Loyalty programs are a good fit for omnichannel retailers
February 06, 2014

Small-business owners can make the most of multichannel retail strategies by heavily promoting gift card programs and loyalty programs.

The changing nature of the retail industry has created new revenue opportunities for enterprises, but it has also led to some unexpected challenges. For example, managers may find it hard to balance a brick-and-mortar presence with online and mobile-friendly stores. A lack of resources may even cause some companies to neglect one platform in favor of another. However, loyalty programs that keep customers regularly engaged are uniquely equipped to boost performance across all retail platforms.

An article in Business 2 Community reported that it costs six to seven times more money for enterprises to attract new customers than it does to simply retain existing shoppers. The website also argued that rewards initiatives have a direct impact on sales numbers for small and midsize firms. Shoppers appreciate the convenience of interacting with stores in multiple ways. An individual may browse for an item in-store, for example, but later purchase the product from the same company's online portal if he or she didn't have a credit card on hand at the time. Loyalty programs that offer unique incentives across all retail channels satisfy these customer preferences at an unprecedented level.

Information compiled by the customer service software company Zendesk found only 7 percent of consumers are satisfied with the ability of most brands to offer a high-quality omnichannel experience. Improving loyalty programs may be the best way to make up for this disparity in the near future. Small and midsize retailers typically deal with enough overhead costs every day. Streamlining the customer retention process will likely create valuable savings that simultaneously lead to more revenue over time.

Nexus: G-WEBCD2