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How to increase customer loyalty in eCommerce

In today’s fast-paced eCommerce landscape, customer loyalty is not just a strategy—it’s a necessity. With increasing competition, rising ad costs, and evolving consumer preferences, businesses are seeking innovative ways to stand out and build lasting relationships with their customers. One marketing strategy gaining traction is the give-back donation model, exemplified by platforms like i=Change. Here we explore how eCommerce brands can harness the power of philanthropy to drive brand loyalty, increase engagement and drive increased conversions.

What is customer loyalty for eCommerce?

Customer loyalty in eCommerce refers to the tendency of customers to repeatedly purchase from a particular online store over time. At its core, it embodies the emotional connection and trust that consumers develop towards a particular brand, compelling them to choose it consistently over alternatives. This loyalty is cultivated through a series of positive experiences, personalised engagement and exceptional service that resonate with the customer on a deeper level.

In the crowded online marketplace, consumers are bombarded with choices, making it essential for brands to differentiate themselves and establish a distinct identity. Focusing on enhancing brand values and mission through giving back to the community can cause customers to feel a strong affinity towards the brand, meaning they are more likely to remain loyal and actively engage with the brand.

One key aspect of customer loyalty in eCommerce is repeat purchase behaviour. When customers consistently return to a specific online store for their shopping needs, it indicates satisfaction and trust in the brand’s offerings, service and overall shopping experience. This loyalty exceeds individual transactions, fostering a long-term relationship that is mutually beneficial for both the customer and the brand.  Positive reviews, testimonials and user-generated content further solidify a brand’s reputation and credibility, serving as powerful endorsements that attract new customers and reinforce loyalty among existing ones.

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Why do eCommerce brands need customer loyalty more than ever before?

Competitive market:

The eCommerce sphere is saturated with countless brands vying for consumers’ attention. With new entrants constantly emerging and established businesses expanding their offerings, standing out from the crowd requires more than just providing quality products. Building a loyal customer base serves as a competitive advantage, fostering long-term relationships that endure time. Acquiring new customers through advertising has become increasingly expensive in the competitive digital landscape. As platforms like Facebook and Google continue to monetise their ad spaces, eCommerce brands are facing escalating acquisition costs, making it financially wise to focus on retaining existing customers.

Alignment with personal values:

In the current socially conscious era, consumers are increasingly drawn to brands that align with their personal values and beliefs. Whether it’s environmental sustainability, ethical sourcing or social responsibility, customers value eCommerce brands that mirror their principles and contribute positively to the world. Through advocating for good causes, brands can leverage their platform to make a meaningful impact and inspire brand loyalty among their audience. Customers appreciate brands that demonstrate a genuine commitment to philanthropy, and by aligning with such initiatives, eCommerce companies can strengthen their connection with customers and differentiate themselves.

Creating shared purpose:

By championing causes that matter to their customers, eCommerce brands can create a sense of shared purpose that goes beyond the transaction. When customers perceive a brand as an ally in advancing causes they care about, they are more likely to remain loyal and actively support its mission. This shared sense of purpose fosters a deeper emotional connection between the brand and its customers, driving engagement, advocacy and long-term loyalty. By authentically aligning with personal values and supporting social good, online retailers can cultivate a loyal customer base that not only drives business growth but also contributes to positive change in the world.

The top eComm customer loyalty strategy for 2024

The leading eCommerce customer loyalty strategy in 2024 is the increasing benefits of the cause marketing donation model. This customer loyalty strategy involves the integration of philanthropy into a business’s framework, where a percentage of each sale is directed towards supporting charitable causes, aligning the brand’s actions with its values and resonating with socially conscious consumers.

By transparently communicating a brands commitment to social responsibility and allowing customers to participate in choosing the causes they wish to support, eComm brands can foster a sense of community and shared purpose. Customers are more inclined to support brands that prioritise purpose over profit, leading to increased trust, repeat purchases and an overall higher lifetime value.

By associating a brand with meaningful causes, ecommerce brands can differentiate themselves in the competitive market, attracting and retaining customers who share their values and vision for a better world.

How has cause marketing enhanced eCommerce performance to-date?

Numerous eCommerce businesses have experienced remarkable increases in sales and customer retention by embracing the cause marketing donation model.

Increased social engagement:

Renowned swimwear brand Seafolly witnessed a significant uptick in social engagement, boasting a 2.7x return on investment and a 100% conversion increase. By sharing their brand’s purpose and commitment to charitable causes on social channels, Seafolly saw a remarkable 66% increase in engagement compared to their usual metrics.

Increased email sign-ups:

Fashion label We Are Kindred saw a surge in email sign-ups by highlighting their partnership with i=Change in their subscriber pop-up message, resulting in a 37% increase in sign-ups compared to discount-only messaging.

Increased online sales:

ByCharlotte, a jewellery brand, reported a notable increase in conversions through their double donation campaign. Without offering discounts and instead doubling their donation amount, ByCharlotte saw a remarkable 33% increase in online conversions during their International Day of the Girl campaign. These success stories demonstrate the effectiveness of the cause marketing donation model in driving sales, enhancing customer engagement, and strengthening brand loyalty in the competitive landscape of eCommerce.

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Integrating philanthropy into business operations and branding strategy has become increasingly vital to customer retention and loyalty. i=Change offers a streamlined approach to implementing cause marketing, empowering eCommerce brands to make a difference while enhancing customer engagement and loyalty.

With i=Change, businesses can effortlessly allocate a portion of each sale towards charitable causes, providing customers with the opportunity to choose where their contribution goes. Utilising the i=Change integrations, such as the Shopify donation app, i=Change provides real-time tracking of the impact generated by each purchase, offering transparency and accountability. By partnering with i=Change, eCommerce brands not only demonstrate their commitment to social responsibility, but also align with consumer expectations for purpose-driven brands.

With over $9 million raised and counting, i=Change presents an impactful opportunity for eCommerce brands to make a difference and accelerate their brand loyalty.

Join i=Change today to harness the transformative power of cause marketing and drive positive change in the world.

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Shop brands giving back

  • Splice Boutique gives from every sale to:

    • Protect a woman
    • Clean the sea
    • Support mental health
    Splice Boutique
  • Kinga Csilla gives from every sale to:

    • Protect a woman
    • Restore the land
    • Support homeless youth
    Kinga Csilla
  • Clarins NZ gives from every sale to:

    • Support a girl's education
    • Support healthy children
    • Provide a safe birth
    Clarins NZ
  • Mr The Label campaign image

    MR The Label gives from every sale to:

    • End violence against women
    • Support mental health
    • Support children in emergencies
    MR The Label
  • EcoCaffè gives from every sale to:

    • Feed aussies in crisis
    • Clean the sea
    • Support mental health
    EcoCaffè
  • In Practice Skincare gives from every sale to:

    • Protect a woman
    • Restore the land
    • Support mental health
    In Practice Skincare
  • Loungey gives from every sale to:

    • Respond to emergencies
    • Help restore sight
    • Support kids with cancer
    Loungey
  • Bamboozld gives from every sale to:

    • Support mental health
    • Clothe the vulnerable
    • Feed aussies in crisis
    Bamboozld
  • The Grampians Goods Co. gives from every sale to:

    • Restore the land
    • Restore the Reef
    • End violence against women
    The Grampians Goods Co.
  • Meir gives from every sale to:

    • Feed aussies in crisis
    • Restore the Reef
    • Support kids with cancer
    Meir
  • Lou Lou Australia gives from every sale to:

    • Bring joy to sick kids
    • Protect a woman
    • End the marriage of girls
    Lou Lou Australia
  • LANI New Beginnings gives from every sale to:

    • Restore dignity and hope
    • Bring joy to sick kids
    • Support mental health
    LANI New Beginnings
  • Astromantique gives from every sale to:

    • Restore the land
    • Clean the sea
    • Empower women in the Pacific
    Astromantique
  • Hemp Gallery gives from every sale to:

    • Empower with literacy
    • Feed aussies in crisis
    • Restore the land
    Hemp Gallery
  • S/W/F Boutique gives from every sale to:

    • Protect a woman
    • Support a child to recover
    • Prevent women dying
    S/W/F Boutique
  • ESSEN gives from every sale to:

    • Clean the sea
    • Restore the land
    • Support children in emergencies
    ESSEN
  • Little Wildling Co gives from every sale to:

    • Empower with literacy
    • Clean the sea
    • Restore the land
    Little Wildling Co
  • Nutra Nourished gives from every sale to:

    • Clean the sea
    • Clothe the vulnerable
    • Feed aussies in crisis
    Nutra Nourished