Modern day point of sale (POS) transactions take too long. Long gone are the days where you can walk into a store, pay for a candy bar, and leave – all while the same songs plays through your car stereo.
What used to be a quick and efficient customer interaction has been flooded with employees who are forced to plug swipe cards, apps, and other lackluster campaigns in an effort to retain your business.
“Are you a member of our rewards program?”
“Would you like to be?”
The push for loyalty cards and points programs slow things down, hurting sales in the process. It drives me crazy when I have to log in with a password to buy a slurpy.
Loyalty is still rooted in “the basics”
POS transactions that include a loyalty program are well-intentioned. When done right, retailers can use them to increase customer spending and referrals, but some seem to have abandoned the most basic – and effective – loyalty and retention strategies along the way.
Forget that our time is always of the essence, company’s attempts to incentivize their base at every opportunity is slowing me down, making me frustrated and questioning my loyalty.
Be more than a number
Effective leaders should think of ways to balance customer retention strategies with an inspired culture of service to help foster long term loyalty. This includes forgoing half-hearted consumer programs that are not rooted in or encourage basic service principles.
The Walk Disney Company is a great example of a company who has mastered the art of customer loyalty. They understand that traditional service strategies are still at the heartbeat of every meaningful interaction and memorable customer experience. Guests return again and again not because of their benefit programs (though they are top-notch) but because every interaction with a team member is RELEVANT, PERSONAL, and EFFICIENT.
Employees should focus on genuine and engaging interactions rather than pushing loyalty programs that waste time to retain customers. Customers who feel a connection with your people will trump any loyalty program any day. For example:
1. Let your frequent customers know that you’re grateful for their business. “Hi, Tim! I was so happy to see your name appear on our roster this morning. It’s great to see you again.”
2. Educate and connect with customers at every opportunity. “You ordered my favorite coffee drink, too. Have you tried the new XXX? I think you’d enjoy it!”
Simple additions like these let customers know they are more than just a number, that they’re not just data analyzed by your marketing team. Better yet, they don’t take up valuable time.
If your point of sale transactions could use a revamp, try a few of these loyalty strategies rooted in responsible and engaged service to help SPARK customer loyalty.
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