Loyalty programs have proven themselves as one of the most effective marketing strategies, for increasing revenue and inspiring customer loyalty. This has prompted 90% of the companies to offer some form of a loyalty program. Today, brands need to ensure their loyalty program stands out amongst their competitors’ programs. . A whopping 54% of the people will not continue in a loyalty program if it is not engaging enough. With an ever-shrinking attention span, brands need to innovate to engage their customers, creating a value proposition that goes beyond points and rewards. There are companies that have managed to push the boundaries of creativity to engage customers. In this blog, we cover the 5 best loyalty programs in the home improvement segment.
K Club Rewards – Kirkland’s:
Kirkland’s was founded with a single belief in mind: great style can come at a great price. Kirkland believes in providing customers with everything they need to create inspirational living spaces to live inspirational lives. Kirkland’s loyalty program, K Club Rewards was ranked as America’s Best Home Goods Loyalty Program for 2021 by Newsweek magazine.
K Club Rewards primarily focuses on customer engagement. To engage all customers, Kirkland’s organizes a monthly sweepstake. One lucky winner stands to win a $500 gift card for Kirkland’s. A purchase or product review makes a customer eligible for the sweepstake. This strategy has multiple benefits – not only does this help Kirkland’s increase their product reviews, but also creates a hook for the winner to purchase again when they redeem the gift card. The aspirational aspect of the sweepstake drives up customer engagement as well. The next focus point for Kirkland’s is to ensure customers are emotionally attached to K Club Rewards. To increase emotional loyalty, Kirkland’s surprises members on their birthday and provides special offers like double point days, exclusive access, and bonuses throughout the year. Furthermore, members in possession of Kirkland’s credit card can earn 2X points on purchases. All these benefits create high engagement with customers which converts to customer loyalty for Kirkland’s.
Middleby Residential – Middleby VIP Program:
Middleby Residential is a subsidy of Middleby Corporation which is an American publicly traded company. Middleby Residential is the leader in the ultra-premium, residential kitchen appliance market. The commercial cooking equipment side of Middleby does business with 97 out of the top 100 food service chains in the United States and internationally.
Middleby has created a loyalty program that is perfectly balanced in terms of points earning activities and rewards. Members earn points through activities like creating an account and completing their profile. These simple point earning activities gets more customers to sign up. Once customers sign up, Middleby VIP program focuses on social loyalty. The world lives on social media, and it is the best place to engage customers. Middleby engages members online by encouraging them to share the brand’s Facebook page and posts. Members can upload photos of their finished design to earn more points. Such activities ensure members get enough points to reach the rewards they aspire for. Through their tiered program, Middleby ensures they prioritize their customers and pamper them. The added benefits of higher tiers are aspirational for members, and this influences them to stay engaged with the program. Like any loyalty program, Middleby awards points for purchases but the cool part is that these purchases could be through a 3rd party store too. By simply uploading the receipt to their account, members are awarded the necessary points.
Insider Perks – At Home:
At Home specializes in home decor products and is a company built around the importance of ‘home’. They are passionate about helping families build affordable housing. In 2018, At Home joined “Home is the Key” campaign that helps people become self-reliant through homeownership. Sustainability is also quite important to At Home. They have a strategy in place to minimize their energy usage and overall carbon footprint.
At Home uses its rewards program to provide exclusivity for its members. At Home has added a VIP tier for their top customers. These VIP members get priority customer care among, other perks; this goes a long way in instilling emotional loyalty. Members are informed of new product launches and are provided with special pricing for deals. Cost savings aside, members feel special when they receive such perks. To increase the value proposition, members are provided with tips for re-decorating their homes. From the customers’ perspective, such perks have a high perceived value attached to it.
Beyond+ – Bed Bath & Beyond:
Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. is an American chain of domestic merchandise retail stores. Bed Bath & Beyond was founded in 1971 and they operate many stores in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Bed Bath & Beyond is counted among the Fortune 500 and the Forbes Global 2000.
Beyond+ is a subscription rewards program. For a mere $29 annual fee, members get a 20% discount on all their purchases along with free delivery. This is a beneficial program for customers as the amount they have invested in the subscription model is retrieved many times over! Such transactional loyalty ensures a top of the mind recall for future purchases. Members will stay invested with Beyond+ and are unlikely to buy from a competitor. Beyond+ has also excelled in establishing engagement loyalty. Members who opt for email communication get an additional discount for a single purchase. The emails inform members about new products, promotions, etc. This additional communication channel helps Bed Bath & Beyond increase the ROI of their marketing campaigns, and engage more with the customers.
Ace Rewards – Ace Hardware:
Ace Hardware was founded in 1924 by a small group of Chicago hardware store owners. They made it possible for individual stores to purchase merchandise in bulk and this changed the retail landscape. This initiative enabled the smaller stores to compete effectively with the larger stores. Today, Ace Hardware has over 5,000 stores around the world.
Ace Rewards is a two-tiered loyalty program and is unique in terms of its loyalty app. Members become eligible for exclusive in-app benefits after linking their account with the app. The app provides members exclusive app-only offers and more points earning activities. Premier tier members become eligible for extra benefits like a 10% discount or 3X loyalty points on a purchase of the members’ choice. With an additional platform to engage customers, Ace Hardware is ‘acing’ their loyalty rewards strategy.
Over the last decade, loyalty rewards programs have proven they are an effective way to drive customer retention, boost customer lifetime value, and inspire loyalty. But simply implementing a rewards program is not enough. It is important to understand the needs and motivations that drive customer purchase decisions. Armed with this knowledge, brands must innovate to create value for end customers. 66% of customers say the ability to earn rewards changes their spending behavior, and each of the loyalty programs showcased above create activities to enable the members to earn rewards. In addition, these programs engage with their customers in their own unique way. These activities and features develop different types of loyalty among customers. Such a step-by-step approach has helped these 5 brands create value for themselves and the customers they serve.