It’s ubiquitous to use loyalty programs when shopping at chain restaurants. The rationale is simple – give people a reason to come to a business, and they’ll keep returning. Whether it’s purchasing 5 subs to get the 6th sub free or amassing points to get a free cup of coffee, customers may not be loyal to the company, but the value of the program keeps them coming back. Fortunately, small businesses can capitalize on customer loyalty programs for building their businesses.
Every small business should have an app; app development is something easily outsourced and is quite cost-effective. The reason apps work is people lose paper cards. Apps allow them to pay for goods and services, and these apps allow customers to pre-load money towards purchases. Therefore, apps do double the work – customers allocate money towards purchases and keep track of customer progress in a loyalty program. Also, push notifications are great about letting customers know what’s coming.
The goal is getting customers to spend money in a business, and rewards act as incentive for customers to do exactly that. The key is giving them several different ways of getting rewards. Starbucks offers several methods of obtaining points. They’ll use games or promotions. By the time a customer reaches the end of a Starbucks promotion, the company has made money hand over fist, so they can afford to give away a free latte. Structure rewards around quantifiable customer activity, and the rewards themselves end up being cost neutral.
It’s possible to enroll in rewards programs in many different ways. For example, at Winn-Dixie, customers enroll through simply providing their phone number and getting a bar code associated with the phone number. They can connect with the app as well, or on the credit card station at the check out. The information goes to the same place, but allowing customers to have different access points casts a wider net and ensnares people otherwise skeptical of rewards programs.
Naming a rewards program is important – it can’t be just “X Business Rewards.” While the purpose of the program is stated, there’s no company value embedded in the name itself. The best rewards programs embed value to customers in the rewards program name. This creates a deeper connection with customers and allows for a business to live up to their mission statement as well.
Getting started with an app or building out rewards programs is easy with the expertise of ROI consultants. Have your customers coming back regularly using these programs. Email here.