What does customer loyalty mean? Most brands would consider a return-shopper a loyal customer, but it goes beyond that. A return-shopper might be a customer of convenience. But customer loyalty is something deeper and more permanent. A customer who is loyal to you would pick your store over a statistically equal competitor. A loyal customer watches for sales, recommends your brand to friends, and perhaps even engages in your online conversations.
So your customer loyalty rewards should reflect the dynamic ways that customers show their loyalty. If you really want to return that loyalty by showing customers that you care, reward them for doing the things that loyalty inspires. When your brand has a customer loyalty points system, awarding those points in many different ways can be the key to winning real-world loyalty from your customers that goes beyond digital points-spending.
Let's take a closer look at all the many ways customers might earn loyalty points with your online store.
The easiest way to dish out loyalty points is when customers make a purchase. Of course you want to reward your customers for buying and give them a points-based incentive to shop with you again. When a customer buys, this is the clearest and most undeniable expression of their love of your brand. They come back to shop with you time and time again and without any extra effort, they earn loyalty reward points as a thank-you for their business.
Most customer reward systems dole out points when customers make a purchase, and that's where Glow gets started. But you can do so much more with loyalty points than just rewarding each purchase based on the dollar amount that customers spend.
Another great way to reward your customers is to stack on a few bonus points when customers buy items on sale. Items go on sale because you need to move inventory, so good return customers that watch for sales are working as your "clean-up crew" by eagerly buying items that you need to get out of inventory.
So reward them! Incentivize your deal-watchers by giving extra loyalty points when they buy items that are part of a sale or part of a special promotion. Not only do they get a discount on the products, they also get a special thank-you in loyalty points to spend later. Perhaps based on the original pre-mark-down price of the items.
Brands are always trying to get more from their leads and customers. Newsletter sign-ups, customer surveys, and promotional games are part of the digital marketing package, but it can be hard to get customers to jump in and participate. So for the positive-minded people who spin the digital wheel or answer the survey questions just for fun, offer them a little something extra.
Even a small handful of loyalty points is a thank-you gift to customers who choose to engage with the brand online. Those who give you valuable survey answers or play mini-games are sharing valuable data and possibly helping others get into an engaged interaction with the brand. Reward points are a great way to show your brand doesn't take their participation for granted.
When a customer has a hard time with a product, they call customer service. Perhaps their product was damaged or broken in shipping, or never arrived at their door. Modern brands often do everything they can to help the customer reach a satisfying conclusion. Brands sent replacement parts, refund purchases, and hunt down missing packages. But sometimes, customers are still flustered about having a bad time.
After a difficult customer service call, consider rewarding them a few loyalty points for the trouble. The loyalty points are wonderful in this case because you are simultaneously apologizing for any unpleasantness and thanking customers who take the time with customer service rather than just writing a bad review.
One of the most common reasons for loyalty point rewards is customer referrals. It's always fantastic when a good customer recommends your brand to a friend or relative who also becomes a good customer. When one person's account sponsors a new account, of course you want to reward the source of your new customer.
Loyalty points are a great way to truly show your appreciation for an incredible act of brand-loyalty. Your customer shows their faith in your brand by staking their own reputation on the referral. So you show your faith in the customer by giving them points to buy brand rewards with.
Does your brand have online forums or blogs with a lively comments section? If so, customer loyalty takes a whole new shape in the form of socialization. Some customers are drawn to brand forums where they can have fun, informative, or serious topical discussions about the products and uses for the products. These voices are valuable, as they create a welcoming community for new customers to join if they have questions or would like to say hello.
Consider offering loyalty points to customers who engage regularly in the forums or blog comments section. Their participation is invaluable for building online awareness and widespread customer engagement.
Finally, don't forget participation in special holiday events. Your brand might have a social media contest, game, or live event planned for a particular holiday and those customers who jump in to engage are incredibly powerful. As your event-audience grows, so too does the impact of your holiday event.
Whether it's a challenge to take advantage of your holiday sales or a special interactive event you've planned for the whole audience, participants deserve a few presents to reward their time and brand loyalty. Pass out reward points like they're candy at events and see how much participation you can really inspire.
Loyalty program reward points are an undeniably valuable to your customers and to your growing brand community. If your eCommerce brand is building a loyalty program or even just thinking about it, Glow Loyalty can help you create something that will truly inspire your customers to greater heights of brand-engagement and long-term loyalty.
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