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More Than Just Points: Loyalty Programs Encourage Customers to Keep Coming Back

Loyalty drives frequency

Loyalty programs make your relationships with your customers stronger, driving value to your bottom line through recurring revenue. Nielsen’s Global Loyalty-Sentiment Survey found that 72% of customers will buy from a retailer with a loyalty program over one without. Repeat customers also spend 67% more than new customers. It typically costs 5-10 times more to acquire new customers than it does to retain customers, so focusing on driving more frequent visits in actually more profitable for your business.

However, just having a loyalty program in place does not mean it will be effective. Your reward structure and how you engage with your customers are the main drivers when it comes to building and maintaining loyalty.

Be sure to design your incentives and rewards with your customer in mind. What kinds of rewards do they want? What will be valuable to your customer without hurting your bottom line?

Show your customers you’re thinking about them. Haven’t seen one of your regulars in a couple of weeks? Send them an email. Have a new service or menu item you want your customers to try? Share the exciting news!

Rewards Customers Want

Your program will be successful if you plan around what your customer wants and understand the monetary value of each reward. Loyalty is not about giving away free items all the time; it is about encouraging incremental spend! Rewards should engage and entice members, while being mindful of setting workable limits for your business to maintain the cost of items rewarded.

Rewards don’t have to cost your business much; in fact, some can be completely free! Customers, especially millennials, value experiential rewards such as exclusive access to sales or merchandise. Some customer may value having a menu item named after them more than a discount or free item, and it’s at no cost to your business.

By setting both attainable rewards and stretch goal rewards, you can motivate members to visit more often. Allowing quick wins appeases the instantly gratified customer and motivates customers to continue participating in your program. Greater value rewards that require more visits, entices customers to visit more often to gain a reward that is of greater perceived value (remember, this can be an experiential reward).

Stay in Touch

In a world where consumers are hit heavily with marketing messages 24/7, they want to feel special and valued by the places they do business with. A great way to stay in touch with your customers is through email marketing. While customers may be hesitant to give out their email address for yet another marketing message, they’re more likely to do so if they’re getting value, which is why loyalty programs are so effective for capturing email addresses.

By setting up automated marketing emails to go out to customers that haven’t visited your business recently, you’re showing customers that you value their business. Pairing those emails with an offer sweetens the deal and really incentivizes that customer to return to your business time and time again.

Have a new menu item? A big event you’re promoting? Tell your customers about it! Make your customers feel like VIPs by giving them exclusive or first access to sales, new products, and events by simply sending an email campaign.

Use incentives and time-based promotions to drive more frequent visits and measurable incremental purchases. This is the best combo, and the most effective way to bring your customers back!

We understand what customers look for in a loyalty program and what business owners need to create a program that drives their bottom line. If you want to increase visit frequency, schedule a demo of Belly for Business.