11 Best Customer Retention Strategies & Use Cases to Drive Sales in 2023

Alex Danchenko

Crafting effective customer retention strategies is not a one-size-fits-all endeavor. Each industry has unique considerations to keep in mind. For instance, a win-back email may not be ideal for a loan shark, but a food delivery app offering a free birthday dessert can work wonders. Getting a new customer is often easier than retaining an existing one, but you will hardly go far with using such an approach. 

Developing a successful customer retention strategy is a complex task that requires careful thought and implementation. You can sit for hours concocting your ideal plan, or you can read the article, where all of them are comprehensively combined in one place by our expert team. If you find the second option more appealing, read on to find out more.

What is Customer Retention?

For those unfamiliar with the concept, we have a simple explanation for what customer retention is: it is a metric that shows the likelihood that customers will keep using your services in the future. To increase this metric, companies should concentrate their strategies and efforts to make customers keep on buying from them or turning to their expertise. Don’t mix it up with customer acquisition, which focuses on attracting new customers. Customer retention centers around nurturing and maintaining relationships with those who have already made in-app purchases or somehow engaged with the brand.

How to Calculate Customer Retention Rate?

To determine the degree of your customers’ loyalty and how it affects business conversion, you need a customer retention rate formula. It is rather simple:

1. Choose a specific timeframe. Decide on a monthly, quarterly, or yearly period for your calculation. This makes the comparisons easier.

2. Count the number of customers at the beginning and at the end.

3. Count the number of new customers acquired during the period.

4. Calculate the retention rate using the formula:

Calculation example

Let’s take the yearly calculation as an example. Say in January, you had 500 customers, in December, you had 429 customers remaining and 110 new ones (a total number of 539). Using the formula, we will get ((539 - 110) / 500) * 100 = 85.8% customer retention rate.

The higher the customer retention rate you get, the more loyal your customer base is. Simple as that!

Key Factors That Affect Retention Rate

Product/ Service Quality

When it comes to keeping customers around, there's no substitute for top-notch product or service quality. It's the secret sauce that leaves a lasting impression and keeps customers coming back for more.

Think about it — would you stick with a brand that consistently delivers subpar products or services? Probably not. That's why investing in quality is a non-negotiable client retention idea.


One size doesn't fit all, and customers know it. If you want to build trust with them, you have to know your clients on a deeper level. Collect data from their shopping history, carry in-app surveys, and use it to create memorable interactions. 

Remember, personalization isn't just a nice-to-have. It creates a bond that goes beyond transactions, making customers feel like they're part of something special. 

Loyalty Programs

Think of customer loyalty programs as your way of rolling out the red carpet for your most cherished consumers. Give them access to special discounts, VIP events, or early product releases. Make them feel like they're part of an exclusive club, reaping the benefits of their continued support.

With a well-designed loyalty program, you'll not only retain customers but also turn them into enthusiastic brand advocates. They'll share their positive experiences with others, becoming your ultimate marketing force.

Customer Support

Think about the brands you love. Now you can be in the customer's shoes and identify exactly why you are coming back to that particular brand. You might think it’s about cost and quality, but there is more behind it. Chances are, they offer high-end customer support. 

Therefore, you should also offer multiple support channels, such as phone, email, or live chat, to cater to your target audience's preferences. Respond promptly, listen attentively, and provide solutions that leave them satisfied.

Comfortable Onboarding

You know what they say, first impressions matter. That's why a robust onboarding program is a must-have to increase customer retention. Create an onboarding experience that goes beyond the basics. Guide users through a seamless introduction to your product or service, demonstrate its value, and provide the necessary tools and resources to ensure a smooth start. 

Pricing & Promotions

Price plays a significant role in e-commerce. You want to set a competitive price that reflects the quality and value of your offerings. Conduct market research, analyze customer preferences, and find that sweet spot where they feel they're getting a fair deal. They incentivize repeat purchases and give customers an extra reason to choose your brand over others.

However, it's still essential to strike the right balance. Offering promotions too frequently or devaluing your products can negatively impact your brand's perceived worth, so don’t toy with that too much. 

11 Proven Customer Retention Strategies in 2023

Here are several ideas on how to retain customers:

Optimize Omnichannel Campaigns

With the variety of AI and machine learning services, the opportunities for outreach are limitless. The key is to be where your customers roam and utilize marketing automation as much as you can at every touchpoint. After encountering your brand on multiple channels like email, social media, SMS, or mobile push notifications, the customer will have a sense of familiarity with your brand name.

Use Upselling & Cross-Selling Techniques

The art of selling is an incredibly diverse thing with a lot of room for creativity and opportunities for marketing automation. There are many tools at your disposal to get your clients to their final action, but be sure to use them wisely. Upselling and cross-selling are not about being pushy — it's about demonstrating the value of additional products or services that genuinely enhance the users' journey. 

Take It As a P2P Relationship, Not B2C

Many entrepreneurs fall into the same trap when they try to target individuals and organizations by building strictly transactional relationships. But, whatever company you are selling to, you eventually come to deal with ordinary people primarily driven by emotions. Therefore, once you shift your mindset from B2C to P2P, you will grasp how to increase customer retention. 

Expand Customer’s Touchpoints With Your Brand

Don’t build your interaction with the existing customers only through one channel. Expand your touchpoints and surprise them with your omnipresence in different places like social media, podcasts, pop-up events, or personalized in-app messages. Only those brands are the most memorable that pop up unexpectedly. By being where they least expect, you'll capture their attention and stay top of mind.

Provide Exclusive Access & VIP Treatment

Everyone loves feeling special, and your customers are no exception. Offer exclusive access to special events, promotions, or products reserved only for your loyal customers. By treating them like VIPs, you will reward their loyalty and make them feel valued and appreciated. This sense of exclusivity creates a strong bond with your brand and helps reduce the churn rate.

Admit Your Mistakes

Mistakes happen, and when they do, embrace them with transparency. Admitting your errors demonstrates authenticity and accountability. Take swift action to rectify the situation and go the extra mile to make things right. Even if the overall customer experience wasn’t sufficiently smooth, owning up to your missteps and providing exceptional service recovery will only do you good. Thus, you build trust and loyalty even in the face of challenges.

Utilize RFM Analysis

RFM analysis stands for Recency, Frequency, and Monetary. This type of customer data analysis helps understand customer behavior and tailor your retention efforts accordingly. In order to gain valuable insights into your customer’s preferences, you need to study their recency of purchase, frequency of customer engagement, and monetary value. Later, you can use this knowledge to create campaigns that reduce customer churn.

Go For Influencer Partnerships

Influencer marketing has become one of the best customer retention strategies for reaching a wider audience and building credibility. Collaborate with influential personalities who align with your brand values and have a strong following in your target market. Before forming any partnerships, though, make sure the influencers you choose genuinely resonate with your brand because if not, you will not attract or retain the customer and can even go the opposite way.

Don’t Underestimate Smooth Onboarding

First impressions matter, especially when it comes to new customers. A smooth onboarding process sets the tone for their entire customer engagement with your brand. People are inherently lazy and skeptical. They don’t like reading long and vague texts that don't bring any value to them. Streamline the registration and activation process, provide deep links and clear instructions, offering helpful resources to ensure a hassle-free start. The same goes for any new feature you add to your product over time.

Zomato Onboarding Example

Highlight Your Selling Points

What makes your brand unique? One of the best customer retention strategies is to identify your key selling points and emphasize them consistently across all touchpoints. Whether it's exceptional customer service, innovative features, or unbeatable prices, highlight what sets you apart from the competition. Clearly communicate the value customers can expect from choosing your brand, and reinforce these selling points throughout their journey.

Listen to the Customer’s Voice

However impeccably you manage your online store, feedback about your products and services is bound to arise. Your customers hold valuable insights that can help you improve your products, services, and overall customer experience. Actively listen to their feedback through surveys, social media monitoring, or customer support interactions. Analyze their suggestions and concerns, and make data-driven improvements based on their contribution. 

Best Customer Retention Examples & Use Cases

Take a look at some successful customer retention examples from famous names:

McDonald's Value Meal Offers

McDonald's knows how to win hearts (and appetites) with their irresistible value meal offers. Customers get a satisfying meal at a great value, while McDonald's increases their average order value and encourages repeat visits. 

Coca-Cola's Collaborations

Coca-Cola proves that good things come in collaboration. The company teams up with popular brands and cultural events, creating limited-edition drinks that people crave. Sip by sip, Coca-Cola keeps customer lifetime value going strong.

LinkedIn's Skill Development Courses

LinkedIn isn't just about professional connections; they're all about leveling up careers too. The educational courses they offer not only help professionals enhance their skills but also create a sense of dependence on LinkedIn's platform for career growth. 

Google's User Feedback Surveys

Google has long been implementing a customer-centric approach to improve its products and services. They actively solicit user feedback through surveys, allowing customers to voice their opinions and suggest improvements.

How to Build a Perfect Customer Retention Strategy with Reteno

Reteno offers a comprehensive suite of services for effective customer communication and retention through omnichannel and mobile marketing campaigns. We help you deliver targeted messages via in-app, web and mobile push notifications, email campaigns, actionable personalization techniques, and much more. You can familiarize yourself with our services on the official website and book a demo with our friendly experts. Looking forward to our prolific partnership!

Final Thoughts

In a nutshell, the answer to how to retain clients lies in being present, unique, and unforgettable. Consider examples of customer retention strategies mentioned above and choose the one you think would have the biggest impact on your reputation among fellow ecommerce stores. Don't forget to provide VIP treatment, team up with influencers, and make onboarding a smooth ride. Highlight your unique selling points, lend an ear to customer feedback, and always be there with open arms. Customer retention programs might come in handy, so utilize them for better efficiency. 

Alex Danchenko


October 14, 2022

Alex Danchenko


June 20, 2023

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