If your customer retention rate keeps you up at night, we understand.

The thought of losing business is nothing short of nerve wracking. But there are a few customer retention strategies — that if implemented correctly — can keep your customers returning for years to come. It’s definitely not a science, but if you follow our 6 steps below, you’ll see a noticeable uptick in your business.

Be the Expert

Customer retention is all about making your business indispensable to your customers. And positioning yourself as an “expert” in your field is one way to make that happen. Depending on what kind of business you run, the difficulty of this task may vary. But finding that hook or niche for you to capitalize on will make all the difference. Let’s say you run a nail salon in New York City, how are you supposed to stand out in a sea of salons? If you have a few nail technicians that specialize in nail art, publicize that fact! If you don’t, hire one. Regardless of your business, finding that niche, expertise or skill that no one can compete with, will not only increase your business but will keep you top of mind.

Build Trust

Building trust might sound like an obvious way to keep your customer retention rate high, but it’s so crucial that it’s worth mentioning. Having trust in a business can mean different things for different people, everything from transparency in your pricing or ingredients to selling a quality product that will last. Take some time and make a list of how you can improve trust in your business. Better yet, be upfront and ask your customers. The feedback you receive will be invaluable in creating your personalized customer retention plan, and the patrons you ask will be impressed by your candor.

A colorful taco truck parked on the side of the road.

Become Unique (Or Irreplaceable)

Think about a few of your favorite businesses. You most likely have options, so what is it about the businesses you frequent that keep you returning? Most likely, there is something unique about them or something that makes them irreplaceable. Whether it’s the to-die-for chipotle mayo or the two-hour dry cleaning, there is something about these businesses that you just can’t live without. So whether it’s amazing and creative taco combinations or brightly-themed dressing rooms, finding that special sauce for your business is worth the trial and error.

A great way to highlight your business’s uniqueness to patrons is to provide a level of customer service that will Blow. Them. Away. Need a few suggestions? Check out our post on 26 Inexpensive Customer Appreciation Ideas.

Solve a Problem

Easing a customer pain point is also another surefire way to retain customer loyalty. Sending out a customer survey can help you pinpoint what you can offer to help simplify the lives of your customers. So whether this is extending business hours on certain days, expanding your area of delivery or taking custom orders, pinpointing what your customers need and providing it will allow you to demonstrate your worth and commitment to your customers.

SEE ALSO: How to Create the Customer Loyalty Your Small Business Needs

Build a Killer Brand and Personality

Personality counts, and not just in the dating scene. Branding your business and developing its personality is not only one of the more fun aspects of running a business, but will also help you stand out from the crowd. So take the time to develop what you see as your business’s most interesting traits and incorporate those into your marketing. Social media can play a huge part in this, so make sure you take advantage of everything Facebook, Twitter and Instagram have to offer. If you need more direction when it comes to social media. Check out 5 Ways to Make Your Social Media Strategy More Effective.

A pink wall with framed cupcakes in a gold frame.

Quality, Quality, Quality

You’re probably already focusing on quality in your shop or business, but are you focusing on the quality of your customer’s experience? If you’re selling cookies you want to bake the most delicious chocolate chip ever, but the point of sale experience a customer has at your bakery is equally as important. If you make your bakery not just the best cookie in town, but the best environment and a place where customers want to spend their time, customer loyalty will follow. Think of quality as a package deal: A quality product plus quality service equals a retail home run.

Customer retention rate is an important aspect of any business and shouldn’t be taken lightly. Remember, nothing can substitute a quality product and exceptional customer service.

Sara Sugar

Sara Sugar

As Managing Editor at ShopKeep, a leading iPad Point of Sale System, Sara Sugar uses her distinguished journalism background to boil down small business and point of sale topics.