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Customer loyalty is essential for any business. With more and more places to shop — not to mention the growing number of ways to shop — turning frequent shoppers into loyal customers may seem daunting. But with the right tools and the right approach, customer loyalty can become a natural part of your business and produce tangible results, including increased sales, word-of-mouth marketing, and a boost in brand image.
Here are a few ways you can build customer loyalty in your liquor or wine store — online and in-person.
Invest in customer service.
Customer service quality can make or break any business. While your products might stand out above your competitors, if your customers don’t have a good experience both in your store and online, they may not return. First and foremost, take the necessary steps to ensure your staff is polite and attentive to customers’ needs. Train them to give relevant recommendations to customers and make sure they are knowledgeable about each of the products you carry.
When it comes to your online presence, make your website easy to navigate so that your customers can quickly find the information and products that they care about. Consider investing in chatbots to help answer any questions customers may have while browsing. For questions that may require more assistance, create a streamlined way for customers to contact you, such as a support email address. If you begin to notice a theme in the types of questions, make an FAQ page to save both you and your customers some time.
Personalize the experience.
Customer profiles and email marketing are core elements of personalization that can have a major impact on the customer experience.
Customer profiles: Advanced POS systems like Square for Retail allow you to create customer profiles that can track purchase history via a customer’s information, such as a phone number. Keeping track of purchase history makes it easy to take note of customers’ favorite products and offer more personalized suggestions when upselling. With customer profiles, you’ll be able to know what each customer prefers when shopping for liquor and wine. This helps make it easier to upsell some more expensive brands that you think the customer may like depending on their previous purchases, both in-store and as they shop on your website.
Additionally, cross-selling products to complement their purchase can often create a more well-rounded experience for each customer. Buying tequila? Try this mixer with it, and don’t forget some limes on the side. Simple cross-sell recommendations like this during the checkout process on your website will show your customers that you’re paying attention and care about their experience, not just the purchase.
You also have the ability to take notes in your POS to help steer your engagement with them on their next visit, creating a sense of familiarity and making the customer feel valued.
Email marketing: Email marketing tools that create flexibility for customers can go a long way for personalization. By creating flexibility, you can allow customers to determine what type of emails they want to receive, opting in or out of certain types of wine, liquors, and events or promotions.
Craft the perfect email each time for your consumers by filtering your customer list into categories or items and sending segmented emails. Segmenting your emails can help increase your open rates and conversion rates, ensure that your consumers see the content that is most relevant to them, and avoid flooding them with irrelevant emails that may make them want to delete — or worse — unsubscribe.
With Square Marketing, you can build, send, and track email campaigns in no time. You can build lists by their favorite types of liquor or wine, how often they visit, where they live, and whether they shop with you in person or online — all from customer data within your Square account.
Create a loyalty program.
One of the best ways to build strong customer loyalty is to create a program for your customers that makes them feel like a true VIP.
With customer loyalty programs, points or rewards are offered to frequent shoppers to make it more compelling for them to visit your liquor or wine store repeatedly. It’s important to make it easy for your customers to sign up for these programs, so be sure to put information about your VIP program right on your website and create an effortless sign-up process.
It’s also important for your customers to earn their rewards in a timely manner or they’ll likely forget they’re enrolled in your loyalty program. For a loyalty program to be successful, you’ll want to make sure your loyal customers are able to cash in on some type of reward in 30 days or less.
Customer loyalty is driven by a personalized experience, so be sure to offer special gifts or promos for birthdays, anniversaries, and other special occasions. When you join in on these celebrations, your customers will feel like they’re seen as family.
There are a multitude of ways to show your most loyal customers a true VIP treatment. With liquor store marketing ideas and discounts, such as two for one deals or other valuable offers, you can effectively build customer loyalty for your business.
Offer eGift Cards
Square for Retail also makes it possible for you to offer Square eGift Cards for purchase on your website. eGift cards can make it easy for customers to buy and redeem them for your store. Not only is this a great way to encourage repeat business, but it also allows your customers to share your business with those they know and love.
Host events and tastings
Hosting events and tastings is another great liquor store marketing idea that allows you to engage with customers and promote your store. Consider hosting a wine pairing night, mixology classes that teach people how to mix drinks, or educational classes such as a virtual tour of a wine’s source region.
Use your website, social media, or marketing efforts as a way to publicize these events and tastings. For bigger events, you’ll want to showcase them on your homepage in the weeks prior. For minor events or a full list, you may want to think about adding a calendar to your website so customers can browse and mark down which events and tastings they’ll be able to attend.
Engage with shoppers on social media
In today’s market, we’re seeing more and more consumers use social media as much as search engines to search and discover new businesses. When customers create organic user-generated content (UGC) that incluedes your brand, engage with them and let them know you appreciate their support. Similarly, comments are your friend. Respond to comments and let customers know you see them. This two-way interaction can create positive feelings toward your business and deepen the relationship.
If you have users who are regulars in your comment section or when it comes to UGC, consider taking the relationship a step further and recruiting them as brand ambassadors to help promote your brand through posts of their own. Because they already love your store, they may be willing to share their experiences with friends and followers, tapping into their social networks to help you reach a wider audience.
Because social media can be a great tool to keep your business top of mind, use these platforms to announce promotions, events, new products, and more. This can help create seamless shopping experiences or immediate sign-ups for events, making your brand easy to navigate for customers.
You can also use your social media platforms to run contests or giveaways that will not only add to the excitement and interest in your business, but serve as a clever way to build your online audience.
Overall, building customer loyalty for your liquor or wine store is about creating a great customer experience from brand discovery to checkout and beyond. By leveraging the power of these liquor store marketing ideas, such as creating a loyalty program and improving your customer service — and using the suite of tools at your fingertips within Square for Retail—you can build a loyal customer base in no time that will keep coming back to shop with your small business.