The retention of customers and the creation of customer loyalty is a huge driver of profits. If an organisation were able to increase customer retention by just 1%, such an improvement would have a significant impact on profitability.
But what are the underlying factors of loyalty? Significant research has been conducted over the years on this very subject, and at a basic human level we’re often told that in personal relationships ‘women are more loyal than men’. At a psychological level we’re also told that women are more interdependent as people whereas men are considered to be more independent. Both of these theories would lead us to believe that, generally speaking, women are more loyal than men. There is another theory though, which states that everyone, regardless of gender, has a strong need to belong. But what they need to belong to is different. Women, we find, are interdependent with individuals, and men with groups.
This article by Stijn van Osselaer, Valentyna Melnyk & Tammo H. A. Bijmolt discusses the what drives customer loyalty in men versus women. The questions we posed were: Are men less loyal generally as customers? Or, if women are more loyal to individuals - for example, to individual sales people and service providers - then are men more loyal to groups and group-like entities such as retail chains?