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Published February 26th 2018

8 Ways to Improve Your Post-Purchase Customer Experience

Here are some excellent ways to keep in touch with your customers post-purchase to encourage retention, increase sales, and improve your brand reputation.

Ecommerce brands are missing a trick when it comes to continuing the conversation with customers after their purchase. A lot of companies focus so much on achieving sales conversions that they neglect to consider the benefits of a post-purchase marketing strategy.

Customer Behaviour

As highlighted in our recent guide to post conversion marketing, after we purchase something there are a number of emotions that we may experience:

  • Excitement at having something new
  • Hope that we’ve made the right decision
  • Anticipation of receiving our product
  • Concern that we’ve over or underspent

Understanding the psychology behind customer behaviour is not only interesting (if you’re a super geek like me) but it reveals important opportunities within the customer journey. Marketers can use this information to give their brand purpose beyond the sale and to build trust and loyalty with their customer. What do we see as a result? Higher levels of customer retention and hopefully a growth in brand advocates.

And the statistics always speak for themselves when it comes to acquisition VS retention:

  • It can cost anything from 5 to 25 times more to acquire a new customer than to retain one
  • Increasing retention rates by just 5% could help increase profits by anything from 25% to 95%

What’s interesting (and mind boggling), is that only 18% of businesses have a focus on retention.

The good news is that with a little consideration and some simple technology you can have a post-purchase marketing strategy up and running in no time. So here are 8 ways you can improve your post-purchase customer experience right now:

1. Show you care

Show your customer that you value their custom. It only takes a simple ‘thank you’ but these two words can really make an impact on your customer’s post-purchase experience and help build a longer term relationship.

2. Refunds and returns

Help reduce post-purchase anxiety by ensuring your customer is fully aware of your refund policy and returns process. Being transparent about this will build trust with your customer as it shows your brand isn’t all about sales, and that you understand your customers’ needs.

ASOS do a great job of signposting this in their order confirmation email that includes a ‘Need Help?’ button. This then takes the customer through to their customer care page.

The order confirmation screen for ASOS

3. ‘How-to’ guides

Once your customer has purchased your product, you want to ensure they can enjoy it. A simple ‘how-to’ guide can facilitate this and reduce the risk of returns from frustrated customers who gave up trying to work it out.

This can be done in a number of ways. You could include an infographic in your email, embed a video guide or direct them to a written guide on your website.

4. Product care tips

Similar to the above, the same intention here is to ensure your customer is engaging with their product but also getting value from their purchase. Help them prevent their purchase from wearing out quickly with an informative email packed with product care tips.

5. Product satisfaction feedback

A great way to improve customer experience is to get feedback from your customers on the products they’ve purchased. Let the customer know that you value their opinion and that it will help improve your product line, as Marks and Spencer have done in the example below.

Keep in mind that the time frame around reviews will differ according to what type of product they’ve purchased. If someone purchases a shirt, they’re likely to try it on right away. However, an item such as a computer might need to be used several times before the customer is ready to leave a review.

Marks and Spencer review page

6. Replenishment reminders

Replenishment emails are automated emails that are sent to customers when their product is about to run out so they can re-order. They’re useful for all sorts of products from makeup to pet food and are low effort – they can be fired out automatically with little ongoing management.

This simple attention to detail enhances the customer experience by offering convenience and makes your brand a source of reliability.

Clinique add a little humour in their example below:

A Clinique email campaign

7. Reward loyalty

Go beyond the thank you and demonstrate that you value their custom by inviting customers to be part of your loyalty programme.

Email them with an invitation to join and lay out the benefits, be they an exclusive offer, VIP access to sales, or bonus points on purchases.

8. Complementary product recommendations

Getting as much information about your customer as possible is going to be very helpful in building a better relationship with them. But even if you have very limited information, the item they’ve just purchased means you can now send them an email with recommendations on complimentary products.

There may be other items of clothing, for example, to help them complete their look. It might be something within the same product range such as a skincare routine. Or maybe other food items so they can create a complete meal or recipe.

The options are endless and will provide your customer with convenience and inspiration.

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