Customers are the epicenter of commerce, nowadays. Their say can make or break a business’s backbone. This is why it is important for a business to cultivate a meaningful and mutually beneficial relationship with its customers. There are many tried-and-tested ways to do that. One of the best avenues is online. Yes, the internet connects the whole world, transforming it into a global village. You can talk to your relatives from across continents in real-time. The possibilities are endless!
When a business transitions online, it can transcend barriers of time and space, and reach out to its target audience in the best manner. Here are a few ways the internet helps businesses build long-lasting relationships with customers.
Brick and mortar businesses have always held a unique value. However, they don’t stand a chance against the digital, hyper-advanced brands that sweep the market clean with their virtual offerings. Times have changed. People are no longer interested in heading out to their nearest shopping hubs to buy things physically. Instead, they prefer to quickly hop online on their connected devices and shop in an e-marketplace, which supports online money transactions and delivers their goods safely to their doorsteps in no time.
So, the internet acts like an open field, where businesses and customers can find each other and intermingle. With the help of the internet, businesses can:
- Set up shop digitally in the form of a website – complete with an attractive landing page, an “About Us” page, a products catalog page, and a seamless checkout system, etc.
- Incorporate the most eye-catching graphics to make their site stand out and use colors that memorably tell the brand’s story.
- Develop a user-friendly interface to convert random browsers into loyal customers, etc.
On the other side of the coin, online consumers, whether with a buying intent or not, can explore different businesses and shop from their favorite brands in a matter of a few clicks. This is how the internet powers the e-commerce store model and links businesses with new prospects every day.
Online Customer Support
Business-customer relationships are dictated by how the business-customer interactions go. This is where a business’s customer support truly shines. Customer service and support is the unit of a business organization that handles customer queries, requests, complaints, and all aspects of frontline communication. Internet connectivity enables businesses to provide stellar customer support to users, buyers, leads, prospects, and old clients to achieve the highest form of customer satisfaction.
Customer satisfaction occurs when businesses assist their customers without delay, resolve their issues and leave them happier than ever. Click on this link to witness amazing online customer support of a cable company in action. There are several techniques that businesses can utilize to make their customer support high-performing. For instance, they can:
- Integrate a live chat button on their website to help users with their queries on spot.
- Deploy an AI chatbot to listen to customer opinions, remarks, and feedback around the clock, and then channel it to the right department.
- Set a professional business phone number in place so customers can call directly.
So on and so forth.
Some businesses also aid their customers by creating a self-help portal on their customer service page. This self-help portal can list DIY tutorials, how-to guides, and common FAQs, which users can read up on and solve their problems themselves. Thus, the internet empowers businesses to facilitate their customers online and nurture satisfying relationships.
Everybody loves special treatment. It’s a part of human nature. So, consumers gladly rally behind a business that favors them, values their existence, and shows appreciation and gratitude in the form of exciting perks. Fortunately, the internet enables businesses to develop strong relationships with their customers through loyalty programs. What are loyalty programs? Loyalty programs are like exclusive clubs. Whether you are an old customer or a new one, you can join such a premium club to win:
- Extra benefits
- Purchase points
- Gift cards
- Anniversary deals, etc.
Through loyalty programs, businesses reward customers for their loyalty to the brand. By doing this, they encourage repeated purchases, ensure higher retention, and even attract new leads to the proposition. Some brands go the extra mile and send gifts to their loyal customers with celebratory messages and personalized cards on birthdays, holidays, and more. Other companies waive off certain fees when a customer signs up online. Thus, the internet allows businesses to please their customers and increase revenue, thereby.
Social media is the talk of the town, these days, and for all the right reasons. It is a giant networking hub, which connects the entire world and displays trending news in its feed. Any business hoping to prosper should take complete advantage of social media and everything it has to offer. Social media is the place you go to if you are looking for new customers, or expecting to interact with your current lot. Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok are some of the most significant platforms to publicize your company story, advertise your unique product/service, market your brand, keep an eye on competitors and directly come into contact with your customers for eliciting feedback or more.
Businesses can also use different modes of social engagement, provided they have a good internet connection to back this effort. They can:
- Launch a limited time product
- Hop on a live video with followers
- Team up with a popular influencer
- Start a viral hashtag trend
- Invite customers to an exclusive event
- Create a contest with prizes
- Spread the word about their brand through re-posting user-generated content, etc.
The sky is the limit! This is how the internet and social media bring businesses and customers closer together.
In short, the internet opens doors to new opportunities for businesses to touch the hearts of their customers and strengthen relationships with them. It also helps customers to connect deeply with brands and to achieve the highest form of fulfillment through their interaction.