5 customer retention strategies for your online store

Customer retention, on the one hand, means winning over the consumer, keeping them longer in your store, until they make a purchase. On the other, it means keeping it active, buying more often with your company. Find out more here!


Did you know that customer retention has a direct impact on the financial results of companies? That's right. Second Bain & Company research, increase this rate by just 5% increases profits from 25% to 95%.

Therefore, in this article, we will understand what customer retention is and how to put it into practice. 

But, after all, is it possible to create customer retention actions within a virtual store? The answer is yes. Using the right strategies, you can take advantage of the full potential of your old customers as well as new visits to your website.

And there are many financial benefits to doing so: in addition to increasing your earnings, investing in customer retention also contributes to lowering the cost of customer acquisition. 

Proof of this is that, according to a research CallMiner's, it's from 5 to 25 times cheaper keep a customer than acquire a new one.

To understand how to put this strategy into practice within your e-commerce, keep reading and find out what customer retention is and what are the main tips to achieve this. 

What is customer retention?

In short, customer retention is the ability to win and/or retain customers. 

When we refer to loyalty, customer retention means keep active consumers who have already made a purchase with your company. An active customer is one who interacts with the company and places new orders. 

But for this to happen, it is first necessary to win over the consumer, making him make a first purchase – whether in physical or virtual form. In the case of the online store, retention also means keep the customer inside the sitefor as long as possible, increasing the chances of purchase.

Loyalty customers

In the first case, customer loyalty, among the metrics that help you measure the level of retention capacity of your business are:

  • recurring customer rate;
  • purchase frequency;
  • average ticket value.

Therefore, to have a good overall retention rate, it is necessary to invest:

  • in actions that encourage the customer to make a new purchase; 
  • in reducing the time separating one purchase from another;
  • in the increase of average ticket of each customer, giving an up as much in the value of each purchase.

winning a purchase

But as we said, first of all, you have to win over the customer and their first purchase in your store. What in e-commerce, as we have already said, means retaining the user for longer within the site.

For example, a visitor visits your store but leaves without making a purchase and without signing up for your form to lead generation. This directly impacts your rejection rate.

O bounce rate, or bounce rate, is a metric that measures the percentage of visitors who enter your e-commerce and leave without continuing to view other pages or take action. 

To avoid this situation, you should consider visitor retention. After all, the longer a user stays on your site, the greater the chances of finding relevant products and becoming interested in them.

5 tips to retain customers and decrease bounce rate

Here are the main tips for retaining customers in the virtual store: 

1) Invest in smart windows

2) Build an email marketing strategy

3) Create a subscription club 

4) Offer cashback

5) Use retention popups

1) Invest in smart windows

Investing in smart shop windows is one of the main suggestions to retain customers on your online store pages.

Remember that to attract a visitor to your store, you need to invest in digital marketing industry, such as paid ads. And this type of action represents a high cost for the company, since most of the ads are paid per click. 

This means that if a person enters your store and leaves without taking any action, you have spent the ad, but have not recouped part of the investment by winning a lead or making a sale. So when the user is already on your site, keeping them there should be a priority. That way, you get the most out of your investment. 

It is in this scenario that the smart showcase turns out to be interesting. It recommends products to consumers, personalized or not, according to the browsing behavior inside the store and/or according to the item that caught the user's attention initially. 

For example, if a user clicked on one of the flip-flops in the store, the smart storefront can show them other flip-flop options. 

this kind of action enhances the chances of customer retention on your e-commerce pages, as it increases the opportunities for them to click to learn more about products.

Consider the following situation: a consumer is looking for a sweatshirt to face the winter. So he clicks on a sweatshirt ad, but when he is directed to the website page, he notices some detail in the garment that he does not like. 

He can close the page and leave the site behind, or he can continue browsing the product pages. 

Now consider that inside your store there is a carousel with suggested products, right below the description of the accessed product. 

If these products are related to the item that originally caught the customer's attention, to the point of making them click on an ad, there is a better chance that they will access these items to learn more about each one.

This is a simple explanation of what smart storefront is and how it can increase the chances of retention, from recommendation templates of products.

We are talking about a recommendation system which will contribute a lot to the shopping experience of your customer.

Want to know 4 reasons to use smart windows in your online store? Then check out our video!

SmartHint offers features such as smart showcases through 100% autonomous technologies. Get to know! 

2) Build an email marketing strategy

A communication by email it is one of the most efficient ways to retain customers who have already made a purchase with your company and who may make another one. 

According to one research published by WBR digital in partnership with Emarsys, 80% of respondents say that email marketing was crucial in customer retention.

Therefore, it is recommended that you use the channel to move the existing contact base and, thus, increase the conversion rates. Use email marketing to:

  • publicize offers; 
  • announce releases; 
  • offer discounts, coupons and more.

Prioritize segmented and personalized communication with each lead through automation tools. This kind of e-commerce technology contributes to automating the offer of items and contents relevant to leads.

3) Create a subscription club

You may have heard of subscription clubs of wines, beers, books, makeup, among others. And they are also part of our customer retention tips.

This business model helps reduce the time between one purchase and another and increasing the average ticket. In addition, it creates a more “official” loyalty between the customer and your company. 

Not to mention that it reduces the chances of losing the consumer to the competition, since he has an “appointment” with you. 

But, it is important to remember that, to guarantee the maintenance of the club's subscribers, your company must guarantee good service, good products and exclusive benefits. 

4) Offer cashback

O cashback it's a sales tactic that can also be used to attract and retain customers. With it, the customer makes a purchase for the full value of the product and gets part of the money back. Generally, to spend on the same site where you made the initial purchase. 

For example, a consumer accesses your tennis e-commerce, which is offering 15% cashback. Therefore, if he buys a product for R$200, he will earn R$30 to discount the total value of a future purchase. 

In this way, the customer will need to return to your store to make the purchase and be able to use the amount received in cashback. 

The ability to make the consumer buy again from your website is the central objective of retention marketing that uses cashback as a tool.

5) Use retention popups

Returning to the actions that aim to keep the consumer inside the site for longer, we have our last tip of what to do to retain customers: use pop-ups

Os retention pop-ups they are windows that open at strategic moments in order to retain the customer in the virtual store and/or stimulate a purchase.

For example, when the client directs the cursor to close the browser window, it is possible to schedule a popup to appear with tempting offers for him. 

The objective is to make you stay on the site and, for that, some products are presented, in which you may be interested.

SmartHint has three types of retention popups: 

  • “Don't go away”, which appears on the home page; 
  • “Lightning Promotion”; that appears on product pages; 
  • “Last chance”, which appears in the shopping cart. 

With these features, you can increase your conversion rates much more efficiently. 


In this article, you learned that there are two types of retention: one that keeps your customer in your store longer, in order to increase conversions; and the one that builds customer loyalty, making them buy from you more often. He also gave some tips to achieve the long-awaited customer retention.

Did you realize the importance of investing in these strategies to succeed in your business, whether physical or digital?

Discover our technology and understand how to use it to improve your e-commerce experience, retain customers and generate more sales, with intelligence and practicality.


Rodrigo Schiavini

Rodrigo Schiavini

Founder and business director of SmartHint, he is also regional director Paraná of ​​ABComm, with more than 10 years of experience in electronic commerce for major brands in the most varied segments.
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