Customer Retention Amid Global Inflation: Five Long-Term Success Strategies

In the face of economic challenges, how would your business prioritise customer retention amidst global inflation? What strategies will you implement to ensure loyalty from your existing customer base?

In 2022, Southeast Asia experienced a noteworthy economic rebound, registering a substantial 8.7% recovery after the pandemic-induced disruptions. Nevertheless, the growth hype simmered as the economy progressed into the second quarter of 2023. 

Source: McKinsey & Company

Hold on tight, SME! You don’t need to hit the panic button just yet! In fact, this is the perfect time to re-evaluate your value proposition to enhance customer satisfaction. 

Here’s how:

#1 Operate with Trust and Transparency

Have you ever noticed that customers are surprisingly open to subtle changes in pricing when they believe they are getting a fair value?

In Singapore, small food operators such as cai fan (economy mixed rice) stores nail it by being transparent about the costs of each dish. Besides, it is common for sellers in hawker centres to display notices communicating upcoming price adjustments and their effective dates.

Source: CNA

Similarly in Malaysia, restaurants are not only displaying notices in-store but on their social media pages as well. For instance, Siampot Buffet Steamboat & Grill, a hidden gem next to KLCC announced their updated menu prices on both channels. In addition to pricing updates, they have also displayed notices on additional charges for any food wastage.

Source: Siampot Buffet Steamboat & Grill

These direct approaches empower customers to make well-informed, budget-friendly decisions, thus avoiding surprises during payment. Most importantly, they foster customers’ sense of trust in your products or services, thus becoming more receptive to embracing new prices – a critical factor in successful customer retention.

#2 Encourage Returning Customers with Loyalty Reward Programs

Let’s discuss another game-changer that keeps your customers in the loop through loyalty reward incentives. 

Here’s the scoop! Growing modern oriental milk tea chain – Chagee, offers its Mini Program which every purchase grants customers accumulated points and exclusive discounts. In Malaysia, Chagee gives new customers a little welcome treat — a set of five vouchers, each providing an RM3 discount when you make your first purchase.

These perks do not end there. Occasionally, the accumulated points can also be used to redeem complimentary items. Chagee also comes up with personalised rewards for pick-up or delivery services.

Ultimately, implementing loyalty reward programs is a cornerstone for a strong customer retention strategy. It ensures your business remains at the forefront of customers’ choices and strengthens your engagements with them. 

#3 Customers Opt For Value Over Price 

Customers often prioritise value over price when deciding what to buy. As such, the F&B industry often emphasises unique selling propositions and benefits to justify their pricing strategies.

One interesting F&B sector we can look at is the hotpot business, which has been increasingly popular across Southeast Asia over the past decade. Among them, Haidilao Hot Pot stands out, renowned for its exceptional customer service. Their distinctive selling points include impressive services such as noodle-pulling performances, face-changing performances, providing BYOB (bring your own beverages), and ziplock bags, setting them apart consistently.

Customers waiting for a table are also lavishly attended to, enjoying an array of complimentary services such as free snacks, board games, shoe shines, hand massages, and manicures. These services are aimed at transforming customers’ waiting time into an integral part of the overall experience, ensuring they are thoroughly pampered.

Looking at Haidilao Hot Pot’s business model, we can see that these strategies are targeted at customers who prioritise perceived value over price. 

#4 Elevate Business with Exceptional Customer Service

Exceptional customer service is the core ingredient for business growth! 

Every customer interaction is an opportunity to foster positive relationships, which can ultimately translate into increased sales and revenue for your business. In retail, cultivating ‘empathy’ for customers is highlighted as the essence of tangible and meaningful experiences.

In addition, fulfilling customer needs and introducing new products that align with their preferences are also key to keeping customers satisfied. These efforts are more than just about running your business as usual. By cultivating customer interest and affection, you are paving the way towards sustained customer retention.

#5 Embrace Innovations and Efficiency for Sustainable Customer Retention

Do you know that enhancing your business’ operational efficiency can be a strategic response to inflation-driven cost fluctuations? 

Automation via technologies serves as your time and money-saving champion. Besides handling manual and repetitive tasks, these technologies are designed to boost productivity and accuracy as well. 

Optimising efficiency for your business is achievable with Qashier’s cloud-based POS system. It is a super smart sidekick that streamlines your operations,  be it inventory management, sales tracking, or promotions. Additionally, Qashier offers automated features that manage e-invoices and purchase orders – an efficient tool that helps your business save time and costs!

Stay cost-effective amid the inflation with the Qashier SME Support Package

Opened to all Singaporean-registered businesses, Qashier’s SME Support Package (QSP) helps your business embrace digitalised operations and accept cashless payments with up to 50% sponsorship on its POS and payment solutions. 

Qashier’s QSP pricing model is designed to make Qashier’s smart solutions affordable for businesses amidst inflation and the ever-evolving digital economy. Business applicants can be assured of receiving immediate approvals regardless of their annual sales turnover or employee headcount limit.

To learn more about Qashier’s SME Support Package, click here.

More about Qashier

Qashier offers multiple digital solutions, including QR code table ordering, table management (F&B), employee management, customer relationship management (loyalty programs), inventory management, data analytics, and cashless payments, in an all-in-one device.

Qashier promises a seamless setup within 10 minutes, without the need for technical expertise. It boasts a user-friendly interface that is simple for anyone to learn and use. If you require assistance, you’ll find 7 days-a-week responsive technical support from your local team.

Try the Qashier app for free on your own Android device! Alternatively, you can speak to us to see how Qashier can meet your business needs. Schedule a meeting with us here, call us at (+65) 3165 0155WhatsApp (+65) 8887 7687, or email [email protected]



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