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5 ways to build customer loyalty

5 ways to build customer loyalty before opening your shop

5 July 2024

Solid customer loyalty is a fundamental pillar of any successful business, but building a loyal customer base is not always easy. Establishing strong customer loyalty from the very start of your business will set you apart from competitors and make your business profitable from the beginning. In this article, we’ll explore 5 effective techniques for developing your customer loyalty strategy before your store even opens.

Andrea Landi

1. Create an engaging online presence

In the digital age, establishing a strong online presence is essential for your business. 

Start by creating a social media profile dedicated to your shop on each social media platform used by your target audience. 

Focus your digital presence on the channels preferred by your target customers. For example, if you aim to attract Gen Z and Millennials customers, you should first develop a strong social presence on TikTok, whereas if your target is Generation X and Baby Boomers, your main focus should be Facebook. 

Begin by building a popular profile on one social media platform before expanding to others. 

Before your shop opening, your social media channels can be a great tool to create hype and interest around your business launch. Use social media to regularly share behind-the-scenes insights into your business preparation, tease your audience about the opening day, and arouse interest by mentioning new and exciting things to come.

Pro tip

create a website to showcase your “opening soon” project. It can be a simple page explaining the upcoming business. Make sure it’s visually attractive and optimise it for SEO to improve your visibility on search engines.

2. Set up a pre-launch marketing program

Consider setting up a pre-launch marketing program. Offer exclusive incentives to people who sign up to your mailing list before the launch, such as discounts, gifts or premium service for their first purchase. 

You can also create a sense of community using marketing strategies by involving your future customers in the creation process. Solicit their opinions on certain aspects of your store, such as product selection or layout. Regularly communicate on the progress of your project to maintain their interest and engagement.

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3. Establish strategic partnerships

Partnerships with complementary businesses can be an excellent way to gain visibility and attract future customers. 

Start by searching and identifying local brands or businesses that share your values, target an audience similar to yours and offer a service or a product that can match well with the offer you are planning for your shop. 

Organise joint events, such as workshops or launch parties, to create buzz around your imminent opening. These collaborations will allow you to benefit from your partners’ reputation and clientele.

Consider offering special packages that combine a product or service from your partner with an offer from your business. For example, you could provide a 10% discount at your shop with the purchase of a partner’s product.

4. Collect reviews and testimonials in advance

Reviews and testimonials from satisfied customers are powerful tools for building customer loyalty and enhancing conversion rates. Many customers have the habit of searching for reviews before visiting a shop or making a purchase. 

Even before you open, you can solicit feedback from your first test customers, such as friends, family or early supporters who helped you test your concept. Ask them to share their positive experiences on your website, on Google reviews, and on your social media channel of preference. You can also include these testimonials in your newsletters or brochures. This will build trust and interest among your prospect clients.

5. Design an attractive loyalty program

A well-designed loyalty program can be an excellent way of building customer loyalty right from the start. 

Start thinking about the loyalty program you want to develop for your shop before you open. Conduct market research of comparable businesses to see which loyalty programmes appear to be most successful on the market, and consider how to differentiate your programme from the others to make it even more appealing. Think about the rewards that would be most attractive to your target audience, such as progressive discounts, points convertible into gifts or exclusive benefits. 

You can read more about expert tips to build a strong loyalty program at this link

Once you have planned your loyalty programme, communicate the benefits in advance to generate interest and start collecting pre-registrations before the opening.  Make registration quick and easy, whether online or in-store.

Establishing and maintaining customer loyalty

By implementing these 5 techniques for customer loyalty before your shop even opens, you will set a strong foundation for a loyal customer base. 

Keep in mind that customer loyalty is an ongoing process. Once you have attracted a customer and created a relationship of trust, it’s important to continue nurturing a positive relationship and experience to ensure they stay loyal over time. 

To continue developing a positive relationship with your customers after the opening, focus on offering exceptional customer service, personalising your approach and listening to their needs. 

With a solid loyalty strategy, you’ll turn your first customers into brand ambassadors, contributing to your future growth.

To take your customer loyalty strategy a step further, explore specialised tools such as customer relationship management (CRM) softwares or intelligent cash register solutions. These tools will enable you to automate certain processes, better understand your customers’ behaviour and optimise their in-store experience.

Always bear in mind that every interaction counts and that customer loyalty is the key to making your business thrive in the long term.

By combining these pre-opening loyalty techniques with an ongoing approach to improving the customer experience, your business will benefit from lasting success.


When should I start implementing my customer loyalty strategy?

Ideally, you should start working on your customer loyalty strategy a few months before your opening, this will give you the time to build an online presence on Google and the social media channel of your choice, as well as set up partnerships with other businesses and start building the interest of your future customers. 

What are the benefits of a loyalty program for my business?

A well-designed loyalty programme can be a fundamental factor for your business’s success and a solid foundation for your business growth. Loyal customers tend to return to the shop more frequently and spend more than the average customers. Additionally, your business advocates will be key to building a positive image of your brand to other existing customers as well as attracting new ones to your shop. 

How can I measure the effectiveness of my customer loyalty strategy?

To assess the effectiveness of your customer loyalty strategy, you can track various key performance indicators (KPIs) such as customer retention rate, number of customers enrolled in your loyalty program, sales generated by loyal customers or customer satisfaction rate. By monitoring those metrics you will be able to adjust your offer and improve your loyalty programme over time. 

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