Most small retailers don’t have big marketing budgets but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t find ways to thank regular customers for their loyalty, according to Dave Strutton, owner of Howards Storage World Mile End in Adelaide.

“Every year I give away vouchers and freebies to frequent shoppers through in-store, email and Facebook and Instagram promotions,” Strutton said.

He believes that someone who regularly spends money in the store and follows his business on social media should be given something back as a token of appreciation.

“Giving a customer a voucher or small gift on their birthday or the chance to win a prize on social media can go a long way to recognising them for their loyalty,” he said.

Strutton has shared five ways he rewards his own customers:

Membership program – members get sign-up and yearly birthday vouchers and each time they spend a certain amount of money. They also get exclusive discounts and offers.

Social media competitions – followers are given the chance to win popular products and vouchers through competition at certain times of the year, such as Mother’s Day and Christmas.

Workshops and demonstrations – free how-to sessions in store with industry experts and influencers who share their product knowledge.

Events – VIP shopping event attracts hundreds of customers. They get special access to the store, discounts, food and drink, goodie bags and door prizes.

One off bonus –birthdays and major milestones, such as a recent renovation is celebrated through giveaways and sales.

“I believe the key to a good customer loyalty program is simplicity. Ours is free to join and easy to use and we don’t ask customers to a carry a special card in their wallets or accumulate tens of thousands of points,” he said.

“Statistics show that members spend more frequently and spend more money than other customers and are more likely to tell their friends and family too.”