Embracing mobile is crucial if you want to win over customers and increase their loyalty. Over 40 per cent of the world's population owns a smartphone, according to Pew Research. And in the Asia-Pacific region, smartphone ownership is even higher – Deloitte reveals 84 per cent of Australians currently own a smartphone. More of us than ever are doing everything on these devices, including interacting with businesses.
If you're not yet convinced, here are some reasons you need to optimise your customer loyalty program for mobile:
Almost 8 in 10 Australians are on social media, and 81 per cent of them prefer to use their mobile to access it.
1. Australian customers are using mobile more than ever
Australians use their phones a lot. In fact, 14.9 million of us use our phones to go online on a daily basis and 86 per cent of Australians aged 14 and over have a mobile phone, according to The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB). Smartphone and tablet ownership are on the up, too. So it's little surprise businesses are increasingly going mobile in an attempt to engage customers.
Gone are the days when people used mobile phones solely to call each other; nowadays, they're using them to search the internet and send snaps to friends via social media. A study by Australian marketing services company Sensis reveals almost 8 in 10 Australians are on social media platforms. And how do they like to access their social media accounts? On their smartphones, of course – 81 per cent of Australians prefer to use their mobile to access social media.
Sensis' research also reveals that where previously Australian consumers tended to be wary of business advertising on social media, they are growing more accustomed to it. For example, from 2016 to 2017 the level of trust among consumers of brands that interacted positively with them on social media increased from 52 per cent to 64 per cent. Levels of trust in businesses that provided engaging and relevant content also increased from 52 per cent to 63 per cent.
So, Australians are active social media users, they love using social media platforms on their mobile devices, and they're now more at ease with interacting with businesses on these platforms and devices. What does this mean for your business' customer loyalty program?
Australians are avid social media users, and prefer to use their smartphones to access social media platforms.
2. Your customers want a mobile experience
Nielsen research indicates 70 per cent of consumers in the Asia-Pacific region are much more likely to enrol and participate in a loyalty program if a mobile app is offered. Therefore, if you can harness the power of mobile, you'll see your customer loyalty levels significantly increase.
Here's how you can use mobile to improve your customer loyalty:
– Embrace social media
According to Sensis' study, 16 per cent of Australian consumers use social media (primarily on their smartphones) to research products and services. They also want to receive discounts (54 per cent) and giveaways (48 per cent) from brands they follow.
If you can interact with your customers through social media – via their smartphone – you'll definitely be capturing their attention.
– Enable mobile payments
The desire for a digital experience goes beyond social media; it also encompasses things such as digital payments and loyalty apps. Deloitte's report "Customer loyalty: A relationship, not just a scheme" recommends businesses provide mobile-enabled loyalty identifiers to create a "frictionless checkout experience" for customers.
Gone are the days of having a wallet filled with loyalty cards for various stores. Instead, we now have the "digital wallet". Platforms such as Apple Pay, Android Pay and Samsung Pay give users the power to store credit card details on their mobile and purchase without pulling out a separate wallet or card.
Mobile payments are the way of the future.
– Get yourself a loyalty app
Research by US company Pointsource has found that less than half of companies with a loyalty program offer a mobile version for their customers. This is surprising, especially considering that consumers want to interact with businesses via their mobile device; Deloitte's study reveals 24 per cent of Australian adults want a mobile app to order goods, and this jumps to 36 per cent among 18-24 year olds.
Large companies such as QANTAS and Virgin use loyalty apps, and there's no reason smaller businesses can't get on board too. In fact, small businesses can learn from the strategies these bigger businesses have employed. These airline companies have set up apps that can be set up to provide personalised notifications when flights go on sale, book flights or hotels through the app, manage their bookings, check their flight status and much more. Apps can be used to offer your customers discounts, send them push notifications when they've accumulated enough points to redeem rewards, alert them to exclusive events happening nearby, and much more.
By setting up your own app, you can also start engaging more with your customers and send them special offers, personal messages and provide them with helpful resources they can use to interact with you even after they've purchased. Your business needs to dive into the digital world and start building its mobile capabilities in order to retain current customers, attract new audiences and maintain a program that will continue to grow as the digital era expands.
To find out more about the benefits of mobile loyalty apps, download our free whitepaper, "Future Proofing Your Loyalty Program. What do you need?"
3. You'll get data to improve your customer engagement
When you make your loyalty program mobile, it's far easier to monitor who your customers are, what they want and how they interact with your business. You can monitor their engagement at different stages of the customer journey using analytics tools that provide insight into the ways people are interacting with your loyalty app.
With a mobile loyalty app, you can track things such as:
- Your customers' spending habits
- Which products or services your customers prefer
- The purchase history of your customers
- Who your top customers are
- The success of a particular offer or campaign
All these things provide invaluable insight into the behaviour of the people doing business with you, so you can improve your offering or tailor your marketing accordingly.
Embrace mobile loyalty with Muulla
If you're not already harnessing the power of mobile loyalty, you need to get on board – and Muulla can help. Our branded mobile app enables various customer-retailer interactions to enhance engagement and convenience, promote transaction efficiency and encourage customer loyalty.
Replacing traditional plastic cards, our app fits conveniently into a customer's "digital wallet", helping them earn rewards, monitor their account and review their transaction history – all from their smartphone. Customers can even 'plug' Muulla into virtually any existing loyalty platform to manage their loyalty accounts from a single branded app.
Interested in finding out more? Reach out to us today!