Let’s face it, getting a online sale isn’t an easy task. In fact, it’s expensive, it take a lot of hard work and you sometimes wonder why you even bothered in the first place when your customer spends a small amount and you barely break even on an order.
Well, stop right there! Slap yourself around the face and listen up! You need to start thinking longer-term instead of just in the short term. Let me explain.
Many businesses are so focused on getting new customers and chasing the next buck that they forget about the low hanging fruit that is dangling right in front of their eyes. They tend to look at every marketing campaign or pound spent with a short-term view where return-on-investment over a period of a week determines the success of the campaign. This is a very shortsighted view and it certainly doesn’t reflect the success of a campaign. You need to think about the bigger picture and how much that customer will be worth in the future.
For example, paid search campaigns are now horrifically expensive and very few are deemed worthwhile. It may have cost you £3 to acquire your customer and they may have only spent £3 with you today, so once you take off the cost of goods and the postage, you are actually running at a loss. However, the fact that they have made a purchase with you means you have overcome the largest barrier to make them a longer-term customer – trust.
Trust is a big deal these days and cannot be underestimated. Amazon has gone to extreme lengths to provide the best prices and the best services in order to cement itself as the go-to place when you need to buy electricals, games, consoles, healthcare products and more. We buy so much from Amazon because we now trust them to deliver what we need and usually next day, with Amazon Prime.
Once you have achieved the first purchase with them you then need to push on and generate more value from that customer because they trust you. You need to treat them like like your own family by offering them awesome products at great value and delivered with amazing customer service. Consumers are seeking out great customer experiences and this is one of the key reasons why retailer John Lewis has out-performed it competitors in recent years. They offer a no quibble, money-back guarantee and they train their staff to really understand their customers and the products they sell.
With the right attention that first £3 acquisition cost can lead to hundreds, if not thousands of pounds in repeat business. To understand the value of campaigns you should track the source of where you customers have come from and work out how much you needed to spend to acquire them. From there, you should monitor the future spend of those customers over the following 6-9 months and then re-assess the most profitable customers and where they came from. You then follow that formula to find more of the same.
Don’t forget about those people who have spent their hard-earned money with you. They could be responsible for substantial online sales later down the line. Treat them like your family and take them with you on your journey.