Retailers misusing cards


customer, pay, POS, counter, checkout, cardShoppers most value loyalty cards that offer discounts, according to a UK retail loyalty study.

Yet they definitely don’t want their mobile phones clogged up with unnecessary marketing jingo.

Almost 95 per cent of consumers own a loyalty card in 2013, according to a study by retail research agency, Conlumino, and business analytics company, SAS.

The study, which surveyed more than 2000 consumers and 100 retailers in the UK, found shoppers commonly have three loyalty cards each.

These cards are not just idly sitting in purses, with 80 per cent of respondents having used one in the last few days.

Almost 90 per cent said they use loyalty cards “regularly” when shopping, with more than a quarter “always” redeeming points accrued.

Of the 100 retailers surveyed, 72 per cent said they offered some type of loyalty or incentive scheme to their customers.

Retailers who don’t offer cards said they prefer to generate loyalty in another way, or they experienced a poor return on investment from them.

Half of the consumers surveyed said being offered a card would make no difference to their likelihood to shop at a store or not.

The mixed results suggest that retailers offering loyalty schemes may get some benefits, but those not offering schemes mightn’t be so bad off either.

Conlumino and SAS said retailers often have the opinion that loyalty cards don’t drive sales, and are more useful for gathering customer data.

The most useful messages

When it comes to the marketing message and offers, 75 per cent of consumers said they’re most interested in vouchers.

On the spot discounts and buy one get one free incentives are also popular with shoppers.

Only 36.1 per cent of retailers said they have loyalty cards that offer discounts, with even less offering vouchers for use at a later date.

The most common benefit offered by retailers’ loyalty cards is a personalised instore offer or online shopping experience.

In comparison, only 9.2 per cent of consumers value these sorts of incentives.

The results suggest that some retailers are wasting their loyalty efforts on schemes or incentives that shoppers aren’t receptive to.

Two in five consumers said they’re willing to opt into marketing material, but a third are hesitant for fear of their private information being shared.

Junk mail is another resistance factor, with 27.4 per cent of consumers wary of unsolicited marketing material.

If retailers must send marketing material, they should definitely reconsider one medium in particular.

Only two per cent of consumers appreciate marketing material coming to them via text message.

The full report by SAS and Conlumino can be accessed online.

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