Customer loyalty

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

In addition to measures that serve customer satisfaction and customer loyalty and go beyond mere customer orientation , most types of business have programs for customer loyalty , i. H. to acquire regular customers from walk-in customers . Classic initiatives for customer loyalty, such as bonus and points programs, are now being supplemented and in some cases even replaced by psychologically sound customer relationship management. Psychological customer loyalty measures are proving to be a more effective and customer-oriented way of creating customer loyalty today, in which classic bonus programs will only play a subordinate role in the future. Because people per se do not act and make decisions rationally (or only to a limited extent), pricing policy should be assessed as a long-term inefficient means of customer loyalty.

In this field, customer experience management is also establishing itself for the targeted increase in customer loyalty.

Acquisition potential - market theory for customer loyalty

Double price sales function

Under the acquisitive potential is the ability of a company , customers to bind. The individual design of the price-sales function depends on the level of this potential. One speaks of the acquisition potential in connection with the price-sales function of the polypol in the absence of market transparency and the existence of preferences of the market participants (e.g. regular customers ).

In the monopoly (or acquisition) area, the company can behave like a monopoly when it comes to pricing : If the company increases the price in this area, it does not lose any customers to the competition (with some customers buying fewer, some buying nothing at all). If, on the other hand, the company lowers the price in this area, it does not win any customers from the competition (some customers buy more, some who previously bought nothing buy now).

Price changes in the upper and lower polypolistic areas have the following effects: massive migration of customers to the competition in the event of a price increase and massive migration of customers from the competition in the event of a price decrease.

Customer loyalty in trade and services

The loyalty cycle for customer loyalty

Customers, especially regular customers, often receive from trading and service companies

  • Rewards after the purchase: rewards , gifts or bonuses (exclusive offers at price / offer level, e.g. lounge use)
  • Rewards before the act of purchase: announcement of discounts or other benefits (e.g. additional baggage allowance ) or
  • Reward during the buying act: preferential treatment, e.g. B. less waiting time at switches.

The provider thus gives incentives for repeated business relationships. Customer loyalty programs are often linked to a customer card (club card, bonus card). The provider also receives the name and address of the customer and can use them to analyze purchasing behavior and to create customer profiles, which in turn can be used for targeted advertising or other marketing measures as part of customer relationship management . From a market psychological point of view, however, it should be noted that the acceptance of the customer card decreases with increasing fear of data abuse.

In a study by arvato services, 78% of those surveyed named “save money” as the most common reason for private households to participate in customer loyalty programs.

Customer loyalty programs are particularly effective with business customers when discounts can also be used privately. In this case, the premium in the selection of the provider may have a stronger effect than the actual purchase price. It should be noted here, however, that private use of such benefits, even partially, is prohibited or regulated in many companies for reasons of compliance .

Loyalty cards

A classic example are the discount stamps that were introduced in Kaiser's coffee shops in the 1950s .

Common customer loyalty measures are

According to estimates, between 100 and 200 million customer cards are in circulation in Germany. According to the TNS Emnid study, the most important criteria for consumers are trustworthiness, attractiveness and a large number of options for redemption.

The frequent flyer programs of the major airlines are designed to increase customer loyalty by rewarding frequent use of the same airline with discounts in the form of free flights or rewards . The customer monitor Germany research project carried out extensive studies and surveys on the subject of customer loyalty.

Retail psychology in particular draws attention to the fact that the instrumental customer loyalty u. U. only to a form "artificial", i.e. H. unstable or short-term customer loyalty. For trading companies , customer loyalty is more important , i. H. Sustainable customer loyalty that (regular) customers develop themselves out of their satisfaction and in the long term.

Customer loyalty in the industrial environment

Gunter Gehrke (2003) describes customer loyalty in industrial supplier-buyer constellations as the increased willingness of the buyer to enter into a permanent relationship with the supplier and to generate non-random follow-up orders within a normal period of time, based on the specific transaction item. Customer loyalty is expressed here in the high probability of a follow-up order. Customer loyalty programs are graded according to the attractiveness of the customer for the provider company. The most attractive customers are “treated” the most intensively. The gradation of the measures is z. B. made with the ABC analysis :

  • A customers (those with the highest share of sales or profits) are bound , for example, with the help of cooperation offers in the field of research and development , with individual training (sometimes in a very pleasant environment) or bonus programs (for example for achieving a certain annual purchase). In this segment , preferred services with shortened response times, 24-hour on-call service and personally assigned consultants ( key account managers ) are also common.
  • B customers (with a high proportion of regular day-to-day business) often receive targeted discount offers, more frequent advice and written industry information, are invited to joint training courses or enjoy a certain range of services that would normally be subject to a surcharge.
  • C-customers (walk-in customers and problem customers) are rarely retained in practice. Nevertheless, the service should at least be offered at a satisfactory level. Complaining customers are often good potential regular customers if the company provides them with targeted support. If the effort pays off, such customer relationships are sometimes addressed with the help of specially trained employees.

The procedure is often as follows: A customers: 80% share of sales, B customers 15% sales, C customers: 5% sales.

Customer loyalty is promoted in a particularly differentiated manner in the area of capital goods marketing. Depending on the importance of a customer (see customer value and ABC analysis ), different marketing instruments can increase customer loyalty. When using them, there is always an economic relationship between the effort and the expected return.

There is a trade fair that deals with the topic of customer loyalty. The CRM-expo is the leading European trade fair for customer relationship management.

An important technical and psychological possibility of industrial customer loyalty is the so-called lock-in effect , which takes advantage of technical dependencies or compatibilities.

Customer loyalty through "experience management"

Far beyond mere loyalty programs beyond the so-called customer experience management ( customer experience , CEM). It aims to create positive customer experiences to build an emotional bond between the user and the product or provider. The primary goal of CEM is to turn satisfied customers into loyal customers and loyal customers into “enthusiastic ambassadors” of the brand or product (“satisfied - loyal - advocate”). With this, CEM not only focuses on direct effects such as willingness to buy, sales or intensity of use, but also specifically on indirect effects such as word of mouth. Customers are so to speak "emotionally" bound. According to a study by Roland Berger, building an emotional bond with the customer is one of the three most important skills in sales. 40 percent of the sales employees surveyed stated that they could even significantly increase sales as a result.

See also


Individual evidence

  1. ^ Van Treeck, J. (2011): Loyalty - The Psychology of Customer Loyalty. Bod, Norderstedt. Dissertation at the University of Hamburg.
  2. Hans-Otto Schenk: Psychologie im Handel , 2nd edition, Munich-Vienna 2007, p. 226, ISBN 978-3-486-58379-3
  3. Archived copy ( memento of the original from March 1, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. . In: All4Finance - Gabler's financial portal , July 24, 2008. Accessed October 20, 2008 @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  4. Customer cards: Germany in the collective mania. In: Wirtschaftswoche , April 25, 2013
  5. ↑ Bonus programs in Germany. TNS Emnid, study, December 2014
  6. Reiner Kafitz: Why emotional customer loyalty increases your sales. November 12, 2014