5 Essential Components of a Retail Referral Program

Regardless of whether or not you own a retail store or an e-commerce website, obtaining referrals from your existing customers is one of the strongest marketing weapons in your arsenal. Take time to consider whether or not you’re doing everything you can to harness the power of retail referrals. Global Resources LLC consultants recommend the following five steps to help you get started.

Step 1: Be Referral-Worthy

As expected, you can’t expect to get referrals unless you start by delivering amazing products and customer service. Sure, you may sell the same products as your competitor(s), but remarkable customer service can make the difference in where shoppers decide to buy.

Consider the last time a retailer went out of their way to help you during the purchasing process. What did they do that made you remember and share the experience? That’s the type of customer service experience you want to deliver.

Step 2: Find Your Best Customers

Ultimately, the customers who are most loyal to your retail store or e-commerce website are your best bets for garnering referrals. You should use your customer loyalty program, purchase records, or other customer data to identify these people so you can reach out to them. Of course, you may already know who some of your top-notch customers are from just seeing them in the store time and time again.

Step 3: Decide On Your Retail Referral Incentives

You’ll want to take time and think about what types of referral incentives you’re going to offer. Ultimately, what you sell and who your target customer base is will help determine the referral incentives that are most impactful.

Step 4: Train Your Employees In Your Referral Program

If your employees don’t understand how your referral program works, customers will become frustrated. This is the exact opposite of the result you want. Make sure your sales clerks know the ins and outs of your program so they can seamlessly process transactions involving referral rewards. Your employees should also be encouraged to promote the referral program to customers they interact with.

Step 5: Market Your Retail Referral Program

Get started by sending a referral incentive offer to those best customers that you’ve identified. You can do this via email or even direct mail if that’s what your customers prefer. Consider including a promotional code that customers can share with their friends so you can track whether or not the referrals are effective. You can also promote your referral program with signage in your store or banners on your website.

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