As an owner of a WooCommerce store, you must know that the store is not simply a sales platform; it is, in fact, a reflection of your company. Seasoned entrepreneurs find or create their niche in the market, set standards for the company, and focus their efforts on generating sales from new and old customers alike. These entrepreneurs understand the significance and power of customer loyalty.
It is statistically proven that retaining customers costs way less than acquiring new ones. This might seem like an obvious fact, but it goes a long way in targeting your product marketing campaigns. However, there is a thin line between up-selling your product to a regular customer and trying to force it upon them!
How often have you seen a customer turn away from a brand because they received one too many promotional emails or had a really bad experience with the support team? Quite often I bet.
Which is why today we discuss the ways and plugins to be used with WooCommerce for generating customer loyalty the right way!
- Adding the Personal Touch and Maintaining It!
- Setting Off the Discount Trigger
- Listening and Learning
- Comment and Recommend
- Pack A Surprise
Adding the Personal Touch and Maintaining It!
Earning customer loyalty does not happen overnight. It all starts the first time a visitor lands on your website. It is necessary to initiate contact with your potential customer and maintain regular follow-ups to keep the lead live.
To this end, email marketing is a great asset when used right. The one important advantage of email marketing over social media is that it gives you the opportunity to connect with your customer on a personal level. Media networking websites are by default intended to target a global audience; however, nobody pays a lot of attention to generic messages. Emails help you draft more personalized content that goes a long way in building the foundation for a long-lasting vendor-customer relationship.
WordPress has several email marketing plugins and integrations that let you generate a database and send regular emails and newsletters. Some of these include:
1. MailChimp for WordPress
MailChimp is an independent email marketing system that can be used to send bulk emails and newsletters to 2000 or more customers at a time. You can create multiple databases and start email marketing campaigns, targeting customers by their interest, recent purchases, and other relevant information.
To use MailChimp for your WooCommerce store, you have to first create a MailChimp account and then integrate it with WordPress using the MailChimp for WordPress plugin. MailChimp provides an independent hosting service, which stores all your data on their server, leaving your core WordPress website light.
The MailChimp membership has a freemium pricing plan with increasing subscription cost as the number of subscribers/emails increases. The basic version of the plugin is also available for free, while the premium plugin is priced at $59 for a yearly license.
2. MailPoet Newsletters
MailPoet Newsletters is a comprehensive email marketing solution that features beautiful email templates, drag-and-drop newsletter builders, scheduled sending of posts, and more in a Freemium module. The Pro version has some added features like a Subscriber Statistics Dashboard, SPAM score testing, and others, starting at a price of $99/year.
MailPoet Newsletters gets added on top of the WordPress core and sends emails from within the WordPress Dashboard itself.
A word of caution! You are targeting an existing customer pool here. So sending only promotional emails or updates about the products on your store can be detrimental in the long run. A better idea is to send out emails that increase their knowledge base, help them understand the tips and tricks of the trade, show how your loyalty programs have an advantage over others, and so on.
Setting Off the Discount Trigger
Everybody loves a nice discount. You probably already offer some of your products yourselves. However, a generic, flat discount that is available to the entire world holds no appeal for your regular customers; a special discount that only they can use does!
Personalization is key here. Setting up customer-specific offers is a tried and tested strategy for loyalty marketing. These incentives not only encourage customers to return to your store to complete the purchase but also help create an emotional appeal.
WooCommerce does not have a built-in functionality for setting different prices for the same product for different customers. Here are two plugins that can help you out with the same:
3. Customer Specific Pricing
Customer Specific Pricing lets you add variable pricing based on user and user roles. This can be extended to Groups and Product Quantities as well. For instance, if you have the user roles Guest and Regular, you can assign a specific product price to every customer listed under these user roles in one go. Similarly, you can create group plans like Silver, Gold, Platinum, etc. And assign variable prices to each of these.
One unique functionality is that you can vary the price according to the product quantity being purchased. For example, the price of the product can be different for a person buying two products and a person buying 50!
Customer Specific Pricing starts from a price of $25 for a Single Site license per year. A Lifetime License for $129 is available as well.
4. Dynamic Pricing
Dynamic Pricing is WooCommerce’s own plugin that can be used to add bulk discounts, user-based pricing, category and role-wise pricing. It can also be used to configure additional discounts on purchase of a fixed number of items. For instance, if a person purchases 3 objects from the store, an additional discount of 15% is offered on the purchase of the fourth product.
Dynamic pricing is priced at a yearly license of $129 for one site.
Listening and Learning
An important part of earning the customers’ loyalty is listening to them. Get in touch with every customer who has made at least three or four purchases on your store to get their feedback. You can conduct a survey, ask them for suggestions, or encourage them to post reviews. And once you get their responses, make sure that you implement some of their ideas, wherever possible. True, it will not always be feasible to incorporate all the suggestions you receive, nevertheless, just letting your customer base know that you are listening makes a huge difference.
There are many specific plugins on WordPress that can be used to generate feedback, conduct a survey, add reviews, etc. Alternatively, you can also use customized contact forms for each of these functions. Some plugins that can help here are:
5. YITH WooCommerce Advanced Reviews
Created by the popular YIThemes, the YITH WooCommerce Advanced Reviews plugin adds the complete review and rating functionality to the e-store. The premium plugin costs $79 per year for a single site. This plugin can be used to request feedback from your customers as well. The final call to show/hide reviews is the administrator’s one.
6. Product Reviews PRO
Product Reviews PRO by WooCommerce is another comprehensive review and feedback plugin that can be displayed in an Amazonesque format. This plugin also lets users add videos or photos in the review. In addition, the administrator can create an optional survey after the purchase, to get customer feedback. The plugin is available at $79 for a single site, yearly license.
7. Gravity Forms
With a wide range of form fields, layouts, and styles, Gravity Forms is one of the best contact form plugins for WordPress. There are several templates available for single and multi-page forms, which can be used to create a dynamic review and feedback forms for WooCommerce. The plugin does have a slightly steep learning curve, but the extensive documentation offsets it somewhat. The pricing plans for Gravity Forms start from $39/year for a personal license.
WPForms is touted to be the most beginner-friendly contact form plugin for WordPress. The plugin boasts of a drag-and-drop form builder where the creator can add fields quickly and easily. Other features of the plugin include conditional logic fields, MailChimp integration, payment gateway compatibility, and more. The plugin is priced between $39-$499 for the Basic to Lifetime licenses.
The advantage of integrating a contact form plugin is that two functionalities, contact form generation, and review/feedback generation, can be availed of simultaneously. However, unlike review and rating plugins, they cannot add a star-based rating feature to the store.
Comment and Recommend
Customer appreciation is an integral part of customer loyalty generation. Every great suggestion from your clients deserves due recognition. Commend them for their loyalty, and the customers respond. Credit them for their contribution, and they’ll stick with you forever! One of the ways of proclaiming your appreciation is through social media, posting blogs or articles on various platforms like Facebook and Twitter.
Plugins like Social Media Share Buttons and Social Icons (Regular and Plus versions) can be used to integrate the WooCommerce store with these platforms and post content.
Over time, as people browse through your store and make purchases, there emerges a pattern in their way of thought and perusal. Tracing these patterns and adding recommendations accordingly has a high chance of closing more sales. Remember that impulse buy on Amazon from the ‘Suggested for You’ list? That’s it exactly! WordPress gives you several options to add an Amazon-like recommendation bar to your WooStore. One of the plugins used is:
9. Recommendation Engine
Recommendation Engine works out-of-the-box, reviewing customer history and product purchases to dynamically populate relevant suggestions to customers. Populating relevant results lets regular customers find what they are looking for with ease, which in turn increases their affinity towards the website. The plugin is available for $79/year for a single site license.
Pack A Surprise
You have probably heard of ‘Surprise and Delight’ campaigns that have worked wonders for customer loyalty. Believe it or not, they actually work. A gift can make someone’s day, especially if that gift is completely unexpected. Customers love the feel-good feeling that comes with receiving a gift box customized especially for them. The memory gets associated with the brand, giving customer loyalty a veritable boost.
To create product bundles and gift boxes on WooCommerce, you can use:
10. Custom Product Boxes for WooCommerce
The Custom Product Boxes plugin lets you bundle multiple products into one box and send it as a single product. Box sizes can be fixed at your end and products can be added based on the customers’ areas of interest. In addition, there is also an option to send the bundle as a gift, which completes your requirement. Custom Product Boxes is available at a price of $59/year for a single site.
This completes the list of 10 plugins that can be used to generate customer loyalty on your WooCommerce store. However, earning customer loyalty requires dedicated efforts over a long period of time. Apart from external plugins that you use, customer affinity is largely dependent on the service they receive at your store.
- Are their queries being addressed quickly and effectively?
- Do they have to search for a long time before they find what they are looking for?
- Are they receiving quality support from your team?
These and many other questions should be asked regularly if the standard you have set for your store is to be maintained. The true measure of any store’s success is two-fold. One is the revenue you earn; two, your customers’ opinion.
Have you implemented loyalty marketing in your store? What other methods would you suggest to increase customer loyalty? Let us know in the comments section below!
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