6 CRM Tools for Better Daily Deal Customer Retention

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Customer retention, or a lack thereof, is a problem that many local businesses have struggled with when running daily deals. According to a study by Rice University, only one-fifth of daily deal buyers return for full-priced purchases in the future.

Merchants who go into their promotions with systems in place to manage and track the influx of new customers report significantly higher levels of satisfaction. Customer relationship management tools, in particular, are making it possible for businesses to track redemptions, collect email addresses, analyze revenue data, and drive repeat sales long after their promotions have ended.

Here are six popular tools that can help track daily deal redemptions and improve customer loyalty.

1) Salesforce. More than 100,000 companies already use Salesforce for customer relationship management, which makes this the obvious solution for merchants looking to track customer retention rates and sales data without signing up for a secondary service. In New York City, employees at the Chelsea Piers recreational complex — which has sold more than 20,000 Groupons since 2009 — enter all daily deal customers into their Salesforce database. Once a customer’s personal information has been saved, it becomes easy to track additional purchases and send out information about subsequent offers and promotions.

2) MindBody Online. While MindBody Online is often thought of as a scheduling system, it’s also a robust CRM application that merchants in the health and fitness industry can use to track the activities of their daily deal clients. Merchants that keep detailed client logs can track retention rates, view how many customers from each daily deal promotion have gone on to purchase full-price packages, and send automated emails or text messages to clients whose coupons are about to expire.

3) OpenTable. Restaurants that use OpenTable to accept electronic reservations can also track the return rates for daily deal customers. At Restaurant Michael in Winnetka, Illinois, proprietor Michael Lachowicz downloads the customer data he’s supplied with by Groupon into his personal database. He later cross-references this information with OpenTable reservations to determine how many daily deal customers have returned for full-price visits. Restaurateurs can use the email addresses collected by OpenTable for continuing marketing efforts, as well.

4) MobManager. MobManager has been specifically designed to help merchants track and manage their deal promotions. Merchants can use MobManager internally to track redemptions of multiple deals running at the same time, review the revenue being generated by individual deals, and store contact information from new customers. MobManager offers analytics tools that show which deals are performing best, and helps merchants send targeted promotions to customers as a way to increase repeat visits.

5) LocBox. LocBox is a tool that local merchants can use to retain, re-engage, and profit from their daily deal customers. Many businesses that run deal promotions aren’t sure what to do with all the customer information they gather during the process. Rather than letting that information go to waste, merchants can import it directly into their LocBox accounts and use it to send targeted email promotions that go out to customers on their birthdays or during slow times of the year. LocBox is an excellent way for businesses to continue benefiting from their daily deals long after their promotional periods are through.

6) Groupon Scheduler. While not technically a CRM tool, businesses looking for a free alternative to more robust applications can use Groupon Scheduler to improve customer retention rates. Groupon says its tool is ideally suited for salons, spas, and scheduled activities, however, it’s features — including an online scheduling system and customer history tracking — make it easier for businesses to successfully manage the onslaught of new customers during the first and last days of their promotions. Groupon Scheduler can also be used to track how many customers have returned once their deals are redeemed.

Stephanie Miles is a journalist who covers personal finance, technology, and real estate. As Street Fight’s senior editor, she is particularly interested in how local merchants and national brands are utilizing hyperlocal technology to reach consumers. She has written for FHM, the Daily News, Working World, Gawker, Cityfile, and Recessionwire.