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How to Improve Loyalty Programs in Retail Marketing

Loyalty programs are an effective way of encouraging an existing customer to return in the future. Something as simple as a free coffee or a discount can be the difference between repeat business or someone looking elsewhere. 

 

Their aim is to reward customers with something valuable to show they’re appreciated. So why do 67% of consumers feel as though loyalty programs don’t include offers that are relevant to them in any way? 

 

Importance of Loyalty Programs

As a general rule, it costs five times as much to attract a new customer than it does to retain an existing one. So it makes sense to do everything in your power to keep the same customers coming back again and again.

 

Loyalty programs are, of course, a great way of improving customer retention but are they doing enough? With so many retailers offering some form of reward scheme, it’s easy for one to pale in comparison to someone else's. 

 

Here are a few tips for improving loyalty programs:

 

  • Reward existing customers when they refer others to the scheme. Both parties should benefit.
  • Create tiers within the program. Reward your most loyal customers with extra benefits that entice others to reach this level. 
  • Random prize draws and giveaways to anyone that’s a part of the program. 
  • Make sure everything is easy and straightforward. No one should have to remember a series of security questions or lengthy passwords. 
  • Be reasonable. The first incentive shouldn’t be after 200 cups of coffee. The quicker someone can reap the rewards, the more likely they’ll shop with you. 
  • Ask for feedback about the program. See what customers are saying about you on social media and take some of their suggestions on board. 
  • Subvert expectations. Sticking with the coffee shop example, instead of one free coffee, reward a handful of lucky customers with free coffee for an entire month. 
  • Don’t ask for too much personal information when someone joins the program. People may feel uneasy and reluctant to part with their data. 
  • Avoid focusing on finding new members. Consider existing members and how you can ensure they’re as active as possible. 
  • Be flexible with requirements. If someone didn’t quite get that tenth coffee within the right time period, don’t punish them for it. 

 

Implement any of these quick wins and you should see a positive reaction from customers. This loyalty is worth a lot to any business and an increase in memberships usually translates to an upturn in success. 

 

Loyalty Program Integrations

Whatever type of loyalty program is in use, it can be integrated within the WiFi. An integration means that when customers want to use your WiFi, they can authenticate when logging in using the same credentials, creating a unified experience. 

 

The loyalty incentive can then be tailored to suit returning customers based on the information that’s been gathered through the WiFi, boosting sales and delighting customers at the same time. It’s another way to entice customers into joining so they can receive the benefits that are on offer. 

 

You can use this information to engage with visitors who’ve had a positive experience in the past and might be interested in other products and deals that you have available.  

 

WiFi networks that integrate with loyalty databases are useful because they allow you to collate valuable data all in one place. Having one centralised point makes remarketing efforts a lot more straightforward too.

 

Ready to Improve Your Customers’ Experience? 

A loyalty program is just one way of delighting customers and encouraging them to return in the future. Free WiFi, special discounts and memorable experiences are all useful ways of attracting attention to a store. 

 

It’s more important than ever for physical retailers to focus their efforts on improving their customers’ experience. Fail to delight customers and they’ll just take their business to digital alternatives. 

 

We’ve created a free guide that examines some of the most effective ways that retailers can improve the customer experience they provide. Innovative technologies are needed to meet evolving customer demands and our guide considers some of the ones we expect to see in the near future. 

 

For your copy of the guide, please click on the link below and see how you can drive engagement and improve experiences with new tech. 

 

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Rebecca Duffin

Rebecca Duffin

Rebecca Duffin

Rebecca is a creative, design-lead marketer with endless enthusiasm. She has worked for WiFi SPARK since 2012 and has an in-depth understanding of all elements of the business. She is responsible for lead generation, brand engagement and ensuring the company is the 'Go-To Provider' for more than just WiFi. Her specialities include general marketing, promotion, social media management, tender management & bid writing, copywriting, creative design, brand enforcement and exhibition management. Becky heads up the department for Rail and Healthcare - two of the company's three key sectors.