We Are Sunshine

Keep Customers Coming Back

Wednesday, June 5th, 2024

One of the biggest questions all small businesses ask is, “How do I get customers to keep coming back?” The key is customer service. With so many large and small companies offering many of the same services and products, it’s the personalized customer service you provide that will stand out to customers.

In “Small-business Q&A: Ways to keep customers coming back,” Ron Consolino, a management counselor and contributor for the Houston Chronicle, writes that personalized customer service is the biggest factor for returning business and demonstrates how to use that personalized service to distinguish your business from the competition.

His first piece of advice: “Never let your clients forget who you are. Use every method possible to keep yourself in the front of their minds.” He suggests doing little things for them, like writing personal thank you, birthday, anniversary or other special occasion cards. When a customer knows you’ve gone out of your way for them, it will stand out. Knowing a customer’s birthday is an easy start to personalization because you can have them fill out information cards at their first visit. Send them a card for their birthday, and maybe a coupon to be used for a free tan or half off lotion purchase.

Or, even better, personalize it so they know you’ve taken notice of them. For example: “Dear Jenny, we at Suntan Salon wanted to wish you a happy 25th birthday by giving you this coupon for a half off your next purchase of Suntan Salon #5 lotion and a free tan in our level 3 stand up booth! We know these are your favorites, and we hope you enjoy!” Taking an interest in a client’s activities and purchases at your salon is a touching gesture. It will show that client that they are valued and not just a number.

If you haven’t seen a customer in a month or more, let them know you miss seeing them and send them a promotion for a free tan. Draw them in and find out why they’ve been away. “When a customer stops doing business with you, consider it unacceptable. Find out why it happened and work to prevent it from happening again,” says Consolino. It’s most likely that a customer won’t initially tell you why they are upset or disappointed about service they receive, so being able to get this feedback from them can be extremely helpful. If one customer is upset about something, it’s likely there are others equally upset.

Finally, the ability to follow through is the biggest factor to customer retention. “Deliver what you promise. Delivering a product or service that disappoints is the fastest way to lose your customers,” says Consolino. Working with customers to achieve their tanning goals is imperative, and making sure you do your utmost best is key to setting your salon apart from the one down the street. You and your employees are not clerks, you are skin care professionals. Make that fact known to your clients and you won’t be disappointed in the results.