Many small businesses are built on repeat customers — and loyalty programs can help ensure those same customers keep coming through the doors rather than gracing the aisles of the competition. But there’s more to creating a rewards program than just creating punch cards or signing up for a digital service. Here are five loyalty program tips to consider as a small business owner.
Keep loyalty programs simple and fast.
Have you ever skipped signing up for a rewards program because you were just hoping to check out and get home as quickly as possible? Rewards programs tend to get more traction when kept simple, both in the sign up process and while gathering and counting rewards. Start by keeping the sign up simple, requiring only a few basic pieces of information so sign up is done in a minute or two. Be sure to make using the rewards program easy too — the best rewards programs are ones that customers can figure out without using a calculator.
Ensure you are offering value.
Don’t create a reward program that will simply send out stuff to fill your customer’s junk drawers. Ensure the rewards hold value for customers. There are a few different ways to approach this — you can conduct a survey and find out what customers really want. Or, you can offer discounts on the things that your customers are already buying. A print shop, for example, could offer a free print for every ten prints, or a discount after spending a certain amount of money.
Don’t stop at just using the loyalty program to drive repeat customers.
If you solely use the loyalty program to drive repeat business, you aren’t getting all of the benefits from the program. Digital rewards programs can help track customer data to improve your store, send out coupons when a customer hasn’t visited in some time, and more. By looking at which customers are buying what, you’ll have more data to drive decisions to move your business forward.
Encourage social sharing.
An easy way to boost your rewards program? Offer extra points for users that share the program on social media. You’ll generate a social media buzz, while customers can earn more points. By encouraging shares, you’ll find more new customers as well as more customers signing up for the loyalty program.
Keep listening to loyal customers, even after the loyalty program launches.
Surveys and customer feedback are a great way to design a new loyalty program — but don’t ignore feedback after the launch either. Continue to ask for feedback, both on the program and customer service in general, and integrate customer feedback into your business. When you ask and respond, you build a better relationship with loyal customers and offer a better experience for new customers.
Loyalty programs help encourage customers to continue to frequent your business — and maybe even buy more while inside too. From keeping rewards simple to listening to customers, when done right, a loyalty program can be a big boost for business.