Making Loyal Customers for Life

Small businesses have an advantage over larger ones when it comes to making customers for life. In most small businesses, the person who facilitates the sale continues to have customer contact after the fact. As a result, the style and service mode that attracted the customer continues unaltered, and the customer’s buying decision is reaffirmed during every future contact.

warning_bomb.eps As small businesses get larger, some adopt structures that resemble those of their big-business role models, and suddenly, their customer focus begins to change. Don’t let this happen to you. Manage your business so that every person in your organization realizes the value of every customer — not only to your sales today but also to your sales tomorrow and well into the future, when the customer’s positive comments will lead others to your business.

remember.eps The U.S. Department of Commerce confirms that getting a new customer costs five times more than retaining a current one. Other studies show that customers who claim to be “totally satisfied” are six times more likely to become repeat purchasers than customers who claim to be only “satisfied” and that loyal customers are worth ten times the value of single-purchase buyers. Why else does loyalty matter? Consider this list:

Loyal customers ...

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