A good loyalty programme can drive online sales.

It can cost a company between 5 to 25 times more to acquire a new customer compared to selling to an existing one. This beckons the question why so few online shops offer hassle-free loyalty programmes to grow their existing customer base.

Loyalty is all about engagement. This is where a lot of companies miss the plot. If you had to choose between spending $5 on a couple of clicks on Google, versus $5 toward a future purchase of a customer that has just bought on your site, which would you go for?

Now it’s obvious that one cannot simply have an online shop with a loyalty programme without any acquisition strategy. However, it makes more sense to have the loyalty in place when you have spent money to acquire traffic and sales, as in the long run, it could be 5 to 25 times cheaper to do so!

Some tips for creating an engaging loyalty programme:

  • Align your rewards to your average profit margin that you don’t end up with a programme that is too expensive to maintain.
  • Be relevant, if you sell expensive products, don’t give a couple of cents away.
  • Provide loyalty where there is perceived value by the customer. Don’t give away items that nobody wants anyway just you can get your hands on them for next to nothing.
  • Use aspiration engagement with a tier system to entice deeper levels of engagement with your online store. This can be supplemented with a gamification model.
  • Use a easy-to-understand points based system where customers can clearly see how to engage and they can earn.
  • Loyalty isn’t just about giving back, it’s also about acknowledgement. Do something different for your loyal customers, talk to them, feature them, thank them…make a big deal out of them.

Cassie van Wyk is the main author of this blog and has years of experience in the field of channel marketing and e-commerce respectively. He has a passion for writing and sharing knowledge, and does a lot of research in order to bring factual information to all the blog visitors. Feel free to reach out at any time!

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