Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Selling Points: Getting Repeat Buyers

While most retail marketing focuses on increasing visitor traffic and converting visitors into buyers, it is important to give equal attention to customer retention. Repeat buyers are the mainstay of many a small producer and critical cushion in an economic downturn.

Encourage visitors and customers in your Booth to register, join, preorder, or vote so that you have their name and contact information. This will allow you to alert them to special sales, new products, harvest dates or changes in your location.

The goal, of course, is to convert one-time customers into regular shoppers who will frequent your Booth often and allow you to personalize the shopping experience.

Here's four effective marketing strategies for attracting repeat customers:

1. Newsletters. A successful newsletter should have interesting or useful content related to your products, such as recipes or topical news bits. Ask shoppers to subscribe at your Booth. Offer a discount or a chance at a prize when subscribing.

2. Preorders. With preorders, you have first chance at a second sale to the customer.

3. Subscriptions. Customers subscribe to or sign up for an ongoing round of purchases that the producer can act on without further permission. Community Supported Agriculture farms operate on this method.

4. Exclusive Offers, and Promotions. Offer customers an opportunity to get advance notice or special discounts when they join your "club."

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