How your actions influence customer’s behavior for years to come

Last fall I planted some oats to prevent weeds and to cut for mulch.

But I timed it wrong and much of them produced seed.

That meant I had to spend a lot of time to sort through the oats and keep the seed out of my garden beds. Even then, I missed a lot of seeds so this year the oat seeds started to grow where they shouldn’t have. That meant even more time spent weeding.

This year I cut the oats early along with other mulch plants before they grew seeds. That will prevent them from turning into weeds next year.

The few areas of oats I didn’t get to I just let them reseed themselves and regrow over winter. (The neighborhood dogs like to eat the oats when they walk by, which keeps them away from the flowers)

A lot of my gardening requires looking ahead and reasoning what will happen next season or even next year. Those are the parts I enjoy.

This long-term thinking needs to happen with customers in your Shopify store too. The behavior you encourage today can influence how they act for years to come.

Suppose you run a 40%-off ad to attract customers right now. But what will happen next?

Will those customers buy again or go to your competitor next time who has a cheaper price?

Will they buy at your regular price? Or will they demand 40% off again?

Did you make any actual profit from them? If you’re going to “make it up over-time” is their later orders profitable and making up for non-buyers and early orders?

You won’t ever know how all of it will work but having a good idea of the possibilities can change what you do now and what you encourage. Perhaps you limit the discount to 10% or you offer an added bonus instead of discounting.

Repeat Customer Insights and the Cohort report specifically can help you see these second order effects. You can use some of the metrics to spot trouble (or opportunity) areas and also plan for future campaigns.

Eric Davis

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