A loyalty program is a rewards scheme offered by a company to customers who frequently make purchases. A loyalty program may give a customer free merchandise, rewards, coupons, or even advance access to product releases. Ultimately, loyalty programs should offer incentives for shoppers to reduce store switching by offering them better value.
Did you know it costs a business around 5 to 10 times more to acquire new customers than it does to sell to existing ones? Additionally, 84% of consumers say they’re more likely to re-visit a retailer that offers a loyalty scheme.
The process of implementing a loyalty program into your business is now fully customisable and streamlined. Loyalty programs are great ways to keep customers and drive sales. Even smaller businesses can provide loyalty perks to their customers by harnessing new technology, without having to pay unreasonable costs to get your program set up and running. With modern EPoS systems like Opus Retail Manager, integrating a loyalty scheme into your business can be and should be incredibly straight forward.
Types of Loyalty Program
The different options when it comes to loyalty programs are plentiful, offering businesses lots of room for flexibility and customization to suit their specific needs. A few popular programs include:
Points – This is typically the most basic type of loyalty program. It can simply be a specific number of points earned per pound spent as you may find at a grocery store, or a “buy 5, get 1 free” program you might find at a coffee shop.
Discount Tiers – This type of program offers a variety of different incentives and rewards depending on the tier. The higher and more exclusive a tier a customer belongs to, the more they can expect to receive in return.
Paid programs – Amazon Prime and credit card companies are a couple of real-world examples of paid programs. Bonuses available for being part of a paid program can include discounts, rebates, cash back, upgrades, exclusive offers, and more.
The actions you reward in your loyalty program can be almost anything, including account registration, purchases, amount of money spent, referrals, online engagement, shopping on specific days, buying specific products, or even birthdays.
Creating Your Loyalty Program with Opus Retail Manager
The Opus Retail Manager loyalty program offers a flexible range of options for your retail business including, multiple loyalty schemes, points for customer spend, points for specific products or multibuys, loyalty discounts against customer spend levels, loyalty redemption at the point of sales and / or via vouchers, and loyalty liability reporting.
Using predefined and custom reports, you can analyse customer behaviour to help increase repeat business and customer satisfaction. Loyalty cards can be issued for customers to earn points, redeem special offers or membership discounts, and customers can even be allocated credit to encourage repeat business. Putting in the work up front will ensure your loyalty program helps your business instead of hurting it. When planning your program, in addition to selecting the type of program you want, it is also important to set goals and identify key customers. What are the rules surrounding your loyalty program or what will the reward currency be?
The key features of the Opus Retail Manager Loyalty Program are as follows:
- Multiple Loyalty Schemes can be operational. E.G. Regular Scheme, Gold Scheme, Platinum Scheme etc.
- Schemes can be Points based and / or, Customer Spend Discount based.
- Loyalty Scheme members can be allocated Scheme start and end dates.
- Groups of customers can belong to a single scheme account. E.G. The Smith Family belong to a single loyalty scheme account and all points are accumulated to a single account.
Understand your customers
Creating a pilot program with a limited audience is a great way to understand the needs of your customer base. This will provide you with the feedback you need to revise before your full-scale loyalty program goes live.
Once it does go live, all that’s left is to manage it and improve where possible. The data you collect is extremely valuable, and analysing it can help you measure results and adjust to make improvements as necessary.
Some additional tips
- Ensure you strike a balance between the program being effective for your business, but also featuring attainable goals for our customers. Understand what customers want and what incentivises them.
- Don’t forget to promote your loyalty program. Ensure employees understand how the program works and have them mention the program to customers.
- Make it easy to sign up. Whether at the checkout or online. It should be easy for customers to become a part of your program.
- Start by leveraging your existing clients – and reward generously at first. Early adopters are crucial to the success of your program.
- Open communication– emails targeted to your loyalty program members will have a significantly higher open rate and transaction rate.
Opus Retail Manager
Opus Retail Solutions specialise in providing Retail, Wholesale, & Integrated e-Commerce Solutions through its Software suite Opus Retail Manager. Opus has been developing software for over 30 years and was one of the first Windows based EPoS systems in 1997. Opus Retail Manager is hardware independent and we offer hardware depending on client requirements, policy or budget.
The key to Opus’s success lies with its ongoing investment in Research and Development and Training to keep our Software products and services and staff world class. Services range from specifying client requirements to providing custom modifications, system implementation, training with a special emphasis on after-sales support so our customers can get the most from their system. The Company invests c £100k pa in R&D to ensure it’s software remains world-class.
The entire Opus operation is managed from Opus’s Headquarters in Belfast, Northern Ireland, along with regional development and support offices in the UK and Russia. Opus has partners all over the world and currently ships the software in five languages. Please contact us if you would like to discuss a partnership.
Although our Retail Manager Software and services procedures have evolved over the years from DOS through Windows enabling us to stay ahead of the curve, our core objective is still to provide innovative, best in breed, easy to use and robust EPoS solutions, no matter what the industry, the size or the individual need.