Americans say loyalty and rewards programs miss the mark with membership benefits, and aren't driving loyalty
ACI Worldwide, a leading international provider of payment systems, recently released the results of a recent study of consumers in the U.S., which shows that many retail loyalty programs leave consumers feeling underappreciated and many consumers are enrolled in a program they don't completely understand.
Although three out of four Americans are members of at least one retail loyalty card program, 85 percent of members report that they haven't heard a single word from a loyalty program since the day they signed up. Likewise, 81 percent say they don't even know the benefits of the program or how/when they will receive rewards.
"Loyalty programs have long been a logical way to leverage consumer satisfaction, but retailers are missing the mark when it comes to reaching out to consumers with information and offers that are relevant to them," said Rob Seward, senior industry marketing manager at ACI Worldwide. "The end result is that memberships are becoming meaningless."
While loyalty programs are designed to build devotion, they sometimes send mixed messages. Whether it was a reward they didn't want (27 percent) or a reward that was too small to take seriously (22 percent), more than two in five consumers have had a negative experience from a loyalty program.
The survey also shows that the majority of American consumers (62 percent) join retail loyalty programs so they can get discounts on the things they buy most. However, only about one third of Americans (36 percent) received a reward or promotion that made them come back to the store again and one in four consumers complain they have received a reward or promotion for something they would never buy. Conversely, only a mere 27 percent of Americans have received a loyalty program reward or promotion that made them feel valued as a customer.
"With this consumer dissatisfaction of program benefits, we've made sure our ACI Retail Commerce Server for Rewards Management offers programs that can be easily marketed to consumers' specific purchasing history. Offers can be delivered to the recipient prior to or during their purchase event, which maximizes exposure to the loyalty program when it matters most," Seward said.
"Successful retailers place the customer experience at the center of their loyalty and rewards strategy. ACI is making it easy for retailers to integrate their loyalty and rewards programs so they can do what the programs were intended – create greater consumer loyalty," he continued.
This survey was conducted in by Wakefield Research (www.WakefieldResearch.com). For this research, 1,053 interviews were fielded among nationally representative Americans aged 18 and older, using an email invitation and an online survey. Quotas were set to ensure reliable and accurate representation of the total U.S. population ages 18 and older.
To find out more about ACI Retail Commerce Server, please visit www.aciworldwide.com/retailcommerceserver
About ACI Worldwide
ACI Worldwide powers electronic payments for more than 750 financial institutions, retailers and processors around the world. The company has the broadest, most integrated suite of electronic payment software in the market. More than 75 billion times each year, ACI's solutions process consumer payments. On an average day, ACI software manages more than US$12T in wholesale payments. And for more than 150 organizations worldwide, ACI software helps to protect their customers from financial crime. For more information, visit www.aciworldwide.com or www.paymentsinsights.com.
SOURCE: ACI Worldwide