With traditional loyalty programs dying a slow death, what can retailers do in order to keep their customers coming back? The appeal of programs that are too specific, that let shoppers get rewarded only at certain brand stores, has declined drastically. After all how many cards can one manage and carry. Even the airlines and hotel industries that pioneered reward miles programs are seeing a drop as people are finding it difficult to monitor such programs and find what they need.
The first and foremost point that retailers must understand is that loyalty is not a program anymore. It is a continued effort to build a deeper engagement with shoppers through timely rewards and superior experience. If you succeed at that, you might not even need a dedicated loyalty program. Loyalty development is not a one-off activity but a strategic way of thinking that retailers must incorporate in all their initiatives. Retailers should take steps to enhance customer experience at all possible touch-points as great experience directly leads to greater loyalty. The loyalty programs have to be consistent across all channels where people come in contact with your brand. For instance, enable shoppers to earn rewards while they purchase your product online and let them redeem those points anywhere, be it in-store, mobile, contact center, or online purchases.