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Rainman
02-22-2014, 03:45 AM
When I owned a small business in a small town (don't ask me which one) there was always the problem of retaining customers because as the town was developing more and more people were starting similar businesses. As I was not good at inter-personal relationships I started losing my customers to the other guys who were great at that sort of thing. I'm just theorizing that probably, that's what cost me customers but I'd like to hear from you.

Should one try to befriend his customers in order to retain them or are there better ways to retain customers without having to pretend you're interested in them and not their money?

Cd2 Solutions
02-25-2014, 03:50 AM
try to keep customers when you can, chances are that if you offer a service that they use a lot, they wont use another company, especially if you treat them well.

of course its much easier if you get on with them on a personal level.

Taru
02-25-2014, 04:39 AM
I'd guess that it depends on the type of business and the culture of the local area and the people you are selling to, but if it's retail, I'd say generally it is a good idea to make people feel comfortable shopping with you, yes. However, customer loyalty can really only take you so far, and I personally wouldn't really even call it that necessary to build personal relationships with them as they will probably just move on as soon as something more convenient comes along. I'd focus more on marketing and pricing tactics over personal relationships, if it were me.

mikelouis
02-25-2014, 08:37 AM
There is no doubt that any business for it to continue flourishing, then you need to maintain a good relationship with your customers. At least from them, they can refer more people to your business and most importantly come back for more products and services.

tspires2
02-26-2014, 09:29 AM
Living in a small town that is key! Unfortunately in a lot of circumstances this is a lot harder than one might imagine! I once had a person come into my store. I was running it by myself that day I had 2 people call in sick. I was behind the counter counting money as we had about 5 minutes to close and a customer comes in, I say hello and go back to counting money. I probably was not as friendly as I should have been since I was multitasking, needless to say my bad day costs me a customer! He reminded me that I could have taken just a minute to assure he had a good experience! From that day forward I made sure everyone that walked through my door felt welcomed and comfortable, in a small town it really does make all the difference!

Taru
03-05-2014, 03:19 AM
Living in a small town that is key! Unfortunately in a lot of circumstances this is a lot harder than one might imagine! I once had a person come into my store. I was running it by myself that day I had 2 people call in sick. I was behind the counter counting money as we had about 5 minutes to close and a customer comes in, I say hello and go back to counting money. I probably was not as friendly as I should have been since I was multitasking, needless to say my bad day costs me a customer! He reminded me that I could have taken just a minute to assure he had a good experience! From that day forward I made sure everyone that walked through my door felt welcomed and comfortable, in a small town it really does make all the difference!

You brought up a very interesting point, and I completely did miss that. I agree, I think small towns do tend to operate a lot more on personal relationships and in this case, being pleasant with your customers is probably a must. A more professional transaction is probably a lot easier to get away with in bigger cities where everyone is pretty much on the go, but when it comes to small towns where everybody knows each other and word spreads around fast, I think it's much better to take advantage of it by which I mean it might be best to give them a good story to spread around since they will most likely do so anyway.

tspires2
03-05-2014, 08:02 AM
Your right! If this would have happened in a larger city no one would have ever blinked an eye about it! The idea of the everyone knows everyone goes a really long way in a small town! Your right about the talk as well, if they are going to talk it may as well be positive! Depending on where you are this may or may not matter just some food for thought!

alec
03-05-2014, 10:23 AM
It's very important to create such a relationship because like you wrote, when similar businesses start popping up, they'll still use your services. Offering discounts, loyalty cards or simply talking and listening to your clients builds trust and attachment to your business, especially in a small town or small neighborhood. Make them feel welcomed, interact with them and they'll surely return.

Since people like routine, buying from the same store makes them feel comfortable. Just make sure it's your store they buy from!

caveman
03-05-2014, 11:18 AM
This is one of the most important factors I feel because without customers, you won't be able to succeed at all. It's good to befriend your customers but only if you genuinely like them. There are just some people you click with and for me, I have a lot of customers I talk to because we have the same interest and I don't have to pretend. Those are the customers that you will want to keep.

Gmac9100
03-06-2014, 06:29 PM
It depends on what kind of business you own. If you own a local business in a small community, yes. building a long lasting relationship with customers is extremely important. One bad review can be a cancer to reputation in a small community. If you own a Major corporation, not so much. For a company with millions of customers. One bad review doesn't matter much.

Jane Hastings
03-09-2014, 10:42 AM
Acquiring customers can be crucial but retaining them is even more crucial. A customer is the most important member of a business because without the customer there's no business. Customers love to feel valued and most businesses do everything they can to gain their trust and loyalty. Building customer relationships is essential and making the customers feel valued is important. So, try to interact with them. :)

JohnSword
03-10-2014, 03:14 AM
I wouldn't go so far as to befriend my customers. At the same time, it's important to realize that in our increasingly socially-connected business world, it pays to be authentic. People value authenticity and if you are serious about a long-term business relationship with your customers, you have to be upfront and honest.

As Benjamin Franklin once said “It takes many good deeds to build a good reputation, and only one bad one to lose it”. The more effort you put into being open and authentic, the more effective you will be in engendering a perception of integrity and trust with your customers.

fredkawig
03-10-2014, 10:17 AM
Having good customer satisfaction is the most important thing a business should have. You don't need to pretend that you're interested, you need to show them through your products, the people you hire and represent you.

bingaguilar
03-21-2014, 07:18 AM
I think it depends on the type of business that you have or more importantly the location of your business. In a small town, or neighborhood, where almost everybody knows everybody, it's very important to build lasting relationships with your customer. In situations like this, word of mouth is more important than print advertising. If you maintain a good relationship with your clientele then they would do the promoting for you. Remember, word spreads fast and in a small town, you're only as good as your last transaction with a client/customer. So you also have to be consistent in your dealings with them. Just make them feel welcome and make their shopping experience as convenient and enjoyable as possible and you're sure to have them coming in for a long time. And often with tag-alongs, too. ;)

crimsonghost747
03-22-2014, 06:34 AM
As many have said, it really depends on the type of business you have. It's always a good idea to treat your customers well, especially if they become regulars. For example: say you own a coffee shop. If you have someone who comes there every Saturday and Sunday, it's only natural that you get into a bit more personal conversation with them than you would with a regular customer. Also, definitely won't hurt you to give regulars a discount once in a while. For example, using the above example of a coffee house with a customer who comes in every weekend: when you get a new product, give him one for free and ask what he thinks about it.

kitchie
09-25-2015, 05:36 AM
Having a repeat costumers only means that they are satisfied with your product or service.. It is important because in my cases these repeat costumers will lead to new clients..

Gvac
10-30-2015, 07:39 AM
Everyone knows customer relationships affect the success of your business, no business gets far after losing the clients. Long lasting relationship with customers is extremely important for building buisness. Customer depend on you to keep them informed. Talk with them one of your top priorities.

1Maverick
01-30-2016, 10:03 AM
When I owned a small business in a small town (don't ask me which one) there was always the problem of retaining customers because as the town was developing more and more people were starting similar businesses. As I was not good at inter-personal relationships I started losing my customers to the other guys who were great at that sort of thing. I'm just theorizing that probably, that's what cost me customers but I'd like to hear from you.

Should one try to befriend his customers in order to retain them or are there better ways to retain customers without having to pretend you're interested in them and not their money?



Rainman howdy,

Retaining customers is one of the things that will allow you to sit back & watch the bucks roll in, as you asked in another post.
It allows you to create a sustainable business & income supply, without it you'll eventually go out of business as what is occuring. Keeping customers is a simple thing once you understand what you're about.
I'm constantly faced with this challenge & even had a competitor copy my business name & model :D. Here's some tips i use to beat my competition on a regular:

1. Get personal with your customers (be concerned in the lives outside your business, get to know persons they associate with, go the extra mile for them, etc...)
2. Offer incentives for loyalty to YOUR business (giveaways, discounts, VIP offers, etc...)
3. Always know & promote YOUR competitive advantage to your market (a SWOT analysis will help)
4. Be generally open & friendly. DON'T try to obviously get their customers, you'll appear to be desperate & of less value

As always, these are just what i can post in my short time online. If you haven't already, be sure to get my free resources (http://www.moneymanmaverick.com) to assist.

Kevin@sits
03-10-2016, 09:10 AM
It all depends o the type of business.
If you own a souvenir shop where tourist come to buy articles to take back to their country, You may not need to work on customer retention because you do not need the same customers coming back daily or weekly or monthly.
On the other hand if you have a business where you need customer retention, then you should hire someone who is naturally people oriented to interact with the customers.
You maybe excellent at what you do so don't change who you are focus on what you do best. Then hire someone with the natural interpersonal relationship talent which you do not have. They will fill that gap in the business.
They may never be able to do what you do and they don't have to, because you are doing your part.
That is where team work and synergy is built.
The business will expand and all will be satisfied.
It's one of the things I have to train a lot of entrepreneurs to understand.
You have to know every aspect of your business but you do not have to do everything.
I hope this helps.

eWomenNetwork
09-06-2018, 02:05 AM
Customers are the heartbeat of all the businesses. The relationships that you have/create with your customers is directly linked with the success of your business. The better a business can manage their relationships with the customers, more successful it will be! The initial steps to have a healthy relationship with your customers is to understand and learn about their needs and behavior. Developing healthy relations require dedication and time and the right strategies to work with. Below are some of the reasons why customer relationships hold importance:

1. Recent studies state that customers jump over to your competitors due to the poor customer care services rather than the cost.
2. The relationship that you have with your customer makes you a level up than your competitor and is a key differentiator.
3. Strong relationships and customer satisfaction make them come back to you in future.
4. It's easy to retain the customers than to look out for the new ones. Looking out for new potential customers requires so much of customer attention, converting them to a lead and selling them your product or service.

Explore more ways about creating lasting relationships (https://www.ewomennetwork.com/blog/ewomennetwork-1/post/5-ways-to-build-lasting-customer-relationships-in-the-digital-age-158) with customers in this digital age.