Loyalty programs are a great way to increase customer retention.
Customers love effortless and personalized experiences - and mobile apps can help you achieve exactly that.
Mobile apps enable your brand to communicate directly with your customers and gather relevant data about their buying behavior, which in turn helps build a powerful database and optimize marketing efforts.
As a software house, we’ve had the chance to transform a few loyalty programs and increase customer retention for our clients.
Here’s how to take full advantage of mobile apps as a tool for brand loyalty.
The Benefits of Customer Loyalty
Customers engage in loyalty programs only if they don’t require a lot of time and effort, and they expect seamless and simple schemes with instant rewards. Only well-developed, dedicated mobile apps can make that possible.
That being said, if your business can manage to get customers to sign up for your loyalty program, you can benefit greatly.
- More than 80% of US customers are more loyal to brands when they participate in dedicated rewards programs.
- More than 70% of shoppers are more likely to participate in a loyalty program if they can easily access loyalty cards and rewards from their mobile phone.
Mobile apps also gather relevant data and build relationships with customers.
The aim of any loyalty program is to offer a personalized experience and tighten customers’ relationship without flooding them with information they don't care about.
Companies that track consumer behavior – previous purchases, product attributes, and purchase context – can create highly customized and targeted offers.
How to Boost Customer Loyalty With a Mobile App
There's no point in developing a loyalty program that is difficult to join and to participate in. Certain features and functionalities of mobile apps can change the way you motivate your customers to stay loyal:
- Instant rewards: Rewarding your customer every time they choose your brand over another is a great incentive for them to stay loyal. Mobile apps make it easier to collect points and exchange them for rewards using a singular platform that users can easily access.
- Product recommendations and timely promotions: Study your customers’ interactions on your mobile app to determine their buying preferences and behavior. You can use this data to offer relevant products at the most convenient time, increase conversions, and boost brand loyalty.
- Messaging and push notifications: Engage with your users and encourage feedback. Messaging also provides reliable information about your brand and keep your customers updated.
- Shared experiences: Encourage users to share their accomplishments and rewards using social media buttons or referral codes to spread awareness about their positive experiences on your app.
Examples of the Best Mobile App Loyalty Programs
Some brands recognize the potential of mobile loyalty programs and have developed their own ways to boost brand loyalty through a mobile app.
The following case studies demonstrate the benefits of a customer loyalty app for a company:
Starbucks has the most-used mobile app among major restaurant chains. One reason it is so popular is its engaging loyalty program.
Its app allows users to:
- Pay by phone
- Enjoy in-store refills
- Take advantage of customized offers
- Collect points for every dollar spent, which can be exchanged for food and drinks
The app also keeps customers informed and engaged without displaying irrelevant content. It’s straightforward and intuitive, providing only the newest offers and personalized discounts.
Sephora constantly adopts new technologies to boost both brand awareness and customer loyalty.
It was one of the first companies to join Snapchat, launch Apple Pay, and apply chatbots.
Sephora's mobile app allows customers to:
- Discover new products
- Customize a virtual makeover
- Add “tested” products to their wishlist
- Browse relevant content about makeup and cosmetics
All of its content is highly personalized, including location-targeted promotions, daily updates, emails, and push messages.
As a result, Sephora optimized its user shopping experience, which helped to increase its conversion rates and influenced customer retention.
The loyalty program of Olimp Labs, a major Polish pharmaceutical company, significantly transformed when it launched a dedicated mobile app.
Instead of saving physical coupons from every product, customers can use the app to scan the unique 2D codes for each package they receive, collect points, and exchange them for the chosen rewards.
As a result, Olimp Labs became independent from retailers, and the app allows the company to communicate directly with its loyal customers and track and analyze customer behavior in real time.
Within a matter of months, the app was 20,000 loyal customers used the app and boosted the company's retention.
Mobile Apps Can Transform Your Loyalty Program
Mobile apps are great tools to engage customers and keep them loyal to your brand.
If you can create an appealing and easy-to-use app, you can take your loyalty program to the next level.
Berenika Teter is a content marketing specialist at KISS digital, a software house that provides winning technological and communication solutions for both emerging startups and large enterprises.