7 top Australian Shopify Plus agencies reveal their retention tips for 2022

2022 is set to be a big year for eCommerce retention as brands look to offset high acquisition costs by improving LTV. We asked 7 leading Australian agencies for their top tips on how stores can boost their retention strategies.

Harry Willis
Partnerships Lead

Online acquisition costs have never been higher in eCommerce. Faced with a squeeze on revenue from pricey Facebook ads and ever greater online competition, brands are looking towards their existing customer base to make up the shortfall.

This is a smart play. It is 6 times more expensive to win a new customer than it is to keep existing one, and if you can increase retention by just 5%, it can boost long-term profitability by 75%.

Despite the potential benefits, moving the needle on retention is tough, and many brands struggle to deliver an experience that keeps customers coming back for more. To find out how eCommerce brands can increase their LTV, we asked Australia’s top agencies for their tips on how to improve retention in 2022.

Simon Byrne, Chief Revenue Officer, Andzen

“With many traditional retention techniques starting to become commonplace, 2022 is the year to evolve your strategy and offer something your competitors aren’t. A well-designed and well-executed loyalty strategy is a great place to start, but we recommended taking a slightly different approach.

In addition to the standard rewards points and coupons model, we suggest you start to incorporate exclusive perks. This could be early access to sales and product drops — or input into your upcoming collections (choosing the next print, style, flavour, etc). This can help you to quickly rise above the price comparison trap, while driving up your customer retention metrics in the process.

We also suggest connecting your marketing tools for a more seamless customer experience. For example, using a tool like Loop (connected to Klaviyo) to trigger automated emails based on return events and send targeted offers to win back customers who submit a return or exchange.”

Andzen create smart marketing solutions to turn browsers into buyers and increase the revenue from your ecommerce website.

Flynn McFarlane, Managing Director, Stead Lane

“There are a number of tactics that have worked for us over the years, but building a community centered around your customers is one consistent we’ve seen across our highest performing clients. When you get this right, it reduces CAC and increases CLV. Sounds great right?

How do you do that? Well - it starts with a strong brand. When authenticity and transparency is at the forefront of who you are as a brand, you’re able to build a connection with your customers and make them feel like they’re a part of something bigger. It’s so important to be more than just your product and to make your customers feel special so they keep coming back for more.

Ways you can build community include your brand language and the way you communicate with your customers; connecting with influencers that share the same values as your brand; private facebook groups where other customers can share tips, photos and have conversations; early access to new products.

Anyone can start a website and sell a product, but building a community and delivering an epic customer experience will give you the best chance of longevity and success.”

Stead Lane are the digital agency committed to intimately understanding your business and providing digital solutions that achieve measurable results.

Kaustubh Joshi, Group Chief Data Officer, Overdose

“Industry changes around cookies & privacy have considerably impacted ad efficiency over the past 12-18 months, with ad CACs rising 2-3x. It's just no longer profitable to chase new customers without having a purposeful retention strategy.

It's common to see businesses with 6 figure monthly advertising budgets suffering from 70-80%+ ' first-time churn'. i.e most customers never come back for a second purchase - Which shows you not only the gravity of the issue but also the size of the opportunity.

Having clear visibility of a problem is the first step towards solving it. We've traditionally seen plenty of time spent on acquisition side analytics, but little do businesses track retention. What's our first time churn? Why are they churning? What are our customer cohorts? How frequently do they purchase? Who is due for a repurchase? Who is churning? Investing in a BI tool/service to make such insights available on a click will be money well spent, with long term paybacks.

Digitally mature businesses should also consider CDPs (Customer Data Platforms) such as Segment, Lexer, Lytics etc. that help you activate such insights seamlessly into marketing channels such as Email, Social, Search Ads and so on. The beauty of Shopify is the variety of options at hand and the ease of integration.”

Overdose are the ‘Complete Commerce Consultants’. They deliver full service commerce solutions, across Strategy, Experience, Data, Development, Search & Marketing.

Cal Wilson, Founder & CEO, The Working Party

Call your best customers. Work out who is spending with you regularly, and give them a quick call to thank them for their business. Take the opportunity to ask them what they like about shopping with you, and where they think you can do better. Ask them about your competitors — who else are they shopping with, and why? A quick five minute call can provide valuable insights and lock in a customer for life.”

The Working Party design and build best-in-class eCommerce websites on Shopify Plus for retailers with complex technical requirements, who value brand and seek rapid growth through innovation.

Ben De Jonge, Director, The Cut

“We speak to 100s of ecomm merchants and professionals and when we ask them about the single most important factor in ecomm, they reply:

  • Understanding your customers.
  • Building your brand.

Retaining customers now, next year, and forever, is about being as customer-centric as possible. With your brand, your store and your communications.

Never stop listening to your customers, never stop communicating with them, never stop asking for their input and feedback.

Never stop engaging with them, building your understanding of what they need and care about, and feeding that learning back into your brand and store.

The customer relationship never stops. The sale isn’t the end, it’s the beginning, and ongoing communications are not only about repeat purchases.

Customers can add value to your brand with reviews, their own content, and by bringing their friends to become your customers too.

Customer retention in 2022? - Ongoing communication that listens to your customers and happens in the channels your customers prefer.”

The Cut create eCommerce websites and brands that engage customers & grow your sales conversions.

Matthew Craig, Director, MindArc

“The continuous acceleration of omnichannel retail off the back of Covid-19 means retailers need to know why and how their customers want to interact with their brand more than ever. To retain and engage customers into the future you need to provide a fluid retail experience across the various physical and digital channels and consider activating more personalised experiences. There is also an increasing trend in activating omnichannel loyalty programs in a more seamless way which really supports the move to provide that fluid retail experience and avoid a disjointed customer journey. Invest in customer retention and actively track and measure performance to ensure you are responding to customer needs as they change and evolve.”

MindArc are the organically grown and privately owned Australian company specialising in digital retail technology.

George Pappas, Director, G Squared

“The goal should always be improving customer retention rates and developing strategies that will keep your customers coming back for more. Several different customer retention strategies can be used to achieve this, and while it may take some time for these methods to show their true value, the results should speak for themselves. Email notifications are a great way to keep in touch with your customers and they also allow you to introduce new products or services that might be of interest. Make sure that the messages you send out reflect your brand’s personality, as well as any campaign themes and current events.

Loyalty programs are a great way to reward your current customers and encourage them to come back again in the future. You should try tweaking these programs every once in a while so that they don’t get repetitive, but always keep them well-organized & easy-to-use. Adding live chat to your website is an excellent way of providing customer support and making customers feel valued. It also works extremely well for building relationships with clients, so make sure that you’re always around!”

G Squared is a results-driven digital agency built on innovation, technology and hard work.

Blueprint is the world’s first SMS & WhatsApp platform powering CX & retention for DTC eCommerce stores.

We help Shopify brands scale LTV with flexible subscription management, intelligent cross-sell and replenishment flows and seamless customer feedback prompts via text. Book a demo to start monetising your existing customers today.

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Are you all CAC and no win back?

Start building sticky customers today with:

Customer feedback

Flexible subscription management

Intelligent replenishments & cross-sells

"The results have been staggering. Blueprint has massively increased our LTV."
Donald Mendenhall
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