Appstle | How retail brands can build customer loyalty online and offline

How retail brands can build customer loyalty online and offline

Appstle | How retail brands can build customer loyalty online and offline

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Want to learn how to build customer loyalty and offer meaningful customer experiences? You’ve come to the right post. 

Over the years, brands have been laser-focused on expanding their online and offline presence, so much so that the boundaries between these two worlds are becoming increasingly blurred. 

As the digital and physical worlds merge, brands should adapt and integrate the two to offer consistent customer experiences and loyalty programs. This can be achieved through various tactics, such as offering personalized rewards and promotions based on customers’ online and offline behaviors and providing a unified loyalty program that works across all channels. 

By adapting their loyalty programs accordingly, brands can drive higher customer engagement and retention in today’s hyper-connected world.

In this post, we’ll dive into understanding effective customer loyalty strategies and how you can implement them for your e-commerce brand. 

Rise of online-offline shopper

With the rise of eCommerce, customer expectations are evolving. They now anticipate a smooth and hassle-free shopping experience, regardless of whether they shop via a desktop computer, mobile device, or physical store. 90% of customers expect their communications to be consistent across all channels. 

Appstle | How retail brands can build customer loyalty online and offline

However, there is a thin line between online and offline shopping in today’s retail environment. And consumers are more eager than ever to partake in both kinds of shopping experiences, sometimes simultaneously. 

Businesses are more likely to lose consumers if their digital channels are not seamlessly synced to the physical ones. They should adapt to their customers’ physical and digital demands by investing in technologies that help bridge the gap between the two. 

By connecting the dots between buyers’ online and offline journeys, brands can understand how they behave offline vs. online, their product preferences, and engagement activities to personalize their experiences appropriately. Online channels help brands access consumer data across multiple touchpoints of the buying cycle. 

However, when this data is not unified and shared with offline stores, the customer experience dives. This leads to contrasting experiences and leaves offline shoppers with generalized experiences rather than personalized ones.

Businesses must use interconnected data from multiple touchpoints and create a single view of customers across channels to provide personalization and overcome the gap. This lets customers have a pleasant experience no matter where they are in their journey by offering excellent service with great effectiveness across the board, leading to increased customer retention. 

Appstle | How retail brands can build customer loyalty online and offline

How to bridge the online and offline gap with customer loyalty

Have you ever been frustrated with loyalty programs with disconnected reward systems, separate cards, and limited redemption options? It can be a real bummer when it feels like there are two separate programs instead of one cohesive experience. This is especially true when it comes to the disconnect between online and offline journeys.

For a business to be successful, it’s crucial to have a loyal customer base, and a loyalty program is a sure shot to make customers stick with the business and get repeat purchases. However, customers often face the challenge of managing multiple reward systems, which can be confusing and frustrating. The lack of consistency in these programs also limits their engagement, making gaining valuable insights across different channels challenging. 

Moreover, siloed data and limited redemption options create a disconnect between online and offline experiences, making customers feel like they are participating in two separate programs instead of one cohesive loyalty program. It’s time for retailers to address these issues and provide a seamless loyalty program that truly meets their customers’ needs. And that is only possible if the loyalty program is unified for offline and online purchases.

More than 90% of businesses have a loyalty program. Robust loyalty programs inspire buyers to share their data in exchange for rewards, discounts, and greater personalized experiences. This level of personalization and flexibility appeals to a diverse range of repeat customers who return frequently and tend to spend more during each visit. Incentivizing online and offline engagement provides brands with customer insights for targeted marketing. Businesses should readily adapt and reinvent their programs to meet customers’ changing expectations. 

Appstle | How retail brands can build customer loyalty online and offline

Online and in-store loyalty in action

With people increasingly turning to online shopping, it’s challenging to maintain the human touch of business-customer interaction. However, if your business has a solid loyalty program across in-store and online channels, it can enhance shoppers’ customer experience through tailored communications, personalized functions, and rewards.

Loyalty programs should empower brands to provide appealing experiences through sophisticated point-of-sale (POS) integrations and in-store and online experiences. But it’s not just about setting up a loyalty program; it’s more about building customer loyalty. The loyalty program should truly provide a rewarding experience to drive engagement and repeat purchases.

Using email, SMS, social media, and other channels to communicate consistently with customers across online and offline platforms and offering personalized messages based on their preferences and past interactions will enhance engagement. 

Appstle | How retail brands can build customer loyalty online and offline

Connecting the online and offline experience seamlessly allows customers to earn and redeem loyalty points, receive exclusive offers, and access personalized content both online and in-store. Businesses can track customer visits and behavior by implementing technology in-store, like beacons or QR codes. 

With this data, brands can personalize the in-store experience and offer relevant promotions or recommendations based on their online activity. Ensure your brand identity, messaging, and promotions are consistent across all channels. This includes visual branding, tone of voice, and promotional offers to maintain a cohesive customer experience.

Sephora’s Beauty Insider program is an excellent example of a successful in-store and online loyalty program. Shoppers earn points for online and in-store purchases, which they can redeem for rewards like beauty products or exclusive experiences. Sephora also offers personalized recommendations and special offers through its mobile app, creating a seamless shopping experience across channels.

Appstle | How retail brands can build customer loyalty online and offline

💡To learn more about running a successful loyalty program, check out our North Face Loyalty Program analysis.

Choosing an Agile Loyalty Partner

While choosing a loyalty partner, look for a flexible platform capable of adapting to your business needs and providing customizable loyalty program features, such as points-earning rules, reward options, and branding elements, to tailor the program to your specific requirements. Choose a partner that offers advanced data analytics and reporting capabilities. The ability to track customer behavior, analyze purchase patterns, and measure the effectiveness of loyalty initiatives is crucial for optimizing the program and driving business results.

Evaluate the partner’s ability to seamlessly integrate with your existing systems, such as POS systems, e-commerce platforms, CRM software, and mobile apps. A partner with robust integration capabilities can ensure a smooth implementation and enable data synchronization across channels. Mobile phones significantly influence customer engagement in today’s digital age. Ensure the loyalty partner offers a mobile-friendly solution with features like mobile app integration, mobile wallet support, and push notifications to enhance the user experience and drive engagement.

Appstle is an agile loyalty partner offering flexible solutions, seamless integration, and reliable customer support. With Appstle, you can build a steady customer base with an innovative and highly engaging loyalty program. You can choose from multiple program types to maximize store engagement and revenue, gamify rewarding and redeeming to build and maintain interest, and seamlessly integrate across points of sale and social media platforms for a true omnichannel experience. It is a complete loyalty solution built to grow your revenue, brand loyalty, and CLTV.

Wrapping up

Loyalty is a two-way street. Embracing a unified loyalty program can help your business break down data silos, create a seamless omnichannel experience, and foster meaningful customer relationships.

Implementing an omnichannel loyalty program that integrates all touchpoints and channels, offers personalized experiences, and provides relevant rewards can boost customer loyalty, retention rates, and sales. When you embrace an omnichannel approach, you show your customers that you care about their evolving expectations and preferences. This leads to more satisfied customers who are likelier to stick around and spread the word about your business. 
If you want to enhance your customer loyalty programs and build an ever-growing customer base, your search ends with Appstle. Get started today and discover how you can maximize profits and store engagement.

About the author

Appstle | How retail brands can build customer loyalty online and offline

Vanhishikha Bhargava

Vanhishikha Bhargava is the Content Marketer for Appstle Solutions. You’ll always find her creating content or reading up on the industry with a cup of coffee in hand, which makes her anxious at times! But stay tuned for insightful pieces. Always.

If you are looking to understand more about Appstle Inc’s products and solutions, you can get in touch with us. Our 24x7x365 available experts will be happy to assist you further.

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