How Secure is Your Brand Loyalty System?

No question, some retail brands had a difficult time last year. The harm, following the recent data thefts—where millions of consumers’ personal information was stolen—is now quite apparent.

Hackers are ubiquitous and looking at every site and point of data exchange to find vulnerabilities where they can cause harm or steal.

When it does happen, brand loyalty is one of the first things to disappear along with the data.  Brand loyalty is about a relationship, and it can be a fragile thing. Even if your site wasn’t the one that was hacked, the ripple effect can extend across the entire eCommerce pond.

So how can you reassure customers and keep them brand loyal to you and your brand?

(1)    Be ready to respond in a variety of ways. Remember it’s an omnichannel world, so use all of your available tools to reach out.  Let your customer know you are on their side. Let them know you value their relationship, and you are doing everything you can to help them transact safely and securely.

(2)    Tell customers about your privacy policy that explains what happens to their information once  its submitted. Customers want to make sure that their information is safe and will not to be sold or transferred. What data do you keep about users? What is the use of this data?  Who has access to it? What happens in the case of a business transition?

(3)    Let your customers know how you will handle fraud, and let them know the things you do to prevent it from happening in the first place.

(4)    Talk with your customers, and ask for feedback. Surveys are one of the quickest ways of finding out what matters to your customers.

(5)    Give your customers the opportunity to connect with each other. One of the most influential factors in our buying decisions is the opinions of our friends and relatives. In fact, a large majority of online shoppers now trust what other customers say  about the products they buy more than the e-tailers themselves.  Customers enjoy being able to recognize in each other “people like me” and to form genuine relationships with like-minded people.

(6)    Annually Zappos is one of the highest rated eCommerce brands.  According to Forbes“Customers rated Zappos very highly for loyalty-inspiring distinctions. Zappos has been able to use a balance of technology and direct contact between customers and employees to build deep and lasting customer loyalty, despite selling their products at full, department store retail prices”

Look at the Zappos website and you will find a myriad of ways for consumers to dialog with Zappos, and with each other.  It’s a virtual two-way highway of communication.

The more communication and interaction, the stronger the community, the better the feedback and the stronger the trust.  That’s the essence of brand building.

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About Sean Cook

Chief Executive Officer
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