Merriam-Webster’s dictionary defines loyal as, “unswerving in allegiance”. And in today’s extremely competitive retail landscape, companies must work hard to earn and maintain the loyalty of their customers, or run the risk of losing their business. So, what are the most efficient ways for companies to earn and maintain customer loyalty?

Selling a high-quality product just isn’t quite enough anymore. With so many retailers selling similar or equivalent products, there must be more ways to prevent customers from jumping ship without hesitation because they don’t feel any loyalty to a certain retailer.

Here’s how to drive customer loyalty in retail:

Differentiating yourself from your competition

Your product alone may not set you apart, especially in a day and age when everyone is constantly innovating to get themselves one step ahead of their competitors. Finding new ways to stand alone from the others can go a long way to build customer loyalty.

More to selling than just the bottom line

Your customers shouldn’t feel like they are just there to be sold to and nothing else. Finding new ways to make your customers feel like they actually matter to you maintains their loyalty and trust, keeping them coming back time and time again, in-turn driving more sales.

Commitment to giving your customers what they love

Just as important as having customers committed to you, the customer should feel that you are committed to them. And yes, that involves being committed to offering a high-quality product that you know your customers will love.

So, what does targeted product sampling have to do with all this? It’s a great way to differentiate yourself from your competition. Adding a unique gift as an addition to your product sets yourself apart from the field. It shows your customers that you care enough about them to give a little extra to them and that you took the time to find other benefits to offer to them. And finally, being committed to offering a high-quality product that you know your customers will love does not necessarily mean you have to sell the product. Sampling is a great way to pair your company with reputable brands to which you wouldn’t otherwise have access.

Loyalty cannot be bought and it isn’t given. It must be earned through a consistent approach of offering the best possible experience to your customers.