Consumers looking for more from loyalty schemes - report

23rd Nov 2011

Just under half of the public would prefer to receive offers from loyalty schemes while shopping, with a similar proportion keen to use a credit or debit card as a loyalty card.

A national consumer survey asking what customers want from loyalty schemes of the future, commissioned by customer interactions specialist The Logic Group, also found that older consumers are more resistant to the introduction of new technology channels.
The survey of 2,000 adults conducted by Ipsos MORI found that younger consumers are twice as likely as their older counterparts to want to receive loyalty scheme offers via new technology channels. A third of consumers aged 15-24 and 29% of 25-34 year olds agreed in contrast to 14% of their older counterparts.  For older respondents the key reservations were physical barriers (feeling they may be penalised for having out of date devices), knowledge barriers and fear of the unknown, data security and being tracked. 
When asked about interacting with new technology channels only a fifth of the British public said that they liked to receive loyalty scheme offers via mobile and social networks, and double that proportion said they did not (40%).
Antony Jones, CEO of The Logic Group, said: “When it comes to developing loyalty schemes that involve new technologies, it really is imperative to consider your target customers, and those businesses offering products or services used by older consumers should perhaps be more careful about the introduction of new technology channels as part of day-to-day scheme interactions.” 
Jones added that clear interest among respondents in schemes requiring only one card or device pointed towards future technologies to create links between accounts and scheme rewards, mobile apps, NFC and contactless technology.
There were mixed reactions to Social media. While some respondents already used social media and were happy with how it worked, some voiced concerns about data security.  They liked being able to sign up to a company and receive offers of relevance to them, however data sharing and security issues were an overarching fear for all. 
And while respondents showed some interest in the concept of the mobile wallet driven by convenience and speed of transactions, the study highlighted concerns about possible fraudulent use, inconvenience if lost, and being a greater target for theft. There was also some negativity towards the suggested £15 transaction limit, with suggestions that this could be increased by adding a pin to the transaction to make it more secure. 
Simon Atkinson, assistant chief executive at Ipsos MORI said: “There is undoubtedly consumer appetite for using new technologies when the benefits are made clear; though uncertainty about the actual user experience still remains. Importantly, new technology could make interacting with a scheme more convenient and make offers and information more easily accessible.  For consumers who are worried about embracing technology changes, and the older generation in particular, the answer is likely to lie in offering existing services in tandem with new.”

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