Traditional loyalty schemes are no longer capable of meeting changing customer expectations, which have never been higher. A report published by Drapers and Retail week noted that 79% of customers are demanding an increasingly personalised shopping experience. Customers are now expecting brands to tailor individual loyalty programmes based on their shopping habits.
Traditional loyalty schemes that are solely focused on generic discounts and markdowns no longer generate truly loyal customers, only those looking for a bargain. Instead, retailers should be looking to provide a personalised service that is centred on a customer’s behaviour and expectations. Effective loyalty programs leverage a brand’s knowledge of its customers buying preferences and the type of shopping experience they expect in order to provide exceptional service.
Advances in technology have aided this process, enabling retailers to gather behavioural data and shape stores to reflect their customers’ preferences. Deploying the right technology in-store, in the warehouse and online can help to set retailers apart from competitors and generate true customer loyalty. Examples of these types of technology are:
On-demand card printing and couponing
Loyalty cards can be printed in-store and handed straight to the customer with points already loaded – no more waiting for the card to arrive in the post. These cards can then be used for more than just collecting points, customers can use them to unlock access to value-added perks and retailers can collect valuable data on their customers’ interests. In addition, a system where the store app, loyalty cards, Wi-Fi network, beacons and compact printers are all connected enables a retailer to tailor the in-store experience. Coupons can be printed on-demand with personalised offers that have been generated based on that customer’s buying habits.
Flawless fulfilment & delivery
Today, delivery is a key differentiator between retailers. There is a growing trend towards click and collect as customers seek control over delivery times. As a result, retailers need to ensure the fulfilment process is nothing short of flawless. A productive and efficient warehouse is essential and it can be achieved when the right technology is deployed. For example, the ability to print at the point of use can completely transform the receiving, picking, putaway and packaging processes. Valuable time is saved by removing the need for workers to travel to a centralised printer to collect labels and accuracy is improved as labels are printed on-demand and attached immediately.
Effective shelf management has become critical to consumer engagement, with the science behind placing items having a direct influence on customer behaviour. On demand data, combined with compact printing outputs, have enhanced the process of edge labelling. Shelf-edge printing ensures offers can be rapidly updated to reflect promotional change or merchandise availability, as well as improving stock level maintenance.
Ultimately, customer loyalty is built on personal recognition and the sense of being valued as an individual. Generic discounts aren’t enough anymore; brands must match growing customer expectations with a highly personal service. In addition, retailers must ensure they have the infrastructure required to meet high delivery demands and with new technology being released around shelf management, retailers have the ability to get it right.
Compact printers are a small but essential part of the technology solutions that make this possible. They are ideal in space-constrained areas, making them the perfect device for use in-store and in the warehouse.
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