Howto

7 Types of Customers and How to Convert Each One: A Complete Guide

Knowing who your prospects are is key to growing your brand. While it might be simpler to see your customers as one collective audience, each buyer or potential buyer comes to your store or website with something different in mind.

Once your business figures out the buyer intent for each, it becomes much easier to convert them and win over their loyalty. This is because you can then tailor your marketing strategies and give personalized experiences to meet their specific needs.

An overall good experience with your brand not only increases the likelihood of conversion but also fosters a sense of connection and value, which in turn cultivates loyalty and encourages repeat business. 

So what are the most common types of customers you’ll come across? And how do you deal with them? 

Let us go over them one by one.


7 Most Common Types of Customers and How to Convert Them

  1. Loyal Customers
  2. New Customers
  3. Customers Looking for a Deal 
  4. Impulse Buyers
  5. Referral Customers
  6. Lapsed Customers
  7. Angry Customers

1. Loyal Customers

Loyal customers are individuals who consistently choose your business’s products or services over competitors, often over a long period. Their loyalty can stem from various factors, including satisfaction with the product or service, positive emotional connections, and trust in the brand.
Their lifetime value is typically higher than that of one-time buyers because they make purchases more frequently and over a longer period. They are also significantly more cost-efficient because they reduce the need for extensive marketing and sales efforts.


A. What are they looking for?

A loyal customer with a lot of shopping bags, window shopping

Loyal customers look for a blend of consistency, exclusivity, personalization, and appreciation. They value access to benefits that are not available to other customers, such as early product releases, exclusive offers, or special services. 

They expect brands to ensure that there is continual improvement and innovation in the products, services, and overall customer experience, showing that your business is evolving to meet their changing needs.


B. How should you deal with them?

Exceptional customer service plays a pivotal role in keeping loyal customers happy. Use customer data to personalize their experience with your business, whether it’s through tailored recommendations, personalized offers, or by keeping track of their preferences and past interactions.

They also expect responsive and supportive assistance. They want to feel a connection with your business whether through shared values, engaging content, or a sense of community. 

Recognize and appreciate their loyalty regularly. This can be through thank-you notes, birthday or anniversary messages, or surprise gifts. Small gestures can make a big difference in maintaining loyalty and usually go a long way.

Lastly, do not forget that consistent feedback and implementation are the key. Loyal customers are the ones who usually provide the most constructive feedback. Showing that you value their input by implementing their suggestions where feasible, establishes a sense of connection and trust.


2. New Customers

The next type of customer is called ‘New Customers’. These are individuals who have recently engaged with your business for the first time. They are at the initial stage of the customer lifecycle and can potentially turn into future loyal customers if their initial experiences are positive. 

These customers are crucial for business growth, as they help you expand your customer base, increase revenue, and build brand awareness.


A. What are they looking for?

New customers generally look for reliable information and a positive first experience. They prioritize quality, seek social proof, and value for money.


B. How should you deal with them?

Provide a smooth onboarding and easy access to any information. Be it educating them about your products or services so that they can make the most of their purchase, or be it regarding your business policies like appointment booking and cancellations, returns, exchanges, etc.

Being transparent about your business practices fosters trust. 

Ensure that your new customers have easy access to customer service, receive prompt and helpful responses to inquiries or issues, and have a great overall first experience with your business. This will highly increase the chances of your follow-up strategies working to retain them further. 


3. Customers Looking for a Deal

A customer asking about a deal to a cafe owner

Customers looking for a deal are those who prioritize finding products or services at reduced prices, special offers, or bundled promotions. These customers are highly sensitive towards pricing and usually more loyal to good deals than brands. 

They are more likely to subscribe to newsletters, follow your business on social media, and use apps that alert them about sales and promotions. They often compare prices and deals across platforms, competitors, or stores to ensure they are getting the best offer.


A. What are they looking for?

These customers are motivated by the perceived value they get for their money and are often more willing to make a purchase when they feel they are getting more bang for their buck. 

In fact, according to Slickdeals’ survey, 52% of respondents said they would rather take advantage of a deal than pay full price! This shows that their purchasing decisions are heavily influenced by discounts, sales, loyalty rewards, and other incentives that lower the overall cost of the product or service. 


B. How should you deal with them?

Offer competitive pricing and make sure to promote any upcoming or ongoing sales, discounts, and promotions through various channels, such as email marketing, social media, and your website. Leverage limited-time offers to prompt immediate action from these customers.

Build a loyalty program. This can help you encourage repeat business by rewarding customers for their loyalty with points, discounts, or exclusive deals. 

For example, you can implement a basic tiered loyalty program that offers better discounts to customers who spend more at your business or have stuck with you the longest. You can also bundle up your products and services at a reduced total cost to encourage larger spending.


4. Impulse Buyers

Did you know that approximately 84% of Americans have indulged in impulse buying at least once? But what is impulse buying? It is nothing but buying without any prior intention of doing so and it usually occurs after customers experience a spontaneous urge to buy which is often without any hesitation. 


A. What are they looking for?

Impulse buyers are drawn to immediate gratification and the thrill of the moment. They want instant satisfaction and excitement in their purchases. For them, it’s all about the “must-have” factor in a product or service. 

Convenience and accessibility play a crucial role – easy availability and a hassle-free buying process are key for impulse buyers, who are more inclined to make spur-of-the-moment decisions based on immediate desire rather than deliberate planning.


B. How should you deal with them?

Impulse purchases are all about the right timing and strategic product placement. Create a path for the customers to follow when at your business. Keep the lower priced impulse buys at the checkout, or around the high-demand products. 

If you are a service-based business owner, anticipate your customers’ wants and needs and then use the most effective way to communicate the urgency of purchase. Finding the right time to cross-sell and upsell your services and products is the key.  


5. Referral Customers

Referral customers are individuals who are introduced to a business or its products/services through the recommendations of existing customers, friends, family members, or professional acquaintances. 

Two customers window-shopping

A. What are they looking for?

Referral customers are attracted to brands offering top-notch quality and reliability. This includes everything from product or service quality to customer service and responsiveness.

They want to know that they can trust a brand, which is why they so readily buy from brands their friends and family refer them to. In fact, according to a recent study that surveyed consumers from 56 different countries, 88% of consumers said they trusted recommendations from people they knew, above all other forms of marketing messaging.

Given that they’ve been referred by someone who presumably knows them well, referral customers often also expect some amount of special treatment and a degree of personalization in their interactions with your brand, reflecting an understanding of their specific needs and preferences.


B. How should you deal with them?

Acknowledge the referral and offer a warm welcome. You can consider providing a special offer or discount as a thank you for choosing your brand based on someone else’s recommendation. Doing this can also incentivize further referrals. 

Ensure that they receive the highest level of service, reinforcing the positive things they’ve heard about your brand. Quick responses, personalized attention, and going above and beyond can turn these customers into loyal advocates.

Actively seek feedback and keep them engaged with regular updates about new products, services, or offers. Tailored communication that reflects their interests and previous interactions with your brand can enhance personalization and retention.

And lastly, if you haven’t gotten around it yet, establish a strong referral program for your business. If you already have one in place, continuously refine it based on feedback and effectiveness. This can help turn satisfied referral customers into referrers themselves.


6. Lapsed Customers 

Lapsed customers are individuals who have previously purchased products or services from a business but have not made any transactions or engaged with the business for a significant period. 


A. What are they looking for?

Such customers are often looking for reassurance that their concerns will be addressed, their needs will be met, and their loyalty will be valued. They need a compelling reason to come back – be it enhanced products or services, improved customer experience, or even personalized offers. By understanding their motivations and implementing a thoughtful win-back strategy, businesses can increase the likelihood of successfully re-engaging with them.


B. How should you deal with them?

Understand why they left. Conduct surveys, analyze feedback, or review past interactions to identify common reasons for their departure. Listen actively and adapt accordingly. Reach out with personalized messages that acknowledge their previous relationship with your brand. 

Offer incentives like discounts or loyalty rewards and demonstrate your commitment to improving their experience and overall satisfaction. Be sure to consistently work on your business reputation alongside to keep your brand fresh and positive in everyone’s minds. 


7. Angry Customers

Angry customers are those who express dissatisfaction, frustration, or sometimes outrage due to a perceived failure in the product, service, or customer experience. These customers may have encountered problems, delays, misunderstandings, or perceived mistreatment. 

These customers can potentially damage your business reputation through word-of-mouth negative publicity or online reviews, deterring other customers from choosing to engage with you.


A. What are they looking for?

Despite their anger, many of them are still seeking a resolution to their problem or a satisfactory outcome to address their concerns. They often have high expectations for the products, services, or customer service interactions based on previous experiences, promises, or industry standards. 


​​B. How should you deal with them?

Stay calm, empathetic, and listen actively. Apologize for any inconvenience caused, acknowledge their frustration, and try to validate their concerns before proposing any practical solutions or alternatives to address their problems. 

Work efficiently towards a swift resolution to prevent further escalation of anger in order to restore their satisfaction. 

After the issue has been resolved, make sure to follow up with the customer to ensure their satisfaction. Thank them for bringing the issue to your attention and use this opportunity to reinforce your commitment to improving and providing excellent customer service. 


Final Thoughts 

Finding and keeping customers is a game that requires some finessing for brand longevity. Each type of customer has their preferences and priorities when it comes to brands. Recognizing these differences allows a brand to tailor its approach effectively. 

By understanding the needs of loyal customers seeking reliability, newcomers seeking value and information, cost-conscious customers seeking deals, impulse buyers seeking instant satisfaction, referral-driven customers seeking brand alignment, disengaged customers looking to feel valued, or angry customers seeking quick resolution and satisfaction – brands can tailor targeted strategies to effectively convert more individuals into loyal customers. 

We hope this blog helped you identify different types of customers and how to convert each. One last tip, successful conversion isn’t just about transactions, it’s about building lasting relationships founded on trust, relevance, and genuine engagement.


About Appointy

We at Appointy, help business owners grow and run their businesses with our online scheduling software. This blog was a part of our ‘Manage your Business’ category, where we provide expert tips, and resources, or simply talk about the challenges that small and medium businesses face every day. 

If you have any thoughts on this blog or would like to chat about your business struggles and achievements, let us know in the comments below. 

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