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Customer Retention vs. Acquisition: Which is More Important for Your Business?

Leveraging Acquisition and Retention Strategies for Ecommerce Success

When trying to grow your business and increase revenue, it can feel like your attention is split. On one hand, you need to invest in customer acquisition strategies to grow your reach and sales. On the other hand, you need to keep your current customer base satisfied so they continue coming back for more. 

In a perfect world, you wouldn’t have to choose between customer retention vs. acquisition. And realistically, you need to do a bit of both to succeed. But if you have limited resources, you should focus on a strategy with a high impact on growth and profitability. 

Customer acquisition campaigns are appealing because they’re often easier to implement and can produce quick results. Customer retention is a long game, and it takes commitment and patience to see the ROI of your efforts. However, investing in customer retention is worth it. 

Among customers who are loyal to a brand, 86% will recommend that company to friends and family. 66% will likely write a positive online review after a good experience. Loyal, repeat customers are essential to your brand’s reputation and growth.

The good news is that some retention strategies actually benefit both new and existing customers. Other efforts, like referral rewards and loyalty programs, are specifically aimed at thanking repeat customers for their ongoing support. There are also many ways to measure the success of your retention efforts and track your progress over time.


  • A new or returning customer makes a purchase
  • A customer adds something to their cart but does not complete the purchase
  • A customer opts into your marketing emails
  • A prospect that matches your ideal customer profile visits your website


  • Make a good first impression with your initial email flows. Shoppers appreciate personalization, so personalize emails and SMS messages based on customers’ unique demographic, financial, and lifestyle data whenever you can.
  • Use rewards and referral programs to thank your repeat customers and incentivize them to promote your brand. Rewards like product discounts are also a great way to turn first-time buyers into shoppers that keep coming back for more.
  • When you’re starting a new customer retention campaign or email flow, make sure your email list is clean and free of spam traps. 
  • Send personalized reminder emails to shoppers with abandoned carts. Reclaiming revenue from abandoned carts can provide a huge boost to your bottom line. 
  • Send customer feedback surveys and demonstrate genuine interest in customers’ concerns. When customers feel truly heard, it builds trust and earns their long-term loyalty

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