Loyalty programs remain popular with consumers and, surprisingly, are growing in popularity with millennials and other younger consumers. Today, we’ve got a roundup of loyalty program news and highlights of who’s doing it right including Shangri-La, Target, Nordstrom, Expedia, Ahold and Togo’s Eateries.
According to eMarketer, loyalty programs will have a big influence on which big box stores consumers shop at during the 2016 holiday season. A 3radical survey shows UK consumers want more from their loyalty programs.
Research from Bond Brand Loyalty/Visa shows the average US consumer belongs to 13 loyalty programs but are only active in half of them. Loyalty program members generate 12%-18% more revenue than non-members according to a report from Accenture. Dutch/US retailer Ahold is growing its customer loyalty and basket size with personalized digital coupons reports the National Retail Federation. A research report from Urban Airship says 82% of millennials will use loyalty cards if they are available on mobile devices.
Shangri-La launched The Table by Golden Circle, a new global food and beverage loyalty program. Target introduced its new Cartwheel Perks membership rewards/loyalty program that uses the Cartwheel app which offers several hundred coupon deals easily redeemed in a single smartphone barcode at checkout. Togo’s Eateries LLC launched a unique social loyalty program that monitors and rewards customers for social media mentions and interactions. The program was developed by Chirpify and Paytronix Systems.
Since launching its redesigned loyalty program in May, Nordstrom has gained more than 1.7 million new members. Delta Airlines kicks off a new air miles rewards program with the Seattle Seahawks for the 2016 NFL season. In a first, Expedia will begin promoting Red Lion hotel’s loyalty programs alongside its own discounts rates online. Walgreens got strong response for integrating its member loyalty program into Android Pay for easy redemption and customer rewards management.
Loyalty Programs May Sway Big-Box Store Shoppers this Holiday
Holiday shopping will soon be in full swing. According to August research, more than half of US internet users feel that loyalty programs will affect whether they shop at a big-box store or not for the holidays.
US Internet Users for Whom Loyalty Programs Will Be Influential When Deciding Where to Shop During the 2016 Holiday Season, by Retailer Type (% of respondents)
Berkeley Research Group (BRG) surveyed 1,026 US internet users ages 18 and older about what influences their holiday shopping decisions.
According to the data, 55% of respondents said rewards programs will affect their decision as to what mass-market retailer to shop at this holiday season. Not too far behind were department stores (48%) and electronics retailers (43%). Meanwhile, only about one-quarter of those polled felt these types of program would be meaningful for retail categories like sporting goods and office supplies. Via emarketer.com
UK: Survey reveals Brits want more from loyalty programmes
The UK’s Retail Times has a trove of stats from a recent 3radical survey of British consumers what British marketers already know: UK consumers want more from their loyalty programs. The days of issuing points and vouchers without leveraging the resulting program data to deliver a more relevant, personalized customer experience are over. Today’s British consumer demands ever more from their loyalty program participation.
Some key stats from the 3radical survey:
– 93% of Brits have at some point signed up to be a member of a loyalty program.
– Three-quarters of respondents (75%) reported being an active member for more than 12 months.
– Despite almost a third of all UK consumers having five or more loyalty cards, almost two-thirds of those surveyed (61%) are active in only one or two programmes. Via thewisemarketer.com
To Have a Killer Loyalty Program, Retailers Need to Think Big
Loyalty programs have become an important marketing tool for retailers, and most companies entice shoppers to join these programs by offering rewards. But these incentives may not be enough to keep consumers satisfied and happy that they joined it in the first place. Retailers may need to think bigger, and more long-term.
Just because a consumer joins a company’s loyalty program doesn’t mean she’s active in it. Research from Bond Brand Loyalty, in partnership with Visa, found that the average internet user in North America belongs to about 13 loyalty programs for companies in various industries. Yet members are only actively participating in about half of the initiatives they have signed up for.
Perhaps consumers feel they aren’t getting enough out of some loyalty programs to continually participate in them, and retailers may need to change that. Some already have. Via emarketer.com
Measuring the Cost of Loyalty – Convenience Store Decisions
Members of retailers’ customer loyalty programs generate between 12-18% more revenue for retailers than do customers who are not members of the loyalty programs, according to new research from digital provider Accenture Interactive.
Those percentages were based on a survey of retailers across specialty, big-box, department, drug and convenience stores. The Accenture research sought to identify key trends and challenges of retailers’ loyalty programs.
“Today’s customer loyalty programs are an increasingly expensive, complex and expansive business that extends beyond the marketing team into the entire organization,” said Farrell Hudzik, managing director of Accenture Interactive’s Global Loyalty and Rewards practice, in a prepared statement. “Given that loyalty program members generate significant incremental revenue compared with non-members, retail loyalty program leaders must anticipate future growth trends and capture the opportunity to differentiate in an increasingly fragmented marketplace.” Via cstoredecisions.com
Ahold increases loyalty and basket size with personalized coupons
Whether it’s a coupon for half price, buy one/get one free or a simple 20 percent off, shoppers are still attracted to good deals. There was a time when retailers could distribute coupons in mass quantity to get consumers in the door and increase basket size, but now the digitization of payments and access to consumer information allows retailers to be far more targeted in their offers.
In business for more than a century, Netherlands-based Ahold serves markets in the United States and Europe. It has nearly 800 supermarkets across the United States with 121,000 associates and more than $26 billion in 2015 sales across four branded regional divisions, including Giant Carlisle and Stop & Shop New England. Ahold also operates Peapod, one of the nation’s leading online grocery shopping and delivery services.
Much like any grocer, coupons have long been a part of business for Ahold. Matt Simon, vice president of loyalty and digital marketing at Ahold USA, says there has been a progression over the years from mass coupon distribution to customization. Via nrf.com
Urban Airship: 82% of Millennials More Likely to Use Loyalty Card on Mobile Device
Urban Airship, a mobile SaaS company, recently surveyed 2,000 consumers on how their attitudes and usage of mobile wallet technology, like Apple Wallet and Google Wallet have changed. The findings point to a rapid shift in mobile consumer behavior, including:
– More than half of those surveyed (54 percent) had already used a mobile wallet pass in one form or another.
– 69 percent said they are more likely to use customer loyalty cards if they are stored on their phone.
– Mobile Wallets is in the top four ways consumers want to be kept up to date about sales. Via smallbiztrends.com
Shangri-La launches F&B loyalty program
The Hong Kong-based hotel group, which operates 98 properties and over 500 restaurants and bars worldwide, commissioned consumer research in developing The Table – surveying Golden Circle members, hotel guests and local residents on their attitudes toward dining, restaurant preferences and loyalty.
“Our consumer research reaffirmed that the emotion attached to a dining experience is far more appealing than the functional benefit of discounts and points. Loyalty programs must adapt to this trend and become increasingly more experiential,” said Shangri-La’s Chief Marketing Officer, Steven Taylor. “Through ‘The Table’s’ unmatched rewards, we are giving guests greater access to culinary experiences worth savoring. And the more they dine with us, the better these experiences get.” Via japantoday.com
Target pilots ‘Perks’ program in San Diego
Target has introduced a way for in-store shoppers to rack up points from purchases through an experimental customer loyalty program.
Called “Cartwheel Perks,” the program is now being offered to people in the San Diego, Denver, Houston and St. Louis markets. Perks rewards Target shoppers with 10 points for every dollar spent in stores and is part of the retailer’s 3-year-old Cartwheel mobile app.
Downloaded more than 27 million times, Cartwheel is a deals-centric app that offers people hundreds of digital coupons that can be redeemed with a single mobile barcode scan at the register. Via sandiegouniontribune.com
Togo’s Eateries Implements Social Loyalty Program
Chirpify, a provider of conversational conversion and social media loyalty solutions, and Paytronix Systems Inc., a provider of reward program solutions to restaurants and retailers, said they have partnered to bring social loyalty to Togo’s Eateries LLC, a restaurant chain with more than 300 locations open or under construction. The combined Chirpify-Paytronix solution provides Togo’s Eateries with new, valuable data about its social Tribe members, and it rewards Tribe members for their engagement and participation with the brand on social media.
Togo’s Eateries relies on the Paytronix reward solution to engage with its Tribe members in their channel of choice, whether that be mobile, in-store or online. With the addition of the Chirpify social media loyalty platform, the restaurant chain has extended its reach to engage with Tribe members in social media. This is an important element of any loyalty program as, according to research by Paytronix, loyalty members who are actively using Facebook and who are fans of the brand spend upwards of seventy percent more than the brand’s average program member.
Togo Tribe members that interact with the brand using a social trigger earn rewards in exchange for participating with the brand over social media. The Chirpify engine listens in the background for these social triggers, and once the triggers are set off, it can automatically and immediately reward Tribe members for their interaction. Linked to the Paytronix system through its easy-to-use API, Chirpify can recognize existing Tribe members and create accounts for new members. Via hospitalitytechnology.edgl.com
Nordstrom reaps its own rewards from redesigned rewards program
“We heard from our customers that they wanted a more personalized and flexible loyalty program,” said Chris Holloway, VP of loyalty, Nordstrom.
This feedback prompted the company to create a more inclusive program that allows customers to earn points regardless of how they choose to pay for their purchases. Enrollment is also streamlined, as customers can join simply by providing their name, mobile phone number and email address. Via chainstoreage.com
Delta Air Lines courts Seattle football fans with new perk-filled program
The ongoing rivalry between Delta Air Lines and Alaska Airlines in the Seattle market takes to the football field this season as Delta, the official airline of the Seattle Seahawks, rolls out a fan loyalty promotion that awards bonus miles and extra perks tied to the team’s performance.
Delta is calling its new program “12status,” as a nod to the very supportive Seattle fans the Seahawks consider their “12th Man,” and opening membership to any Washington State resident with a Delta SkyMiles frequent-flier account.
During the 2016 football season, 12status members will be eligible for prizes and automatically receive one mile for each passing yard at Seahawks home games and 500 bonus miles for every 12,000 people who sign up for program. Each new SkyMiles member will also get 1,200 bonus miles. Via usatoday.com
In a first, Expedia promotes a hotel’s loyalty rates and rewards program
Expedia, Inc., is the first online travel intermediary to begin displaying a hotel chain’s discounted loyalty rates next to standard rates. It’s also the first to cheerlead for a hotel’s own loyalty program.
The first chain to participate is Red Lion, a 114-property brand in the US and Canada. For the past month, the chain has been offering its cheaper loyalty rates alongside its standard rates on Expedia.com and Hotels.com.
Customers are offered the cheaper loyalty rates as long as they agree to join the hotel’s membership program. (Those who already belong to the hotel’s program can claim the rate by signing in with their credentials.) Over the course of the month, membership sign-ups more than quadrupled, says Red Lion. Via tnooz.com
Walgreens Integrates Balance Rewards Program with Android Pay
Walgreens has become the first retailer to integrate its balance rewards system with Android Pay. Walgreens Balance Rewards members can automatically apply their rewards at checkout when using Android Pay, and can earn more rewards to use for future transactions. Walgreens launched a similar program with Apple Pay last November.
Users simply enter their Balance Rewards information into their mobile wallets, and then use the mobile wallet at checkout. Once the card reader registers the Apple Pay or Android Pay account, it will apply the appropriate rewards to the purchase, and allow the user to complete the checkout.
With over 85 million active users in the Balance Rewards program, Walgreens will likely see positive results from its new Android Pay integration. Signing up is free, and new members can join online or in stores. Users earn special discounts on medications and items in the store, along with loyalty points that can reduce the price of transactions. Via lowcards.com
Loyalty programs remain popular
Loyalty programs show no signs of losing customer popularity. Smart retailers and marketers are using shopping habits, reward responses and big data to refine and introduce new, popular loyalty programs. We’ll keep you up-to-date on new programs and trends in the months ahead, so stay tuned.