Author: Cassie Scott
Nearly every large business has a customer-rewards program. These programs create loyal customers, attract new customers, increase sales and profits, and improve your business’s reputation. Small businesses can create similar programs and reap those benefits, too.
What’s a Customer-Rewards Program?
Customer-rewards programs, aka customer-loyalty programs, are marketing tactics that reward customers when they buy items, further increasing brand loyalty. Well-designed rewards programs make buying easy and offer exciting incentives, which entice customers to return and buy more.
Check out these facts:
- 81 percent of consumers are more likely to keep buying from brands that offer loyalty programs, according to the 2016 Bond Loyalty Report.
- Over 45 percent of consumers say earning rewards is a primary driver for buying from a brand, according to com.
- Those enrolled in customer-loyalty programs typically spend up to 18 percent more than other customers, according to Accenture.
- Retailers who compile loyalty-based data note a consistent 1 to 4 percent increase in sales and a 4 to 7 percent increase in profits, according to Boston Retail Partners.
Use these tips to create well-designed, customer-focused programs that encourage customers to return to your store to spend.
Be original and think up exciting rewards relevant to your business. Photo Credit: Shane Indrebo
Offer Exciting, Attainable Rewards
Rewards programs can offer hundreds of incentives, including points, prizes, discounts, coupons, cash-back, gift cards or other freebies. Whatever the reward, make sure it’s something customers want or they won’t bother signing up.
Be original and think up exciting rewards relevant to your business. For example, for every five range visits offer the sixth one free. Consider issuing punch cards to track your customers’ visits. Or create a season pass for basic bow tune-ups, and extend discounts on more advanced services. Both strategies usually bring customers back to your shop. Don’t forget to offer special deals on their birthdays. Most importantly, structure these programs so the rewards are attainable and your business remains profitable.
Offer Customers Many Ways to ‘Win’
It’s easy to create programs where customers collect points for every dollar spent, but give them other ways to interact with your business. Ask them to write reviews, refer friends, watch product videos, engage with your mobile app, share content on social media, or subscribe to your blog or newsletter. Most such tasks serve dual purposes. Some educate customers about your products or services, while others spread awareness of your brand. Either way, offer several ways for customers to earn rewards, which encourages them to participate in your programs – especially if they’re on a budget.
"When a rewards program can be moved from a punch card to an app, opportunities to interact and build customer loyalty grow exponentially," says Shep Hyken. Photo Credit: iStock
Consider an App
In a Forbes article, writer Shep Hyken notes that points and punch-cards are popular but limiting. He has a better idea.
“When a rewards program can be moved from a punch card to an app, opportunities to interact and build customer loyalty grow exponentially,” Hyken wrote. “An app can include features that are limited only by imagination. And the convenience of using an app is a powerful driver of loyalty. It’s human nature to stay with a company that is easy to do business with.”
Besides, apps are the future. According to a Boston Retail Partner study, 56 percent of retailers want mobile-optimized loyalty programs by 2020. And because nearly 75 percent of Americans own smartphones, a mobile-optimized customer-rewards program is fitting.
ATA’s Service Provider Can Help
If creating a program from scratch isn’t your thing, seek help from professionals. ATA service provider ProPhase Marketing offers a customer-loyalty program for archery retailers. Their software helps increase revenue through customer retention and satisfaction. You’ll work with loyalty marketing specialists to create a branded, automated rewards program that fits your budget and business model.
Not sure if a customer-rewards program is right for your business? Learn more and explore other business-boosting options by contacting Kurt Smith, ATA’s director of industry relations, at (717) 578-0736 or firstname.lastname@example.org.