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Starting a Loyalty Program Doesn’t Have to Be Hard, Here’s How

How to Start a Loyalty Program

Are you ready to start a loyalty program for your retail store [1] that goes beyond paper punch cards? Offering loyalty rewards to your customers can deliver plenty of rewards for your business. For instance, 39.4% of customers will spend more [2] at the businesses they’re loyal to even if cheaper options exist, and 60% will recommend that business to others.

How to Start a Loyalty Program

Here’s how to get started improving your retail sales with a customer loyalty program.

Step 1: Decide What Kinds of Rewards you Want to Offer

Rewards are limited only by your imagination. Here are some ideas:

Ideally, your loyalty program will offer the option to set a wide variety of rewards.

Step 2: Decide What Actions you Want to Reward

Some examples of behavior you can reward include:

To choose the most effective rewards, look at where your store needs to improve and tailor your rewards that way. For instance, if Sunday afternoons are always slow, offer rewards for customers who buy during that time.

Step 3: Make it Appealing to your Customers

If customers don’t think there’s value in your loyalty program, they won’t sign up. Offering a range of different rewards helps to convince customers of the value of your program and also keeps it fresh and exciting. Knowing your customers will help you assess what rewards will matter most to them and what type of loyalty program they’re likely to engage in—for example, whether they’re willing to carry another plastic card in their wallet or download a special loyalty app.

Step 4: Review your Options and Choose your App

You can search for loyalty programs for retailers online or get advice from other retailers or industry associations. Before choosing a loyalty program, get answers to these questions:

Many customers don’t like to carry loyalty cards and won’t bother to download an app. To get around those issues, try one of these super simple loyalty programs.

Step 5: Start Signing Up Customers

Once you’ve got your loyalty program up and running, promote it like crazy. Use in-store signage and point-of-sale signage to encourage signups. Announce the loyalty program on your website and your social media platforms, with a link to where to join. Send out marketing emails to your already loyal customers.



Employees are key to enrolling customers. Train your employees to promote the loyalty program during every sale. A good tactic is to share with the customer what rewards they could be getting for their purchase if they joined the program.

Once your program is up and running, check out these ideas for how to improve your loyalty program [6].

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