Hit-&-run customers are elusive, exasperating, and expensive. They sneak into your database with the promise of long-term loyalty, but they never deliver. They purchase one time and disappear. Every marketing penny spent trying to lure them into the second order is wasted.
The biggest challenge with hit-&-run customers is that they look like regular ones.
You have to dig deep to find the things that make them different. Here are some clues to look for:
Product similarity: Hit-&-run customers often purchase the same items or from the same category. Quite often, it is a loss leader item designed to bring in new customers. If you use special items to acquire customers, run a lifetime value check to verify that they are attracting people who become loyal.
People similarity: Hit-&-run customers often have the same demographics. If you aren’t profiling your customers, you should start now. Recognizing the shoppers least likely to purchase again will help increase profitability.
Acquisition similarity: Some mailing lists, advertising, and PR coverage yields higher rates of hit-&-run shoppers than others do. Monitor every segment carefully to make sure that you are acquiring the types of customers you need to keep your company growing.
Promotion similarity: Sale promotions are great for introducing your company to new people. Some will become lifelong customers. Others are bargain hunters. And, some are hit-&-run customers. If your sales are generating a high percentage of hit-&-run shoppers, reconsider running the promotions.
Effective management of the different customer types improves your return on investment. It is the best way to help your company grow and prosper.