Our 5 Client Happiness Hacks for Digital Agencies to improve retention

If you look through advice aimed at agencies, you’ll quickly notice that it almost all focuses on landing more clients. But that’s just part of the story. You can also get more referrals by keeping your existing clients happy by using these five client happiness hacks.

Getting started is easy. Pick any hack from the list and try to use it this week. Then come back to this page and choose another one. Alternatively, if you’re focused on a single large client, put all these hacks into action faster to keep that big client – and your bank account – happy.

Pleskj shows how to keep clients happy when you're running a digital agency. Check outthis guy's happy face.

Hack #1: Proactively seek client feedback

If you wait for a client to complain about a problem, your agency is already in trouble. It’s damage control and burn the midnight oil time to make them happy again. Instead of assuming all is well, asking for client feedback regularly.

You’ll quickly strengthen your relationship with your client. And hear about problems when they’re still small and easy to deal with. You also find out about new project opportunities. Maybe they need a mobile app after the website’s finished? This approach also visibly demonstrates you care about your client’s success.

Putting this client happiness hack into action

  • Check out the book Crucial Conversations. On occasion (and hopefully rarely!), your clients will blast you with bad news. This book is full of helpful tools you and your team can use to navigate these high-stakes conversations smoothly.
  • Use surveys. Use an online survey tool like Survey Monkey to gather feedback from your clients at the end of each project, or annually for retainer clients.

Hack #2: Improve WordPress reliability

WordPress can be endlessly customized with plugins and other extension tools. Manually tracking every aspect of WordPress just doesn’t scale up. Unless you want to hire dedicated WordPress administrators, you might want to consider WP Toolkit by Plesk.

Using WP Toolkit improves client happiness in several ways. It enhances WordPress website security, so you won’t have to deal with the nightmare of a hacked client website. Furthermore, your clients will have access to all the latest capabilities because updates will be automated. Finally, you will have the ability to test new features in a test environment.

Putting this client happiness hack into action

  • Calculate the cost of manual WordPress work. Once you had it up, you will be surprised. We bet you are spending several hours per month per client just keeping WordPress sites up to date.
  • Upgrade your client’s WordPress experience. Check out the WP Toolkit and all it has to offer by clicking below.

Hack #3: Never miss a digital beat with Plesk

How many digital services and servers do you use each week for your clients?

If you have five clients, then it’s probably dozens. All these services bring advantages – like marketing automation and the ability to experiment on test servers. But there’s a dark side to all these services. What happens if you lose track of a critical service?

Your client’s site may go down, or a plugin may break. Using Plesk, you’ll have a single view that covers all your subscriptions, servers, and services. Your consistent delivery means that clients will never need to wonder or doubt your ability to deliver.

Putting this client happiness hack into action

  • Write up a list of your current services. If you have more than 10 critical services and servers, you need a better process.
  • Adopt Plesk to organize your agency’s services. If you are not organized, you cannot create results for your clients.

Hack #4: Challenge the client’s assumptions

Yes, you read that right. Challenging your client’s assumptions about their websites is critical to building long-term happiness. Here are a few ways to do that.

Challenge the client’s focus on custom development. Unlike digital agency owners, most clients are not immersed in the world of plugins, marketing automation, and related tools. When relevant, look for opportunities to propose using an off the shelf solution instead of building a new feature from scratch. Your client will save money, and the project will hit the finish line faster.

Identify the weak link in the client’s digital strategy. Your client may be focused on having a beautiful, high-performing website that can serve tens of thousands of users at a time. What about quality traffic? Without that, the client website will be a ghost town. If the traffic plan is weak, the client will not fall short of their business goals. They will be unhappy and may even blame the agency for not alerting them to the situation.

Putting this client happiness hack into action

  • Review your scope documents. Dust off these files and see what gaps you can find.
  • Ask the magic wand question. If your client had a magic wand to improve their business instantly, what kind of improvement would they like?

Hack #5: Carve out time for value-added ideas

What’s the difference between a right agency and a great agency? You might say creativity. That’s part of the story. Think about it from the client’s side. Why is creativity valuable? It helps them to achieve their goals faster.

To make your client’s happier, develop ideas that go beyond the assignment. Start with delivering the project – providing a new WordPress website. After that is complete, what other ways can you add value? Take a look at the client’s email list – is it active and growing? Alternatively, look at ways to reduce customer acquisition cost by adding referrals.

Putting this client happiness hack into action

  • Develop multiple option proposals. As consultant Alan Weiss recommends, every proposal you develop should include multiple options. The basic option will address what the client has requested while the other options add increasing value.
  • Look for the client’s blind spots. The client is deeply involved in their business, so they are going to have blind spots. To make your clients happier, constantly look for problems that you can fix. Propose additional projects to solve those problems.

What happens after you use these client happiness hacks

Using the client happiness hacks once is a good start. Making them into a regular habit is even better. By using these habits and Plesk to boost client happiness, you will be able to ask for and get referrals easily. Even better, you will feel better about your business because client complaints will become a distant memory.


  1. Great tips, Debbie.

    Keeping customers happy and engaged is very important if you want to hold on to them or them to you far longer than a couple of weeks or months. We all know that it’s not just the product but also how you treat your customers or how you make them feel.

    I especially like tips 1 and 2. We conduct regular customer feedback in order to get a feel for the customers’ feelings towards our services. We also efficiently cater to them with the help of a tool called Process Street.

    Here is another good example of how Process Street has become pivotal to a company’s customer relation: https://www.process.st/case-study-denalitek/. We love this tool so much and feel that everybody should at least know about it. 😉

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