Loyalty Programs that Lead to Brand Loyalty

Loyalty programs benefit customers and businesses alike, taking customer service to another, more personalized level and strengthening your relationships.


May 6, 2024


Insights, Global

For some, shopping is a sport. Getting the best deals, finding all the sales, and hitting up all the stores that give you the best bang for your buck is a skill you don’t learn overnight. Shopping can be an art, and getting really good at it takes practice. Frequent shoppers know this. However, to take advantage of the benefits of loyalty programs, you don’t have to be a frequent shopper; you can loathe shopping and still reap the rewards of loyalty programs. It’s as if the playing field for all shoppers has been leveled, and everyone gets to save time and money while getting the best deals. And that’s what it’s about—saving money and time while getting the items you need or treating yourself with a few items you want. That’s why loyalty programs are a win-win for both the customer and the brand. It’s as if brand loyalty wasn’t already a coveted thing. With loyalty programs, brands are taking customer service to another, more personalized level — and the only catch is that it’s working.  

The loyalty programs industry is booming in the United Kingdom, with sales projected to reach $9.02 billion by 2024 and a staggering $12.67 billion by 2028. A bargain hunter’s motto is, “You’ve got to spend to save,” and loyalty programs are a great way to achieve that. Let’s face it, whether shopping is your favorite pastime or not, with the rising cost-of-living, shoppers can offset their living expenses by becoming a member of a loyalty program and save in the process. In fact, more than 70% of UK shoppers are already members of at least one loyalty program, and this percentage has increased by 55% due to escalating living costs. 

Many UK shoppers use loyalty programs because they offer various discounts, and the qualification process is simple and quick. Anyone can enroll, and it only requires minimal personal information to sign up. Shoppers can register in-store, via the store’s app on their phones, or online. As a matter of fact, 64% of UK shoppers prefer to engage with a brand via their smartphone to participate in their loyalty program. While accessing these programs is easy, the real value comes from the connection built between shoppers and shops. This connection leads to brand loyalty, and here are the ways it’s built. 


1. Loyalty Programs Offer Personalized and Exclusive Perks 

Everyone feels connected to another person when they remember their name. It’s a fact. So, when brands personalize the offers to their customers, it builds a connection that is hard to deny. Other ways a company may bolster its connection is to receive a perk for your birthday or the anniversary of becoming a loyal member, granting you free shipping, or offering early access to sales or new products — this all matters to shoppers. So much so that 84% of UK shoppers say that loyalty programs indeed influence how much they will buy from a brand again in the future.  


2. Loyalty Programs are Fun 

Earning points feels like you’re playing a game. It’s fun, engaging, and feels good. It’s like you’re competing to win; when you do, you feel good about yourself. It’s hard to have shopper’s remorse when you’re saving and earning more points in the process. When brands make saving fun, the more shoppers will spend and will do so gladly and repeatedly.  


3. Loyalty Programs Provide a Sense of Belonging 

Perks tailored to your preferences that are unique to you, as well as engaging activities, can create a feeling of belonging. It is a natural human need to feel like we are part of something, and what if that “something” was your brand? Loyalty and community go hand in hand. By fostering a strong sense of community, we can create a feeling of belonging, ultimately leading to loyalty. 

Loyalty programs can be compared to a social society or club. They allow shoppers to feel connected, valued, and seen by their chosen brands. The mutual visibility between the brand and the customer makes loyalty programs effective. Brands can see their customers’ shopping habits and cater to them through personalized communication and exclusive deals, while customers feel seen and appreciated. This mutual relationship makes loyalty programs a compelling reason for customers to stay loyal to the brand and for brands to retain their customers. 


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