How to get loyal customers: 6 ways

The more loyal customers you have, the less time and money you need to spend on acquiring new customers. After all, regular customers are more likely to buy from you than new customers. How do you turn new customers into regular ones? Discover 6 ways to build customer loyalty.

Customer loyalty, or customer retention, means knowing how to get customers to stay with you instead of shopping elsewhere. Think, for example, of a customer who has been going to the same hairdresser for 10 years, gets a gourmet steak from the same fishmonger every Saturday or someone who has had the same accountant for 25 years. Quality, accessibility and personal contact are important basics for getting loyal customers. The six ways below also help with customer loyalty.

Savings and loyalty program

With a savings and loyalty programme, you reward customers who come back, for instance with discounts or member-only extras. Think of a stamp card from a coffee shop or a membership at a theatre. Savings actions ensure that customers are more likely to buy from you than from your competitor. Read more about savings and loyalty (in Dutch) programmes.


With Customer Relationship Management, or CRM, you store information about your customers and your relationship with them. A CRM system is, for example, an (Excel) document or an online programme. In it, you store information about your customers, such as their email addresses and orders. You can also keep important details about your conversations and appointments, such as preferences for certain products or questions customers ask you.
With this information, you can tailor your provision of services to their needs and preferences. This will make your customers feel that they are getting the right service and personal attention from you. A pleasant customer experience makes it more likely they will buy from you again next time. In addition, CRM allows you to engage in email marketing (see next paragraph). Read more about CRM.

If you process personal data, you must demonstrate that you do so in accordance with privacy legislation, or AVG. One way to do this is by making a processing register, in which you indicate which personal data you use and why you use them.

Email marketing

With email marketing, you send email messages to your customer. For instance, a reminder for an appointment, a newsletter with discounted articles, an invitation to a customer satisfaction survey, order confirmations, 'there is still something in your shopping basket' reminders or a birthday congratulations email. This is how you build customer relationships or increase sales.
Email marketing requires time and attention. First, because you need to comply with privacy laws and regulations. Secondly, because you want your email to be easy to read and reach the right person at the right time. Read more about email marketing.


Newsletters are a form of email marketing. In a newsletter, you keep customers informed about developments in your business. For example, you can write something about how sustainable your product is made, or give tips or share knowledge about a subject that concerns your customers. With a newsletter, you can also boost sales by giving discounts or informing customers about new products, for example.

Social media

Through social media, you talk directly to (potential) customers or pass by on their timeline. You show who you are, what your business does and what results your service or product gives. Customers can follow you and contact you. This ensures direct contact with your (potential) customer.

Pick the social media channel where your customers are. It takes time to post, respond and build a large amount of followers. If you are short on time, it is best to be active on one channel that you can then keep tidy. Read more about social media.

Subscription form

Offering your product or service in the form of a subscription. This means that your customers buy a period during which they can use your service or product. Think of an annual subscription to your software, but also physical products such as fresh flowers every week or a bottle of wine every month. The advantage is that you establish a relationship with your customer by having repeated contact moments. Read more about different business models.

Video: Loyal customers, how to get them

In the video below, entrepreneurs Puck from Hulaaloop (a subscription rental service for sustainable baby clothes) and Martijn (installation company Verspeek) talk about what they do to retain customers. From personal contact and happy employees to comprehensive aftercare and service.

How to get loyal customers