loyalty program

5 Types of Customer Loyalty Programs


If you’re getting serious about value management and customer retention, you’ve probably considered creating a customer loyalty program that could help you hold onto your best clients and give consumers even more of a reason to pick your brand over all the rest.

Before you jump in, however, you might want to educate yourself on some of the options you’ll have when setting up your loyalty program, so that you can better narrow down what will work best for your brand and your clients. Here are some of the specific subtypes you should consider when you’re nailing down the details for your own loyalty program.

The Points Program

Perhaps one of the most well-known loyalty varieties is the points program. In this type of loyalty system, customers are able to build up “points” for every purchase that they make with you, then redeem those points in exchange for a reward once they’ve accumulated enough.

Creating a points program is great if you want something that has a low barrier to entry, presents a low-risk for new sign-ups, and getting a substantial percentage of people to opt-in. 

On the flipside, though, you’ll need to keep in mind that a points program is fairly basic, so engagement might not be all you’re expecting, and you’ll have a harder time distinguishing your program and offerings from your competitors’.

The Tiered Program

Tiered loyalty programs deviate from those bog-standard points programs insofar as they tie rewards not to points that customers must spend, but by the amount of loyalty a customer has shown to your brand. As customers “rank up” they gain access to even better rewards, and this helps higher-tier customers feel like they’re really forging a relationship with your brand.

The Subscription Program

If you have a program where customers are making regular payments in exchange for instant-rewards, then you’ve probably got yourself a subscription program. These are a great way to instantly attract those highly engaged customers and present them with clear value that goes above and beyond the rewards of most other types of loyalty programs.

The Partner Program

In a partner system, you’ll team up with another brand to introduce exclusive rewards that customers can access by doing business with either of you. A great way to co-mingle and gain access to new audiences, if you don’t mind sharing the benefits with a closely related business.

Hybrid Programs

Lastly, you could always choose to hybridize two or more types of programs together to come up with something new. This might be a great option if you see elements of different programs that would gel with your brand and customers, so always keep your eyes peeled for ways to innovate.

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