The study of UK Shopper Loyalty by TCC Global reveals that the vicinity of supermarkets drives customer choice by 48%, while range of products and service accounts for 40% and habit and familiarity for 39%. It is clear from this analysis that customer retention for supermarkets depends on multiple factors like location, variety, price and shopping experience.
- Work On Customer Education And Empowerment
Take a break from hard-core and promotional selling. Instead of pushing products down the throats of your customers, appeal to their buying psychologies in a refined manner. Educate them on their rights and entitlements. Consumerism is all about understanding one’s right to quality products and services at the right price. Teach customers to purchase smart and to question any compromises in ethics. Social media can be used to enable customers get enlightened as a community.
- Offer A Choice Of Best-Selling Brands
People visit supermarkets as a one-stop solution for all their shopping needs. Live up to the promise of selling anything from pin to a penthouse. Study your target market and make a realistic assessment of the supermarket shopping cart and its contents. Research and stock-up on best selling brands. Plan your merchandise accordingly, so that customers get confident of shopping for quality products from their preferred supermarket chains.
- Make Both Online And Offline Navigation Easier
In the case of online supermarkets, keep the website clutter free and ensure users do not have any navigation issues. They must be able to filter and refine according to shopping parameters of price, delivery time, gender and age. In the case of physical stores, convenient display of items is a driving force catering to customer loyalty. Ensure that shoppers do not have to run from pillar to post and arrange inventory logically. In case of supermarket chains, it is also a matter of branding to display in a uniform fashion across multiple outlets. Furthermore, ease of accessibility is also linked to customer loyalty. Plan the geographical spread of the supermarket chain after a research of shopper population density and concentration.
- Avoid Out Of Stock Situations With Automated Inventory Control
When their preferred supermarket guarantees availability of items, through the year, customers will love to shop with your brand forever. The trade-off between inventory carrying cost and ordering cost is a crucial decision-making area, requiring continuous coordination between the purchases and the marketing departments. Analytics play an important role in predicting customer shopping patterns and in stocking the shelves in a timely manner.
- Have A Customer-Friendly Returns And Replacement Policy In Place
Formulate a strong policy on returns and replacement. It can increase customer retention considerably when they find that they can return items due to sizing or any other issues. With regards to replacement, every case must be treated with empathy and integrity so that the interests of the shoppers are given prime importance. When the mistake is on the side of the supermarket, do not hesitate to replace and apologize.
- QC Is The Heart Of Supermarket Loyalty
The commitment to quality is the best tool to enhance customer retention. Since a majority of products dealt by supermarket chains include perishables with limited shelf life, care must be taken to ensure that all storage and handling instructions are met to dot. When receiving inventories, strictest standards of QC are to be maintained, so that cases of quality related complaints are kept at minimum.
- Supermarket Image And Brand Building
Branding is not about PR and advertising or about logos and taglines. It is about delivering customers a uniform and consistent experience every time they shop in your store. It is the feel-good factor that customers enjoy whenever they visit your physical store or the online portal. The brand image can be built only when customers appreciate and understand your marketing communication.
- Be Innovative In Rewarding Loyalty
The modern day supermarket frequenter is plagued with loyalty cards from a number of stores. For your brand to stand out and encourage repurchase, make the redemption time bound so that the customer is committed to buy more. Accumulation of points must result in cumulative advantages, rendering switching costs higher. Instead of the regular free gifts and discounts, do something innovative. For example, a frequent buyer of pet products can be given a free consultation for his pet with a vet.
- Strengthen Retention marketing With Technology
This is the age of wearable technology. Maintaining frequent communication over smart phones by way of apps, messages and mails will result in customer retention. Providing customer service over social media is another interactive way of furthering customer satisfaction. Use intuitive technology to catch the key trends in your customer’s shopping activity and make every supermarket a personalized experience.
- Hold Contests And Build Fun
This is another bond building initiative that will include an element of fun and excitement. Hold contest and include gamification concepts to make the games challenging. Every gaming experience will be an engagement opportunity, indirectly incentivising the customer to purchase more and earn more rewards. Popularize the contests both online and offline.
- Offer Free Samples And Trials For New Products
When trying out new brands, your existing customers can prove to be brand ambassadors. Offer them free trials and have them rate and review the product. This will increase engagement with customers and will also result in great pre-launch publicity for the new range of products.
- Offer Referral Incentives
Have a scheme of “refer-a-friend” in place and link such gestures to sizeable rewards. This is also an excellent way of maintaining frequent communication with customers. It is an easy way of building fresh sales and also keeping the existing customers incentivised. With every reference, both the customer satisfaction index and the client base expands.
Customers love the supermarket loyalty programs and almost every person next door is a part of one program or other. Consistent customer retention can be achieved only if such programs promise a combination of both financial and non-financial incentives for the loyal shopper.