customer loyalty for small businesses

We all remember growing up listening to our parents talking about their shopping experiences. I remember how important brand loyalty was when it came to the products that they bought. In my youth, you build customer loyalty with quality service and a consistent positive experience from their products, services or their location. However, our time is a little bit different. Customer loyalty is built on rewarding your customers for continuing to shop with you. Trying to implement a system like this yourself can seem like a monumental undertaking. As a small business with a limited budget, how can you focus on customer loyalty and retention?

Customer Loyalty & Retention

The truth is, you need a system in place to manage everything that goes into building customer loyalty and retaining those customers over time. One system that is in place, that has gained over 100,000 users is a system called flok. flok is a customer loyalty app, which enables you to put a system in place for your small business. You can set up your own reward system to retain customers for a longer period of time and keep them coming back.

How do you do this? flok enables you to give your customers a virtual punch card that keeps track of every time they make a purchase from you. Systems like this are used by larger businesses all the time. For example a large pizza chain that I order from rewards you with a free pizza after you place so many orders with them.   However, fok places its loyalty card app in the hands of small businesses, making it easy to implement in many different types of business settings.

flok doesn’t stop there. The app also enables you to send notifications to your members, helping you to keep in touch with them, while cutting down on advertising costs. This is a great way to stay in contact with them directly. You can also integrate social media with flok, making the entire experience engaging. If customers have any questions or concerns, you can also integrate chat in order to connect directly with them and resolve any issues quickly and effectively.

Benefits of the App

The reason this works so well for small businesses, is that it keeps customers coming into the store over and over again. Much like websites and gamification, consumers love receiving incentives for their efforts. They feel like they’re getting more for their money. Speaking from experience, I like to feel like I am getting something for shopping exclusively at a certain location. Implementing this and small businesses can help drive consistent revenue to your doorstep for doing what you’re already doing, which is providing quality products and services.

You’re also minimizing your costs for retaining customers long-term. Instead of offering a deal such as 50% off, or buy one get one free, you’re offering something for free in exchange for numerous purchases. If it takes 10 purchases for someone to get a free item, it is essentially like giving them a 10% discount on every purchase.

customer loyalty rewards

Physical loyalty cards are dying out. No one likes carrying all of those cards around. I know that I have around 5-7 on my keychain now. One thing that consumers usually have with them at all times is their cell phone. Integrating a system that is simply an app on their phone means that they’ll never need to carry around anything extra. Also, it means that they’ll never miss out on punching their card, because they left it at home. For small businesses, this increases the likelihood that their customers will actually use it!

Applications are Endless

The business applications of flok are limitless. Here are a few examples. If you are a restaurant, you can reward your customers with a free meal after so many visits. If you are a nail salon or a spa, you can reward customers in different ways. You can reward them for their number of visits, or you could also reward them up for reoccurring purchases on certain packages. If you are a car wash or a dry cleaner, you could set up a reward so that every 10th visit is free. This would also work for industries such as movie theaters or attractions, too.

You’re in Complete Control

You don’t have to try to wedge your business into a rigid system. You simply set up the number of punches required for a reward, and what your customers will receive for that reward. You can also send them notifications of offers, which increases the likelihood of their response. This is great for reaching out to customers that haven’t purchased in a while. It’s a great way to get them back in for a visit.

You’ll also build brand recognition along with brand loyalty, because you have control over the look of your app. Choose brand colors, upload your logo and a cover photo.

virtual data and analytics

Everything is Virtual

With flok, you have the advantage of having everything tracked digitally. This means you’ll always know how many members you have and who is taking advantage of your rewards system. Also, you can track punches virtually, so no one can take advantage of you or your rewards system to gain unearned rewards. This all gives you peace of mind knowing that everything is secure, tracked, and all managed within a simple, streamlined app.

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I am a professional graphic designer and web designer with years of experience. I am also an illustrator and Wordpress theme creator and author of this design blog. I write tutorials and build custom websites. I do what I love, and I love what I do! You can: Follow Me on Twitter, Join Me on Facebook, & Or Follow James George on Google+

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