When it comes to building a successful Shopify business, it can be hard to know where to invest your efforts. Should you focus on attracting a new audience, or retaining your existing customers? As is often the case in ecommerce, there’s no definitive answer here – but statistically speaking, returning customers spend more.
Research conducted by Bain & Company discovered that customers shopping within the apparel vertical spent 67% more per order after shopping with a company for 30 months and beyond.
The greater the connection they’ve built with your brand, the happier customers will be to return and spend more money. If you’re looking to increase the amount that a customer spends in total with your store over time, it’s time to roll out the red carpet with these five essential ground rules.
1. Shopify Notification Templates and Beyond: Build a Brand They’ll Recognize
When you’re selling in a competitive space, your brand has the potential to be your biggest ally and advantage. By paying attention to detail, and creating a brand that feels familiar and consistent across all touchpoints, you’ll give a professional (and memorable) impression.
Every interaction is a chance for your customer to appreciate and identify with the brand values and personality that you’ve carefully crafted. How can you ensure you’re going the extra mile when it comes to stores built on Shopify?
One of the best (and easiest!) actions you can take is to enhance the “basic” customer emails that Shopify sends on your behalf. The difference between receiving an unbranded “default” message letting you know your order is confirmed, and something that’s beautifully customized, with appealing, on brand copy, is night and day.
Use OrderlyEmails to take full advantage of Shopify notification templates which are easily updated with your own branding and messages.
2. Master the Art of Merchandising
Since the dawn of commerce, store owners have been wise to the art of the deal. Tempting your customers with fantastic value, in the form of a carefully concocted package or time limited offer, is a tried and tested way to get more sales across the line.
Offering bundles can be a great way to bump up the average cart value of sales made via your online store. By grouping products together and selling at a reduced rate, you’ll encourage customers to try new products and spend more, while delivering a satisfying saving. Nothing keeps customers coming back for more like the feeling that they always get great value for money when they shop with you.
To work out how best to structure your bundle offers, look at the patterns you’re seeing in carts over time. Sometimes products will seem like a natural fit, but some pairings might surprise you, so it’s well worth digging into the data and getting creative here.
3. Richly Reward Loyalty
The ultimate pathway to a healthy CLV is to drive repeat custom. Building a brand your customer feels an affinity for is an essential step towards success. But if you’re really going to see a return on your efforts, you’ll also want to actively reward loyalty.
While loyalty programs traditionally focus on collectable membership points that are exchanged for products or discounts (and ROI is well proven for this strategy) there are many other ways that you can show your most active customers some special treatment. Increasingly, as brand-led ecommerce moves towards staggered product releases, limited editions and highly anticipated stock drops, offering your most loyal customers early access to these products – or even exclusive items not for general sale – can be just as appealing as a freebie.
Membership programs can have a lot of moving parts, and will require upkeep, but if you’re looking to build serious CLV, then working with a dedicated loyalty solution, such as Smile or Loyalty Lion, is an essential investment.
4. Double Down on Pre-emptive Customer Service
The path to increased customer lifetime value must run smoothly. Friction-free customer experiences are an essential element of a longstanding brand relationship. This means paying attention to your omnichannel experience. How well is your brand bridging the on and offline divide?
Even brands with no brick and mortar presence need to get this right. No one wants a stunning online customer experience to be marred by a lacklustre unboxing and terrible follow up customer care.
The best customer service happens before the need to ask for help. Make sure you’re ticking every box by thinking about the things you can do to proactively help make your customers’ lives easier. This might look like the automatic emailing of a Shopify invoice (beautifully branded of course – see the first section of this article!) or including helpful customized packing and returns slips. You’ll cut down on your support tickets at the same time as offering your converted customers a considerate, personable service that will keep them coming back to your store, time and time again.
5. Get Canny with Your Cross Selling
Finally, what better way to boost up your customer lifetime value than giving your customers a direct path to purchase items you know they’ll love. Cross selling is a powerful tool when it comes to growing your store’s sales, and one which many brands under utilize.
The secret to successful cross selling is relevance. Segmentation of your customer base is the order of the day here – grouping your audience by demographic, special interest or past purchase behavior, and then offering them products which are proven to be popular within that cohort.
Use OrderlyEmails to include your offers, discounts and “picked just for you” products via specialty customized Shopify notification templates – all without a single line of code.
Ready to Increase CLV for Your Shopify Brand?
We hope these ideas have got you thinking about the tools you could be leaning on to help boost your customer lifetime value. Retention may not have the same heady rush as a fast and fiery acquisition campaign, but its slower burn is proven to be a more dependable driver of value over time. Build a brand to be proud of, and keep them coming back for more.