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The Covid-19 pandemic tanked the whole economy, closed stores due to bad business, and disrupted the market channels. All of this pushed a lot of people to turn to online bazaars. And the brands are finding it quite difficult to earn their customers’ loyalty due to the quick changes in customer expectation and behavior. 2021, am I right?

Loyalty programs offer immediate deals, benefits, and premium experiences in exchange for a fee. Customers are always searching for exclusive and fair deals from these loyalty programs to enhance their experience. The companies focus on building trust and engaging the customers through rewards.

These programs incentivise its prevailing customers. They encourage them to maintain a long-lasting relationship. Loyalty programs are a cost-efficient way to retain clientele compared to the whole process of attracting and converting customers.

People went around exploring different brands during the pandemic. Since they targeted their shift towards going completely digital now, the consumers have had a chance to break their traditional shopping habits and chose to shop from alternatives.

This made it very difficult for their regular brands to retain their audience. But, the consumers demand something different now. And the traditional loyalty programs do not suffice to their expectations anymore.

The rise of the “instant” culture has brought the desire of receiving immediate and quick benefits. Hence, the “pay now, rewards later” loyalty programs took a hit due to delays and irrelevant deals. People want offers like free shipping, express delivery, instant discounts. Loyalty programs that take this approach are luring many customers to join or renew their memberships.

Although, traditional loyalty programs still have some advantages. They are a great source to collect first-hand information from the customers. The data proves helpful in analysing and improvising on the current marketing as well as advertising strategies and current loyalty programs. They provide a gateway into the brand’s ecosystem.

Providing your regular and best customers with the option of joining premium loyalty programs will go a long way. Maximum loyalty members have claimed to be interested in joining the premium tier of these programs (of their choice of brands). They want to experience the best deals and benefits the company has to offer.

Loyalty programs aim to escalate engagement and increase the frequency of purchasing. Apart from these, they also cultivate your brand’s loyalty as a whole. These programs are beneficial in incentivising the customers. They keep coming back to your brand online or offline and purchasing your products. Thus, ensuring a steady stream of revenue.

Rewarding current customers can get word of mouth going, which might help the brand attract new customers and increase traffic online and offline. This becomes a chain, and you can expand your customer base and profits.
Ensuring that the customers were still loyal to the brands was arduous, especially during the pandemic.

A study found out that around 49% of shoppers tried to switch brands online as it was easier. But the loyalty program members stuck to their brands and shopped from the ones whose loyalty programs they were a part of.

With the frequent and drastic change in consumer behavior and the market slowly opening up and gaining pace, giving a premium membership offer in the loyalty programs couldn’t hurt. It would meet the increasing expectations and provide the customers with the ability to choose.

With the companies taking the game to the next level, it’ll be quite a spectacle to see what they have to offer!