Loyal customers are the most valuable, and loyalty schemes can attract and retain repeat shoppers. Research has shown that your most loyal customers are also your most profitable, they buy more, pay premium prices and refer more people to your business.


Too expensive and too frustrating?

But the barriers to implementing your own loyalty scheme have previously been enormous: the cost of the infrastructure; designing and producing loyalty cards; tracking spend; and allocating rewards. Only the very largest and most well-capitalised Kiwi businesses have had the resources and personnel to set up and run a loyalty scheme.

Even for customers, loyalty schemes can be irritating. Carrying the right card, remembering to scan it, identifying yourself somehow in the store’s systems; it can all add up to a frustrating experience at the point of sale.


Loyalty Now: no card, no friction

Now, there’s a better way. Paymark is working with Loyalty Now to bring Kiwi retailers an easier, smoother way to run a loyalty scheme. Transactions are linked directly to a customer’s credit or EFTPOS card, which means no physical card is required and every transaction is automatically counted.

“Customers only have to register a debit or credit card once, and their card is linked to participating merchants using their existing infrastructure. When there’s a matched transaction, we give the customer the reward,” explains Cary Lockwood, CEO at Loyalty Now. “Our primary focus is to remove the friction for the cardholder and the merchant because managing different types of cards and trying to identify yourself is painful. Instead, we manage the whole process, collecting and distributing rewards to members.”


Customers respond immediately

The results are rapid, says Lockwood, with most merchants seeing an immediate increase in spending once they start using the Loyalty Now software as a service. Loyalty scheme customers spend 27% more than other customers, and 87% of these also provide additional information*, which helps merchants learn more about their customer base. With a better understanding of who is shopping at your business, you can tailor your rewards to match. That might mean allowing customers to choose how they are rewarded, including with charitable donations or splitting their reward several ways.

“It’s about personalising the reward rather than ‘one size fits all’,” Lockwood says. “For program operators and merchants there’s visibility of members and customers, so they can see when consumers are coming back and at what time of day. That means merchants can know without question that this person keeps coming back and spending more, more often.”


A paradigm shift in loyalty schemes

In the past, it might have cost your business tens of thousands of dollars to participate in a loyalty scheme, because of the high cost of infrastructure, a price far too steep for most Kiwi companies. Instead, Loyalty Now’s software as a service seamlessly ties with the payment schemes into day-to-day transactions. Loyalty Now utilises the existing bank connectivity to make the connection between your customer and your business.

There is no entry fee to sign up, and as a merchant you can cap your spending on the Loyalty Now platform, so you never go over budget. Fees are success-based, so you’ll only pay if it works. This makes it possible for even small businesses to have the kind of loyalty scheme that has previously only been available to our largest retailers.

“This works for everybody, from a one-person operation and the corner store through to large retailers,” says Lockwood. “Merchants can set a budget and control the spend. It’s success-based and pay-as-you-go, with the ability to personalise rewards to match customers. This is a paradigm shift in loyalty schemes.”

Source: Loyalty Now: Card linking stats