5 Effective Ways of Retaining Product Customers

In a saturated marketplace such as ours where competition is stiff, it makes sense to conserve the customer base that you have acquired. It’s a well-accepted fact: if you service the customers you have, you won’t have to go around hunting for new ones. Yet, sales and marketing people exert effort and expenses in generating leads.

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You can sell to an existing customer 7 out of 10 times, but only 1 out of 10 times to a new customer. Plus, acquiring new customers is costly. You can retain present customers at a fraction of this cost, one-sixth to be precise. And here’s the trump card of statistics in favor of customer retention: Gartner states that 80% of all your future ROI will come from just 20% of your customers. Wow, that’s an eye-opener! This means your business can survive (at least break even) just by cross-selling or up-selling to your existing customers. You almost don’t need to onboard new customers.

Are you thinking – this doesn’t concern me, I have a great product and my customers will never abandon me? Then, there’s another bitter pill you’ll have to swallow: no matter how good your product or service is, your customers might leave if they feel neglected. This is why many top-notch products and companies shut down. They just don’t work hard enough to build customer loyalty. In fact, a good 68% of customers say a company’s uncaring or impersonal attitude is a relationship-killer.

The graphic below will prove our point:

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Source

So putting things in perspective, we have compiled battle-tested techniques for retention of product customers.

1) Deliver Quality Products: The key to gaining repeat business is delivering top quality products. Nothing works as well as a product that wows with its features. Even if your product is marked higher than competitors, it will reign supreme if it’s a cut above the rest.

Let’s illustrate with an example: Two doorstep service providers, Urban Clap and Yes Madame. Both offer at-home salon services at competitive prices. Urban clap is priced higher than Yes Madame. Yet, it is market share is bigger. Why? The differentiator is service quality. UC technicians are better trained, use branded products, and are punctual and courteous. Granted, UC has the first-mover advantage, but it’s managed to keep up and even beat competition just because of its killer services. Although, the great marketing helps, but remember, even the most radical marketer can’t sell a product that sucks. Do ample market research when creating your product strategy. Understand what your audience needs. Have a long vision plus short-term goals. Never compromise on quality when faced with time or budget constraints. This is a non-negotiable area that every successful product company excels at. 

Read MoreIs Your Product Really Solving a Problem?     

2) Nurture Customer Relations: KPMG in their study found customer retention to be the biggest revenue driver for companies. The secret that many product companies don’t know is that loyal customers are their best promoters. Satisfied customers become brand ambassadors of a company. They campaign unknowingly about the superb experience they’ve had with a company or product they’re using. Their genuine, first-hand account is a marketing billboard in itself. You don’t need to hire expensive influencers for generating brand awareness or leads for yourself. Your happy customers are doing it for you. So, provide excellent customer service. Reward your return customers with gated offers, discounts, and resources. Treat them well and they’ll treat you better. Keep in touch with them via email, newsletters, and your website. Feature their stories on your social apps and website. Make them your family. Involve them in your journey and they will stay till the very end. A practical way to do this is to draw a list of customers who buy from you regularly. Reach out to them via exclusive offers and make them feel special. Another good tip: List out subscribers to your newsletter. These are people who show an active interest in your work but haven’t purchased anything yet. To make them jump boat, send a first-time promotion offer or discounted service/product. 

3) Lend a Personal Touch: Personalize all your emails and offers. Rid the assembly line approach of sending mass emails. An Ecoconsultancy survey has proved personalized offers, based on a user’s purchase history and preference, can surge your ROI to the sky. This infographic compares the business returns of companies using personalization vs. those that don’t.

4) Listen to Your Customers: Some product companies just never stop selling. Every effort of theirs is geared towards the cash register. This is hardly effective as customers, existing or new, don’t want to be taken for a ride. You’ll have to give them something in return. One of the best ways to make the relationship mutually beneficial is to incorporate their feedback into your future offerings. Don’t send lengthy questionnaires to customers asking them for their opinion or experience with your product. Keep it short and simple. Encourage specific, precise feedback regarding what they liked or didn’t like. Try to collate points and factor them into your product strategy. Do keep respondents in the loop, reassuring that their feedback isn’t ignored. When you value your customers’ opinions, they become stakeholders in your business.  Your product becomes more aligned to market needs. Your ROI improves and so does your customer satisfaction index.5-Effective-Ways-of-Retaining-Product-Customers_3 Source

5) Use a CRM: A CRM system is a handy way to keep track of how customers interact with your product. Draw up metrics of customer inquiries. What bottlenecks are customers facing with your service or product? Are they content with the after-sales service you’re giving? Do you need to improve in some areas? Deeply inspect issues that are reported by the majority of your customers. These have to be resolved on a priority basis. CRM also gives you a sneak peek into how well your sales or customer service staff are working. Disgruntled employees and lackadaisical post-sales staff can annoy a customer big time. This is a serious red flag for any organization and should be attended to immediately.

Wrap Up

By now, you must have grasped the impact customer retention can have on the sales and success of your business. Work your magic on your current customers. They are the big fish that’ll act as bait for the other fish in the pond.

If you are looking to build a web, mobile or a cloud product, you can avail of a round of discussion with iView Labs’ tech team. Our developers and project team are always here to help and suggest what is required and necessary for your products.

To know more about iView Labs, kindly log on to our website www.iviewlabs.com and to get in touch with us with your queries and needs just write us an email on  and .

Download the latest portfolio to see our works.

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“Developers on Demand” for IT Companies

Catering to the new shift in IT industry of reducing bench resources

Typically, as most persons are familiar, Just in time is an inventory management method for materials and goods to be available “On Demand” or be replenished as required in the production process.

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The general perception is that this method is most suitable for companies and industries where repetitive manufacturing functions are involved and are beneficial when the tasks involved are on an assembly plant or a job floor. However, with the rise of Information Technology and the advent of service-based businesses in the last one and a half decades, this has become an established practice in the IT circles too.

With a growing industry but season based demand for example in case of service businesses, it is highly time-consuming to build, maintain and manage the turnover of developers inventory through the traditional candidate pipelines. Moreover, despite the time and efforts put in it is not always as value adding for either the firm or the client since many software developers remain as Bench Resources in wait for a project and are a preventable cost to the company.

“Benched Resources” by definition are software developers who are waiting to get the project(s) to work upon. While these are important assets for the firm, it is also crucial to note that Benched Resources do not bring in revenues till such time that they get a project and hence remain more of a cost to the company. On the one hand, in situations or seasons where there are no or limited projects with the firm, it considers trimming down resources on the bench and on the other, the fact that he/she is waiting on the bench and a trim-down possibility can be demoralizers for the resource. Bench Resources were considered as the key strength of the Indian IT industry for a long time. However, with the increasing popularity and relevance of Developers being available on demand for short and fixed-term contracts, the environment is different. Added to this is the rise in automation and all these factors have reduced the average bench strength from 8% to 4% in recent years.

“Great vision without great people is irrelevant.”Jim Collins, Author of Good to Great

How can IT companies then maximize the value for both the software developers as well as the company with appropriate planning and work allocation?

This is where Developers on-demand model comes into the picture.  Traditionally, firms build and maintain candidate pipelines without an actual need but with developers on-demand model, IT companies are able to hire candidates that exactly match the needs or requirements of the project, at the time when they want them, in the appropriate number and at a mutually agreed cost or fees. Albeit, this does not provide the safety of the traditional candidate pipeline approach yet it is more targeted and rewarding. Also, with the advent of gig economy, business models where services are traded on the basis of access rather than ownership are picking up.

In some cases, many companies consider outsourcing projects for a specific duration when they want to focus on their core businesses. Many IT companies today send their benched resources to other companies for a project.  In this way, the companies are able to leverage expertise from multiple talents for specific projects and also better utilize the available resources by sending them for specific projects outside.

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Given below are some benefits of Developers On demand method.

  1. This is a pull system where the resource is pulled or utilized based on a need or demand. This permits IT companies to cover the staff requirement without having excess human inventory.
  2. Developer on Demand faster resource replenishment and lesser burden on the human resource department of the company.
  3. Developer on Demand model gives companies flexibility and convenience to get access to different talents which are existing across the industry. Moreover, since resources can be found quickly (usually within 24 hours) there is increased productivity and less slack time.
  4. This approach reduces the overall cost to the company, increases efficiency, productivity and saves on crucial organization time.

“The smartest business decision you can make is to hire qualified people. Bringing the right people on board saves you thousands, and your business will run smoothly and efficiently.”  – Brian Tracy

With so many advantages on the table, still one cannot nullify the importance of having some benched resources in this industry. Resources which specialize in certain skills and are high on performance are contracted so that they can be called upon as needed

The Developers on-demand model is beneficial as it makes underused software developers, both tangible and intangible. If companies come together and start sharing their underused resources or services, this will decrease cost and also will make sure that every resource is rightly utilized.

Team iView

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