There’s no denying that new customers are essential to growing your brand, especially as a small business owner or new entrepreneur. After all, new customers are a large part of growing your brand and validating your products. However, the next, and by-far the most profitable, step is converting those new shoppers into repeat customers.

Repeat customers are doing a lot more for your business than you think, and there’s a lot to gain from investing in them: not only are they the foundation of your customer base and necessary for maintaining a stable and profitable business, but repeat customers are actually responsible for 40% of ecommerce revenue. Although they equate to only 8% of all customers, repeat shoppers make a massive impact on your revenue stream. Also, keep in mind that happy customers can push organic growth through word-of-mouth, which will reduce the amount of money you funnel into customer acquisition.

So how do you turn a one-time shopper into a repeat customer? We’ll tell you!

Here are 5 tips to keep your customers coming back.

Keep it Personal

Even with an online-only business, there are ways to make interactions with your customers personal; customized email marketing is one way to achieve this. Klaviyo is an email marketing tool that allows you to personalize your interactions in various ways, including audience segmentation. Segmentation is a strategy that is used to tailor communication between your business and your consumers, by segmenting your audience into specific buckets, you’re able to cater emails and promotions to make your content as relevant as possible. This will give your customers the impression that you know them better than they think!


In this email promotion, Boathouse used segmentation to deliver an exclusive sale invitation to their VIP customers. Giving your customers access to exclusive rewards based on their loyalty with your company encourages them to stay loyal and remain in that VIP tier.

Keep Them Up To Date

Although the term “window shopping” may not seem entirely relevant to an online business, there is definitely a way to mimic the effect of large store signs that promote sales and store windows that showcase newest arrivals. Sending updates of exclusive stock, arrivals, sales, and promotions are all ways to reel new customers in and encourage old ones to return. This can be done through your social media platforms, email marketing, newsletters, and right on your website.

LB Email Subject Line
Little Burgundy Email

Little Burgundy does a great job with this. They are notorious for email marketing that promotes their sales and collaborations. They use clever subject lines that name-drop their most popular brands. With the eCommerce landscape growing, the best way to stay relevant and draw customers to your store is by promoting through all possible outlets with appealing messaging and minimizing the clicks to checkout.

Implement a Loyalty Program

The easiest and quickest way to increase customer retention is by implementing a loyalty program. This will allow you to reward your customers and incentivize them to return and spend those rewards. Through your program, your customers are able to earn points through purchases, by sharing your brand on social media, and more. You can also run promotions and send exclusive offers to long-term customers. Adding rewards for birthdays is also a nice touch and is always appreciated. Giving back to your shoppers will improve their relationship with your brand. This is because 64% of retailers believe their loyalty program is their best connection to their customers, and 69% of consumers are influenced by loyalty programs when deciding where to shop.

BH Points

Boathouse Canada is a great example of a successful rewards program. They allow customers to earn points several different ways, like for sharing on social media platforms, subscribing to their newsletter, and they even offer a sign-up bonus! They also reward customers based on dollar spent: every $1 spent is 10BH points. They also feature a rewards page on their website that outlines the ways to earn points and what these points equate to.

Research Your Competition

As a small business owner, and even as an established business, it’s always important to keep an eye on your competition or those you hope to be in competition with one day. Without keeping up-to-date on your competitors, it would be hard to know if you were in the same arena. Having this knowledge will allow you to stay ahead and take steps to distinguish your business from theirs.

Taking the steps above, if you have implemented a loyalty program and strategic email marketing, you’re already ahead of a store that has not!

Outbound Engine pull quote 2020

Make Your Customers Smile

Good customer service is a universal language in any business to consumer transaction. It can be the defining thing between a return shopper and a lost one. Although the definition of “good customer service” can differ from person to person, there are a handful of things that every consumer can appreciate when interacting with your store.

  1. Quick response rate
  2. User-friendly interface
  3. Easily accessible information
  4. Fast shipping
  5. Good quality products

Investing in your repeat customers will ultimately strengthen and grow your customer base, reduce the money spent on acquisition, and establish a great brand-to-consumer relationship where you can both benefit greatly.