4 ways to retain local customers with mobile

5 min read
Alexa Lemzy

Businesses large and small aren’t just using mobile to increase sales and gain new customers. They’re also using mobile marketing strategies to help retain local customers.

Why? Mobile is a very valuable medium for both businesses and customers. First, it’s a convenient way to interact — for them and you. And it allows you to collect priceless data quickly and easily, enhancing the success of your marketing, which can increase customer loyalty.

Here are four effective ways to court your loyal customers on their mobile devices.

1. A mobile-optimized website

First things first: Is your website responsive? The majority of web searches (up to 60 percent, globally) now come from mobile devices. And since 2015, Google has been using mobile compatibility in its algorithms to determine your search ranking. That means that if your business’s site isn’t optimized for mobile devices, customers will have a harder time finding you.

Not only that, customers expect to be able to access your website on their smartphones to do product searches and price comparisons, and to get store information like location, phone number and hours.

To fully appreciate how much a mobile-friendly website can impact customer retention, consider these stats:

  • 74 percent of shoppers are more likely to give repeat business to businesses with mobile-friendly sites.
  • 61 percent of shoppers will abandon a site if it isn’t mobile-friendly.

Editor’s note: GoDaddy’s New Website Builder was designed with mobile in mind. It features a mobile editor so you can build and update your website on your smartphone or tablet anytime, anywhere.

2. Mobile apps

Retail Local Customers Starbucks App

Apps can help you retain local customers for many reasons. First, they allow you to track important data easily. That means you can see what users click on, what they buy, which ads they respond to and more. This information can be broken down by demographics (age, gender), allowing you to send targeted messages based on users’ interactions with your app.

Apps also track location so you can send geo-targeted promotions to those who are within range of your business. Having all of this information available to you makes it possible to send the right message to the right person at the right time.

Still not convinced? Customers spend three to four times longer using a mobile app than they do when visiting a mobile site. This allows businesses the opportunity to market themselves in a way that maximizes the user’s interest.

In other words, mobile apps aren’t about convincing a customer to try your product or service but about solidifying the customer relationship that’s already been established.

One example is the Starbucks’ mobile app. It offers customers a lot of benefits, but most important, it allows them to collect and redeem rewards points. Apps that reward loyalty keep customers coming back.

Check out this post to learn about must-have features for your business’s mobile app.

3. Social media marketing

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and other social media platforms can help you connect with local patrons via their mobile devices. In fact, 56 percent of customers who use social media to contact a brand say they feel a stronger connection with that brand.

Make sure your social media accounts not only promote deals and offers, but also make it easy for customers to find and contact your business.

When viewing your social media profiles, customers should be able to easily:

  • View your hours.
  • Call by simply pushing a button.
  • Find you, meaning your address needs to be listed prominently and accurately.

Don’t forget that creating a social media presence comes with responsibility. Your customers will contact you through these channels, and it’s important to offer quick, helpful responses to maintain good customer relationships.

4. SMS campaigns

Sending SMS (short message service) texts is an effective solution for businesses looking to retain local customers. For example, creating an SMS loyalty campaign that sends exclusive discounts to members can help increase customer retention. Or you can send personalized texts based on purchase history, location and preferences.

Text messaging is also a convenient way to provide customer service.

It’s efficient, with 99 percent of text messages being opened. Three SMS customer service ideas for small businesses include:

  • Appointment reminders. If your business is appointment-based, this simple service can help decrease the number of no-shows.
  • Tips and advice. Prove your value to customers by offering information that will help them have the best experience with your brand possible.
  • Customer service responses. Fielding questions or concerns via text gives customers a convenient way to have problems solved quickly.

Put mobile to work to retain local customers

Using these mobile marketing strategies can help you keep local patrons happy and loyal. Start by optimizing your website for mobile devices (or at the very least your contact and product pages). Then take it further by using SMS for marketing and customer service, developing a mobile app, and leveraging social media.