Customer loyalty is the result of consistent positive experiences and satisfaction. Greater customer loyalty leads to increased sales. In addition, studies have even shown that it costs six to seven times more to acquire a new customer than keep an old one.

Here are four ways to increase customer loyalty:

1. Say thank you, and mean it. It takes effort to make sure that each “thank you” sounds genuine and heartfelt, but it’s worth it. Your employees should be mindful of what these words should sound like every time they are said.

2. Do what you say you’re going to do. If you make a promise, keep it. If you can’t keep it, don’t make the promise. This can be on social media, in advertising and in what you say to a customer face-to-face.

3. Make sure that your customers can communicate with you. You want your customers to easily reach you when they have a question or concern. If you make it easy, you and your team can be more responsive to their issues, and you can avoid things escalating out of your control. This means making sure you are monitoring phones, email and social networks.

4. Acknowledge customer milestones. Do you have a customer that has been with you since you started your business? Or a customer that has used your product or service in a unique way? Acknowledge them! Whether a social media post, a blog feature or a thoughtful gift, such as a gift box of goodies or a special something of their choosing, the act of acknowledgement will stand out and make a difference to your customer.

Remember, caring is the most powerful marketing strategy there is.