How to Get More Customers to Join Your Loyalty Program

customer loyalty and retention

Today’s consumer is more than just a bargain hunter. They want to feel a connection with the stores they shop at and the brands they purchase. This makes creating customer loyalty and retention a real challenge for business owners.

There are a few tools available for retailers that can develop a stronger connection with their customers. One of the best is a loyalty program. And, research has found that consumers are more likely to shop at a store with a loyalty program in place.

Consumers want to be rewarded for their loyalty, yet most of them don’t sign up for the program or quit during the onboarding process. This often happens because programs ask for too much personal information. Another reason is that it takes too long to sign up or redeem the points they earned.

3 Tips to Entice Customers

In order to avoid these pitfalls when implementing a loyalty program, retailers need to design a program that works. They need to communicate the value of their program and make the onboarding process easy. The following tips will get more customers to sign up for a loyalty program.

Tip: Design a Good Loyalty Program

The heart of a good loyalty program is the point system. These points show how loyal they are, so when they accumulate a lot of points they want to be rewarded. But, if a retailer sets their milestones too high or offer only minor rewards, then the customers will think it’s a waste of their time. Consumers want to be rewarded for their purchases, but don’t want to wait forever to get it. Retailers can also offer welcome points to entice customers to sign up and free points when they become followers on social media.

And, retailers don’t want to lose too much margin when offering discounts, because they can cut deep into profits and have a lasting effect on their cash flow. Finding the right balance takes time. A little due diligence will go a long way in making a good program attractive to their customers.

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Tip: Employee Training

Getting customers to sign up starts with employee training. Every employee should know the features and benefits of the program, how customers earn points, and how to redeem them. They should also sign up for the program, too. That way they’ll know how to help customers during the onboarding process.

Customers will have a lot of excuses why they don’t want to sign up, so employees need to know how to gently convince them. They should explain the value proposition to make a strong connection, then describe the features and benefits. This may take some practice, but will pay off in the end.

Tip: Communication

Loyalty programs often fail to take off because they aren’t properly announced to their target audience. With all of the social media platforms available, there’s really no excuse for this. And, a little bit of an investment in marketing will go a long way.

Many retailers have an extensive list of customer emails, so they can easily promote the program without spending a lot of money. They just need to make sure that they clean up their lists over time.

Direct mail is another way to promote the program. There are more cost-effective ways to send direct mail to customers than ever before. It still has a good return on the investment, but depends upon the message.

Many stores have a sandwich board announcing their specials. This is a great place to promote the loyalty program. When making signs for inside the store, good design and quality printing will appeal more to customers than something thrown together on a personal computer. Most print shops will design small signs for free, especially if they’re producing a direct mailer.

Customer Loyalty and Retention

Customer retention is the key to higher profitability. It takes less money to retain a loyal customer than acquiring a new one. Plus, loyal customers spread the word better than any form of advertising. That’s why signing them up to a loyalty program should be as much of a priority as offering the best customer service possible.

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