How to design a successful Shopify loyalty program

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Customer loyalty is the outcome of a reciprocal relationship. Its intensity depends on how far you go to engage your most loyal customers.

Implementing a basic loyalty program isn’t enough to transform engagement today and the e-commerce ecosystem is beginning to acknowledge this shift. You must craft a suite of tailored experiences for your most valued customers to win their loyalty. For example, it could be an exclusive, limited offer for your mobile app users or a giveaway that you host for your VIP customers.

Mobile loyalty programs can make or break your business, and as a Shopify merchant, you should understand how to do it right. This article will help you create a tailored loyalty program with personalized shopping experiences, reward points, tiered benefits, referral perks, and more.

What is a Shopify loyalty program?

A Shopify loyalty program rewards customers by offering discounts, free services, and various incentives to encourage loyalty and repeat purchases. 

There are several advantages to a mobile app loyalty program:

  • Better chances of word-of-mouth customer referrals from loyal customers
  • Higher customer retention rate when people find value in your loyalty program
  • More sales – 79% of consumers say that loyalty programs make them buy again from the brand
  • Increase brand image as regular customers become loyal advocates for your brand

The top aspects of a loyalty program

Mobile loyalty apps help you discover and sustain loyal customers. Below is a breakdown of the top features of a Shopify loyalty program to consider as you start designing your loyalty solution.

1. Reward points

Reward points are one of the main aspects of any mobile loyalty program for your Shopify store. Customers can earn these loyalty points through purchases and engagement with your brand and use them to access various custom rewards, like discounts, exclusive benefits, or free products.

The higher the engagement with your brand, the more points your customers will earn. This helps gamify loyalty and boost customer engagement. Reward points also help incentivize customers to do more business with you and make repeat purchases.

2. Tiered benefits

Another common aspect of a Shopify loyalty program is tiered benefits. These provide customers with different rewards based on their loyalty or spending level, and as customers progress through different tiers, they gain access to unique perks.

Check out how Dot & Key, a beauty and skincare brand, offers tiered discounts and combo offers for their app users.

Your Shopify store's basic tier might provide standard discounts, while a higher-level tier can offer exclusive access to products or free services. This feature is critical to a successful Shopify loyalty program because it encourages customers to engage with your brand until they reach the highest level of loyalty.

3. Mobile shopping experiences

Create a user-friendly app for your superfans to offer a streamlined shopping experience. When you own a mobile app, you also own the first-party data. 

Use push notifications to engage your app users with new product drop alerts or deals. Check out how Skin Kulture uses push notifications to offer special discounts to their app users on various occasions. 

And when you add images or videos to these notifications, you increase conversions by more than 3X!

4. Referral perks

Referral programs are crucial to your loyalty program because they incentivize your existing customers to help you discover new, untapped customer bases. When customers provide referrals, they gain access to unique benefits like bonus reward points, discounts, or free products for themselves and the referred individual.

Check out this affiliate program offered by Vintage Boho Bags, for example.

Referrals are essential because they provide an outlet for word-of-mouth marketing, a simple way to promote your brand without investing in complicated and expensive marketing campaigns. Referrals build up your social proof and encourage users to sign up way more than any other form of marketing campaign. You increase customer loyalty and attract new audiences by enabling customers to refer other people to your brand.

5. VIP access

Premium benefits, such as VIP access for your most loyal customers, include exclusive benefits like early access to new products, special events, and limited edition products that non-VIP members can’t access.

By allowing your loyal customers to become VIP members, you provide a sense of exclusivity and belonging with your brand, making customers feel valued and appreciated for their loyalty. VIP access often includes personalized services and dedicated customer support to strengthen customer relationships.

6. Memberships and subscriptions

Finally, one of the core aspects of mobile app loyalty is memberships and subscriptions that encourage continuous engagement with your brand. With this feature, loyal customers pay a monthly or yearly fee to join a loyalty program and gain access to ongoing, exclusive benefits with loyalty cards.

Membership benefits often include free product shipments, bonus reward points on every purchase, and access to exclusive products unavailable to non-members. These programs aren’t only important for fostering customer loyalty – they also help you create a predictable revenue stream.

How to design a successful Shopify loyalty program

Designing a successful Shopify loyalty program is possible using services like Vajro, an app builder for mobile loyalty on the Shopify marketplace. Vajro has several unique features that make it one of the best options for enhancing the customer experience through an exclusive loyalty rewards program.

But how can you leverage Vajro’s features and design a successful Shopify loyalty program? Here are the main steps you’ll need to take to create a rewards program that thrives.

1. Understand your customers

Create your loyalty program by studying your current customer base and paying close attention to people who have made repeat purchases. You can also conduct customer surveys to assess your current customer base and what they’re looking for in a loyalty program.

Use the following questions to better understand your loyal customers:

  • How frequently do customers purchase, and what products do they buy?
  • How many times does the customer make a purchase annually?
  • How much do you earn from this customer?
  • How satisfied is the customer with your products and services?
  • How long has the individual been a customer?
  • How can you improve your offerings to meet their needs?

Vajro integrates with Firebase, Google Analytics, Meta, and AppsFlyer to provide detailed insights into customer behavior and actions that you can then use to craft personalized shopping experiences.

2. Choose a loyalty program that aligns with your brand

There are different types of loyalty programs and offerings to choose from when designing your Shopify loyalty program. When you start designing your program, you might feel overwhelmed with several options to incentivize your customers.

Designing a successful loyalty program is possible when you choose the model best suited to your business. Some examples of programs you might consider include:

  • Tiered loyalty programs
  • Points-based programs
  • Paid loyalty programs, like membership and subscription models
  • Value-based loyalty programs
  • Gamified loyalty programs

For instance, Vintage Boho Bags has gamified the mobile shopping experience by hosting a viral giveaway on their app homepage.

3. Create a personalized loyalty program

Personalization is key to a successful Shopify loyalty program, so collecting user data to help you personalize offers for existing customers is crucial. Using data from past purchases means you can better understand individual user interactions with your brand, making your outreach efforts more effective and enhancing the success of your loyalty program.

Beyond using a customer’s shopping patterns to create a personalized experience, consider things like birthdays and anniversaries (relevant to your product portfolio) to help all customers feel like valued members of your brand.

For example, Skin Kulture offers 25% off to celebrate their CEO’s birthday month. Cool and creative.

4. Choose the right loyalty tactics

Not all loyalty tactics will suit your business, and that’s fine – as long as you know which tactics will increase customer retention. Assess your customer base and explore loyalty tactics that will connect with your audience, choosing tactics related to customer purchases.

For example, some loyalty tactics you might consider when developing your Shopify loyalty program include:

  • Personal invitations to exclusive events
  • Premium, 24/7 customer service
  • Additional discounts when customers reach purchase milestones
  • Regular visits from sales representatives, especially if your customers are other businesses
5. Launch your customer loyalty program

Once you’ve determined the strategies that will work best for your business, it’s time to create and launch your loyalty program. You can create an effective loyalty program using services like Vajro to develop an interface that connects with your customers.

After launching your program, it’s important to focus on promotion. While customers will benefit from your offerings, your program won’t succeed unless your customer base knows the option to join a loyalty program.

Focus your marketing efforts on promoting the program to your existing customers, encouraging them to sign up. Provide comprehensive information about the program’s benefits and why customers should join.

Remember to use marketing channels like email, social media, and push notifications to promote your program – the more people who know about your offerings, the more likely you will succeed.

Design a Shopify loyalty program with Vajro

Building a loyalty program for your Shopify brand is possible using tools like Vajro. Vajro is an app builder for mobile loyalty available on the Shopify marketplace, dedicated to your store’s ongoing success.

Whether you’re building a new loyalty program or enhancing your existing one, Vajro can help. Explore Vajro today by taking advantage of our free demo or a 30-day trial to see how Vajro can help you build customer loyalty.

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