Repeat Customer systems vary widely in size and sophistication, however they all have 3 basic tools at their very core.
The basic tools you need are:
1. A way to store information on your customer.
This does not need to be anything fancy – Excel is fine for the moment. However I would suggest you use something computerised as it will make moving to other systems easier in the future). If you already have a CRM then learn how to use it.
2. A way to track a purchase.
I a perfect world this would be a feed from an ecommerce system or an EPoS systems, but if you don’t have that, don’t worry. Just make a note of who has bought – you can work out what’s easiest for your business, but sometimes, creating a folder or labelling emails can be easier as you can upload those in bulk once a week.
3. A method of talking to your customers.
Most transactions now involve collection of email, but if not, could you implement a system that takes mobile number, or address or twitter name? Don’t expect this info to be completely free though – but a voucher that can be redeemed at the next purchase is a great bargaining tool to collect something from them. (Don’t go overboard though – ask for a small amount of data at each step.)
And that’s it. Even the most sophisticated Repeat Customer Systems use these 3 pieces as the basis of their systems.