Boosting customer loyalty in times of digitization with the help of e-commerce apps
For many companies, it is time to strengthen the loyalty of their customers. Digitization brings with it a broader range of options. Quality and price become more transparent for customers. Consequently, customers compare more and change providers ever more often. Customer loyalty is increasingly difficult to activate, be it in the B2C or B2B segment. Pure loyalty programs and bonus programs are associated with high investments, most of which miss the mark and satisfy only point collectors and bargain hunters. Ultimately, the only thing increasing is the number of unused cards in people’s purses.
Loyalty has less to do with rational arguments, points, or discounts than with positive feelings: reliability, trust, appreciation, sympathy, and affection. Loyalty is like a good friendship. A loyal customer is almost like someone newly in love who mainly sees only the other person’s good sides and generously overlooks any small weaknesses. They like to leave good reviews, provide excellent testimonials, and attract new customers—completely free of charge.
So what creates loyal customers? Customer loyalty arises when a product or service significantly exceeds the customer’s expectations. In order to benefit from the inspiring added value, customer needs must be known and services designed around them. Customers expect creative accomplishments and extra services that also fit the brand and product range. Special buying experiences are a must. Customers don’t just need to receive individual offers but must also be able to increase their status. All this poses a special challenge in a time of rapid change. Any supplier who masters this challenge and who manages to inspire, is rewarded with the loyalty of their customers.
Inspiration is the essence of loyalty. Anyone who wants to inspire customers in the age of digitization must use data intelligently and develop their individual relationship with the customer. An e-commerce app is particularly well suited for this. Thanks to the widespread use of smartphones, they have already become a top-rate sales channel. E-commerce apps are handy, always available, and make customers’ lives easier. Companies that manage to design reliable, user-friendly, and smart e-commerce apps not only bind their customers, but also easily turn them into brand ambassadors who will recommend the company— thus achieving the main goal of customer loyalty-focused activities.
E-commerce apps also enable vendors to change their point of view and deliberately see the world through the customer’s eyes. They use the success factor “data”, seamlessly digitalize the relationship with the customer, and automate it as far as possible. With the help of professionally executed apps, they manage to remain aware of the customer benefits more permanently and adjust their products and services accordingly—a long-term competitive advantage in an increasingly fact-paced digital era.