Startups emerge almost every week. Strangely, most of them hardly survive to celebrate their 5th anniversaries. This is of course, due to a number of factors that are sometimes beyond the control of the people behind a startup. Unfortunately, it is a trend that seems to affect e-commerce more than any other sector. What is more unfortunate is the fact that more often than not, the reasons e-commerce starts ups fail has a lot to do with how the brains behind the startups relate with their target market or existing clients. In simple terms, merchant relationships can be the difference between you and your successful counterparts. So how should you go about boosting merchant relationships? Here’s how.
Ongoing communication plays a vital role in developing effective merchant relations as it easily eliminates the possibility of misunderstandings. With that in mind, communicate effectively and as often as you can customers. You can schedule newsletters, surveys to find possible areas of improvement and thank you notes where possible. This will make your customers feel as part of a family that shows genuine concern. It will also help you identify and remove business related issues that may one day convince valuable merchants to take their business to your competitors.
Remember that frequent interaction does not have to be financial or technical in nature. As a matter of fact, providing existing and future customers with tailored and relevant content that helps them improve their experience with your services is just but one of the many ways you can use to maintain contact and build a strong relationship with them.
Providing value added solutions that address specific and even not so specific needs of your customers is a smart way of improving customer loyalty. Customers who feel their service providers understand their needs and provide prompt solutions to the challenges they face are far less likely to be easily tempted by discounts and lower prices. The customers eventually become valuable business partners. They make referrals and in the process, market your business.
Provide Ongoing Support
Of all reasons customers choose to break ties with a business, poor services stand at the very top. Unappreciated or indifferent servicing, negative treatment or simply being ignored are all examples of acts that either make up or contribute to poor services. What’s more, providing practical and hands of guidance for issues like PCI can have a positive effect on merchant satisfaction.
Always remember that customers who feel they have been left on their own or passed over to a third party often have little or no loyalty to their providers. They eventually get tempted to move on. With that in mind, provide solutions for your customers in a setting they are familiar with. Communicate with them too throughout a given process. Lastly, and most importantly, provide multiple means of both support and assistance where necessary.
Accept criticism and act on issues raised several times by different clients. This will cement their confidence in you and build a firm bond of loyalty. Be sure to also embrace innovative solutions to solve emerging technical challenges.