Customer retention as a main eCommerce challenge of 2021

Everyone is talking about how eCommerce sales have skyrocketed in 2020, right? But how come that you are not fully satisfied then? Well, one thing has been left in the dark and that’s the customers’ shift. That’s why one of the biggest challenges that retailers are facing in 2021 is customer retention.

Let’s suggest some proven ways to ensure that customers are still willing to click on that “buy” button.

Is it time to refresh the funnel?

Defining a funnel is not set-in-stone action, therefore, it needs to be revised from time to time. Different products are meant for different parts of the funnel. Some products are more likely to be checked over the social ads, while others are there to present customers with a premium offer.

Putting the right product in the right part of the funnel can be pretty tricky and time-consuming, but it’s beneficial. The previous year hasn’t helped much either - the pandemic lead to eCommerce disruption and it’s safe to say that today’s funnels look the same as the ones from the past year. A shift among the existing customers is obvious, so the topic of customer retention came to the surface once again.

The previous year was there to help you gather new customer data, and optimize your funnel accordingly. But how?

The first step is to redefine your key products/services/categories. Maybe they’ve stayed the same, maybe they haven’t - that’s what the gathered data serves for. Once everything is properly organized, increased customer engagement and sales become a very reachable goal.

Do price plans need a revision too?

Dealing with customer retention requires a price plans revision as well. Businesses usually like to stick with the same prices, but if the change is needed, an increase always seems like a more desirable option. But, you know how they say - the product is worth as much as the customer is willing to pay, therefore, the market conditions have the last word.

price plans
price plans

After 2020, it’s likely to expect that the customers are suffering financially and that they are not so willing to spend as they were. Of course, every business is unique, and you can have customers whose companies are facing financial crises or the ones who work in the tech sector and are receiving pay raises. But, a customer retention strategy needs to be put in both cases.

Again, the answer lies in data gathering. If you are a small business, then even a basic pricing analysis will do the work. However, the bigger and complex the business is, the more sophisticated and detailed data will be needed.

Many competitors take into consideration, thousands of hours spent in Excel, and doing it all manually can become an overwhelming task. The solution lies in automation. A smart repricing and price monitoring tool can help you speed up this process while getting more accurate data.

Wise repricing can help you majorly in the customer retention process, hence, considering having the help of one of such tools can be a good investment.

Simplicity is the key to customer retention

Everyone likes it simple. It’s no secret that customer retention greatly depends on avoiding unnecessary hustle, especially when it comes to the payment process and different policies.

In eCommerce, payment, shipping, and refund policies are the most important ones. Customers value clarity - they don’t like hidden costs, and not being able to predict the shipping time. You want to make sure that your policies are as fully transparent and simple as possible. Beyond that, if there is any kind of policy change, customers need to be informed. Trying to hide these things under the rug only leads to grumpy customers, and definitely not in favor of custom retention. :)

refund policy
refund policy

Refund and return policies may require a bit more attention since they are complicated. Usually, they will mostly be defined by legal elements, but in case your company has any specific terms, you would want to be open about it. You may be surprised to hear that according to the UPS Survey around ⅓ of eCommerce shoppers will return the product. Moreover, around 75% states that it’s the return process that defines whether they will continue to purchase from a certain company or not.

So, what can you do to ease this process and increase customer retention?

-Keep the policies clean and simple -Allow easy label printing -Offer free return -Be transparent about the deadlines


With such a challenging year behind us, customer retention seems to be more important than ever. Bringing new customers is not always easy or profitable, so companies shouldn’t take the actual customers for granted. Earning someone’s trust is a long-term process, but once achieved, the benefits are numerous.

As you can see, not all the elements of customer retention need to be super complicated. In fact, it’s just the small things that we mentioned that, if performed right, can make a big difference.

Have you been struggling with keeping your customers? If you haven’t please share some of your secrets with our readers. :) We’re always eager to learn from positive examples.