Blog Post

5 Keys to Payroll Client Retention

Statistics compiled by Econsultancy, an international ecommerce research firm, show that it costs five times as much to attract a new customer than to keep an existing one. And that’s not the only reason for making payroll client retention a priority. While costs are lower, profitability potential is significantly higher. The probability of selling to an existing customer is 60-70 percent, while the probability of selling to a new client plummets to just 5-20 percent. Plus, existing customers are 50 percent more likely to try new products and spend 31 percent more compared to new customers.

To that end, we offer these five top keys to payroll client retention:

  1. Know what your customer wants – and expect it to change: What your client needs today may vastly differ from what it will need a year or even a few months from now. Not only is it critical to take full accounting of a new client’s needs, goals and expectations at the onset of your contractual agreement, it’s even more important that you remain on top of those needs as they evolve and to be proactive about addressing additional needs that your clients may not see coming, such as new services necessitated by legislation or compliance updates.
  2. Show your client some love: A study by the Journal of Applied Social Psychology revealed that restaurant waiters could boost tips by 23 percent simply by delivering a second set of mints to customers’ tables. Here’s a hint: It’s not about the mints – It’s about the personalized experience. Occasional lunch or dinner meetings, holiday cards or contract anniversary gifts, as simple and inexpensive as a tin of cookies or a pair of tickets to a game, will go a long way in building rapport.
  3. Talk the right talk: Skip passive words and phrases for stronger, more actionable ones. Assure the client that you’re happy to help address any issue and give them a specific date and time when they’ll hear back from you for an update – then, stick to that deadline. And, never reach out to the client yourself to inform them about a problem without having several solutions ready for discussion.
  4. Reward loyalty: There’s a reason that the retail and restaurant worlds are saturated with loyalty rewards cards, smartphone apps and programs. They work. First, they help businesses keep track of client’s buying habits and preferences, and with that data in hand, retailers and restaurants gain the upper hand on competitors by offering customers solid reasons to bring their repeat business. Take a cue by offering your long-term clients discounts or other special treatment for renewing contracts or purchasing additional products and services.
  5. Never underestimate your competition: Underestimating your competitors’ intentions to lure away your clientele is a potentially devastating mistake. By the time your competition has scored the first meeting with your client, you’ve already lost significant traction. Keep the upper hand by developing a proactive strategy to ensure your clients’ needs are being anticipated and met continuously, that they are profiting from use of your products and services, and that they have no reason to jump ship when the competition comes calling.


Apex HCM specializes in giving payroll providers the essential tools needed to land and retain top-notch clients. We offer a full suite of payroll software solutions plus continuous service to assure that our clients and yours reach their goals and build their businesses faster, more efficiently and with higher profit potential. Request a demo or contact us directly at 877-750-2739.