How to Start An Automated Loyalty Program for Your Small Business

When you are an entrepreneur owner, your business is everything to you. From waking up in the morning thinking about ways to improve your business and achieve growth, to going to sleep at night pondering about various issues, it’s all consuming. 

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Business owners work hard to create value, spending money to provide the best products, hire and train the best employees, and invest a great deal in marketing, in order to attract the right customers.

But what about keeping your customers satisfied, incentivizing them to become regulars and advocates for your brand? How do you create an exceptional customer journey, in order to get your customers to keep coming back?

The importance of loyalty programs for small businesses

Most small local business owners already understand the importance of having a loyalty program for their business. Repeated studies have shown that a 5% increase in customer loyalty results in a 25%-95% (!) increase in profits. That is due to the fact that a returning customer is 60%-70% more likely to make a purchase, and spends 31% more money than a new customer.

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As businesses continue to suffer from COVID-19 consequences, it’s crucial for you as a business owner to create incentives for your customers to revisit. Create a community behind your brand, help your customers understand the value of shopping local at these times, and get them to empathize with your brand. This also presents an opportunity for you to get closer with your customers, and let them know how valuable they are for you.

Automation means hassle-free loyalty management

So, if everyone understands the importance of a good loyalty program for their business, why is it that these programs are very common with large enterprises, but aren’t as common with small local businesses?

Loyalty programs come in many different shapes and sizes: from a members club with special discounts to punch cards and prepaid passes, most loyalty programs offer one or several features to help you retain your customers.

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However, manual tasks like stamping loyalty cards, adding points to your members, and creating special offers and discounts to your members, can become a major hassle for business owners and their employees, even if they use a digital solution to manage their loyalty program.

Many business owners believe that setting up and managing a loyalty program will be too time consuming and so they refrain from offering such a program to their customers.

With that in mind, and as technology is developing at such a rapid pace, small business owners can now overcome this obstacle, and leverage the power of automation to avoid all hassles involved in their loyalty management.

An automated loyalty platform, allows business owners to ditch the hassle, enjoy the value of having a great loyalty program to support their customers’ needs, and focus on what’s really important - taking care of their business. With an automated loyalty program, these manual and time-consuming tasks are no longer an issue, as they pretty much run themselves. And why would you punch your customers’ loyalty cards, when you can have them punched automatically, whenever your customers make a purchase?

Why is automated loyalty important for your customers?

We are now in the midst of the “COVID-19 era” for small businesses, the basic rules of the game have changed and keep on changing rapidly. Entering the “learn to live with the pandemic” stage, your clients expect you to be available for them on their terms. Meaning, on their mobile devices, whenever they need you. That is the key to understanding what automation can do for your customers loyalty and retention efforts.

Using an automated loyalty platform, you will be able to be there for your customers, provide them with a great customer experience, and transform them to be your brand champions.

Your business’ loyalty strategy will be managed easily through the following:

  • A tiered membership club, offering members rewards based on their club status
  • A full suite of all loyalty features, working simultaneously and automatically
  • A personalized in-house loyalty manager, sending the right offer to the right customer, at the right time

All of that is done automatically, through the power of AI technology, without any effort required on your end. Your customers will be able to track their membership status, points, discounts and rewards, and redeem them automatically upon making a purchase at your local business or online. You can even use geo-location based targeting, to send personalized special offers to your customers automatically, whenever they are nearby.

How can I launch an automated loyalty program?

Using automation allows you to provide a great customer experience that will help you set yourself apart from the competition, and contribute to building a community of advocates behind your business.

About the Author

Liraz Tenenboim is a Partnerships Manager for Glue, the automated loyalty platform for local businesses. He’s passionate about disruptive technology, small business marketing, and customer success strategies. Contact him on LinkedIn or at liraz@glueloyalty.com

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