It is well-known that there no longer is any brand loyalty. Unless you are Apple, customers will switch to your competitors if they offer something better or your customer service isn’t what they expect. In addition, the ability to buy anything and everything online increases the risk of identity theft and fraud.

To retain customers, many companies have put into place loyalty schemes. Although they do work, they cost businesses money, directly or indirectly. Yet, freebies and discount are not necessarily what will work best to keep your clients. Meaningful ‘gifts’, as opposed to financial rewards, will go a long way.

The gift of trust

Cybercrime is one of modern times’ plagues. The anonymity offered by the internet coupled with the amount of personal data we leave online make it the perfect medium for fraud. Whether you are a not-for-profit organisation or a retail business, customers want to be able to trust that you will do everything possible to keep their personal data from theft. Make sure that your payment systems follow the latest security standards, and invest into robust anti-hacking software.

But this isn’t all we mean by trust. People don’t want to find out that you sold their contact details to third parties which will then harass them with various offers. So show your customers that you respect them by only using their information for your own purposes.

The gift of ease

Contacting you should be easy, from being able to locate your contact details on your website quickly, to clear menu navigation and a healthy balance between automated and human support. The volume of phone calls may have reduced due to the number of communication channels available to customer, but it doesn’t mean that you can disinvest from your call centre, quite the opposite: the calls that you will receive will be the complex queries that customers aren’t able to resolve any other way and which will require specialists to deal with them.

The gift of quality

Customers want their queries to be addressed by competent staff. They don’t want to be put on hold while agents look for answers, they don’t want to be passed around, and they value companies which can resolve their issue first time, so invest in training and stand out from the crowd by offering outstanding phone support.