With rising consumer expectations, retailers need to do more than ever to not only capture the attention of potential customers, but also retain them as loyal customers.

Retailers can increase customer retention through loyalty programs that remove friction and inconvenience for shoppers, according to Loyalty Now.

“The value of an engaged customer cannot be overlooked. Customers committed to a business are more likely to continue purchasing from that business and support organisational pivots or new ideas. Their loyalty is earned by putting their experience at the heart of everything the retailer does,” Loyalty Now CEO, Cary Lockwood said.

“One way retailers can improve customer retention is through a loyalty and rewards program. The more benefits that these programs provide, the more likely a consumer will be to stay loyal to an organisation.”

There are several ways that investing in a seamless loyalty program can improve customer retention.

  1. Immediate and long-term benefits

Having visible benefits to a loyalty program is key to garnering high levels of consumer interaction. These benefits must be obtainable and desirable by the customer and provide real value to their experience. When employing a card-linked, frictionless loyalty platform, consumers can benefit immediately from the convenience, saving them from carrying one more card in their wallet or from having to enter loyalty details at the point of sale. These benefits continue to compound as additional promotions and deals are offered through the corresponding online portal, keeping the consumer engaged.

2. Personalised service

Digitised rewards programs also let retailers curate the purchase process for individual customers, providing a hyper-personalised experience. From specific offers that correlate to peak shopping times, to records of previous transactions for future reference, card-linked rewards programs let the consumer be seen as the number one priority and keep them coming back.

3. Data collected informs future promotions

Data informs organisational growth and potential profits. When retailers can access consumer data, the insights let them create future promotions and sales that will resonate directly with current customers. This inside knowledge is critical in avoiding investing resources in projects that will not pique the interest of the current customer base.

4. Appeals to both passive and active customers

A frictionless system means that retailers can include both the active and passive shopper in their growth projections. Card-linked loyalty and rewards programs simply require the customer to pay for their purchases using their linked card. This removes physical barriers from the checkout process, such as having to produce a loyalty card, scan a code, or enter the customer’s details.