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Customers demand mobile loyalty schemes, study says…

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Retailers are being urged to develop mobile loyalty schemes, as new research reveals that 80% of shoppers want to collect loyalty points on their phone.

A study of 1,000 people in the UK by leading mobile app developer, Apadmi, found that 8 in 10 Brits would like to start collecting loyalty points on a retail app. The research also found that 29% of shoppers would be happy to share their location with a retail app to gain incentives and loyalty points when they walk around the store.

Customer loyalty card schemes are currently a big hit with shoppers, with over half of consumers (51%) claiming they own more than one loyalty card, and 46% stating that they regularly collect and spend points on a reward card.

However, at present, only 20% of UK smart phone users interact with a retail loyalty scheme on their phone.

Despite this, Brits are interested in the benefits mobile loyalty schemes can bring as 47% of consumers said they would prefer to collect loyalty points on a mobile app, rather than a card, to free up space in their wallet. Also, 63% said they would be more likely to take their phone with them when they go shopping over a loyalty card, highlighting the convenience of mobile loyalty schemes.

The study into retail apps also found that a sizeable 71% of UK smartphone users think there is a gap in the market for more improved retail applications. And when asked what could be done to improve them, 34% said they should provide a mobile loyalty scheme.

Nick Black, CEO of Apadmi, said: “Loyalty schemes are a great way to acknowledge a customer’s loyalty by adding value to their visits and giving them a reason to return in the future. And it seems the days of retailers offering customers only traditional loyalty cards could soon be limited, as technology opens up huge opportunities for mobile apps to offer instant rewards, offers and location-based messaging in a much more engaging and interactive way.

“Interestingly, our research shows that UK shoppers are open to mobile loyalty schemes and are attracted to the benefits they could bring. Customers appreciate investment that retailers make, especially when it is rewarding and thanking them for their loyalty.

“So it’s now up to retailers to consider new ways to connect with their most loyal customers through mobile apps, and mobile loyalty schemes seem to be the way to go. However, it’s important that retailers invest properly in these reward programmes to ensure shoppers don’t switch off. If done successfully, shoppers are more likely to engage and stay loyal to the brand as they appreciate the benefits it brings.”

Apadmi’s study comes hot on the heels of a study by Juniper Research that found that more than 3 billion loyalty cards will operate as mobile-only or be integrated into mobile apps by 2020, up from 1.4 billion last year, as consumers move to app shopping and want to add their cards.

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