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BizReport : Loyalty Marketing : May 25, 2007

How to build online customer loyalty

Complex is probably the best way to describe the loyalty of an online shopper. However, knowing what helps to develop a loyal online following is a key for online marketers. A recent study sheds some light on the subject.

by Kristina Knight

Stuart Frankel, president of DoubleClick Performics said, "Seven out of ten consumers shop multiple websites before making an online purchase to find the site offering the best deal."

With all that shopping around, is there a chance to develop a repeat pattern with online shoppers?

According to the Consumer Loyalty Survey from DoubleClick Performics/e-tailing group, nearly half of the study respondents said they were "somewhat loyal" to online merchants based on a combination of "value, superior service and product mix".

The survey also found that 70% of online shoppers belong to loyalty or frequent buyer programs and 42% use comparison engines to compare prices before buying. Online shoppers feel that member discounts and members-only specials are very important to online shopping (53%). Online shoppers are also apt to shop several stores, looking for the best price, before buying.

What this survey means for e-tailers is that special offers and discounted pricing are as important, if not more so, that easy navigation of a website.

Creating a members-only club and sending emails about special savings or heavily discounted items are probably the best ways to keep and grow a loyal online customer base.

Tags: customer loyalty, customer satisfaction, e-commerce

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  • The loyalty of any shopper, not just those online, is complex. It probably has to do more with the product category than anything else.

    In Asia, people shop intensively before buying laptops for instance. Like in most countries , in every Asian city you would find a number of buildings housing nothing but computer and hardware shops. This makes it really convenient for those who want to shop and compare prices and features. It is hard to say whether this habit of shopping for computers is an innate buyer characteristics or it was created by the convenience created by the market.

    Internet obviously make it a lot easier for people to compare price and features. It will certainly increasing the "shopping" activities realting to "shopping products"

    There are certain categoies of products and services like a hairstylist, or skin care that people generally greater loyalty to or do not usually shop around for. It will certainly be interesting to hear stories about such category of products becoming shopping products because of the internet.



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