Adding new customers is one of the major goals of any business. Here are three ways you can increase the base of customers you have frequenting your business:
1. Increase the rewards for the referral of new customers
When you improve the rewards, your existing customers receive for sending you knew business, it becomes more likely that they will make the extra effort to do so.
This may cost a bit more to acquire a new customer, yet if the lifetime value of your customers is large, and your business has exhausted traditional methods of adding new customers, then this could be an avenue worth pursuing.
Just be certain that you also have another method in place to retain these new customer additions, such as a customer rewards or loyalty program. This way, you are not spending more to acquire new customers who will not stay.
2. Expand your business to new locations, or add a web-based component
Expanding your business must be done wisely, yet it can help to draw in customers who otherwise might not frequent your business.
The same careful planning in choosing your first location should also go into planning subsequent locations, and you should spend some time helping the management of the new store to get trained so that the experience between stores is seamless.
The Internet is also a good addition to increase the number of customers you serve; with a web presence, you can do business with your customers whenever they get the urge to do so.
3. Reactivate dormant customers
If customers have purchased from your business in the past, but no longer does so, it pays to find out why. Perhaps these customers are no longer able to, and cannot be recovered. But in other cases, contacting them again can result in them returning, which expands your active customer base. The best part about this?
Re-activating customers who bought from your business in the past is easier to do, and potentially more profitable than trying to win over people who know little to nothing about your business, or why they should become your customers.
One great way to do this is to tell them about a new product or service offering, which you have just added, and which they might be interested in based on their past purchasing patterns.
So, by making referral rewards more lucrative, expanding your business presence, and pulling old customers back in, it is possible for your business to substantially expand its customer base. This improves your business’ chances of survival, especially in difficult economic circumstances.
4. Qualified Referrals
Most good businesses receive new customer referrals automatically from their existing customer base; however, this normally has limitations, as follows:
- The flow of automatic referrals is unlikely to be adequate to build your business exponentially
- Referrals emanating from the whole of your customer base does not provide targeted and highly qualified leads as only the best customers provide the best referrals
To overcome these limitations, you need to proactively seek greater volumes of highly qualified customer referrals. You can do this in two ways. Firstly, you need to segment your existing customer base to identify the best customers.
This may typically be 20% of your customer base. Secondly, you need to ask your best customers for referrals in the most appropriate manner. Customers who refer others to you tend to refer those who are of similar mind, having similar purchasing needs and purchasing power.
5. Consider the Demands of Customers
Every business has problems with customers from time to time. This can be due to bad service levels or the inability of your business to meet the ongoing needs and expectations of certain customers.
Equally, I find the problem customer has nothing to do with the quality of your services at all, but everything to do with them as a customer. They may have unrealistic demands, or they may just be badly aligned to your business proposition.
In other words, there may be a mismatch between their specific needs and the solution that your business provides for people. So even though they have become a customer, they don’t meet your requirements as a well-qualified targeted prospect.
You should put in the effort to meet the demands of your clients. If you want to expand the customer base, then deliver your products at the doorsteps of your customers. Hire the order fulfillment services providers such as MDS services.
Here’s an example. Let’s say that you provide a complete domestic carpet cleaning service for your customers. You can provide a whole range of domestic carpet and upholstery cleaning within a home environment.
What you don’t do, however, is provide industrial cleaning for factories and warehouses. All your best customers enable you to keep their carpets and upholstery clean and fresh within their homes.
Let’s assume that you attract a new prospect that is looking for a large-scale refresh of their entire factory and warehouse facility. You decide to take on this customer because you don’t like to turn people away.
Given the best will in the world, this is unlikely to work out, and difficulties will probably occur. This situation can be avoided by only taking on qualified prospects as new customers. Here are some of the key elements for assessing qualified customers.