so we are all on the same page. To begin with, while customer retention and customer loyalty may seem interchangeable, they are actually two separate terms. Customer retention typically refers to a customer who places an order within a specific time span, for instance, someone who purchases from you once a year and your competitor 5 times a year can still be considered a retained customer. Customer loyalty takes retention a step further and at this point you’ve developed an ongoing relationship with your customer. They trust you, don’t look at your competitors and regularly buy from you.