Here’s Why The Holidays Are A Great Time to Boost Your Loyalty Program

The holiday shopping season is fast approaching. My local Costco is already selling gift wrap and decorations, gearing up for the marathon of spending.

Small businesses can benefit from the holiday shopping spree, too. While Black Friday may still be considered the official kick off, more shoppers are turning their attention to Main Street for Small Business Saturday. The Small Business Administration and the National Restaurant Association are working together to promote Small Business Saturday Night, when local shoppers gravitate toward neighborhood spots for a warm up, hearty meal, or nightcap after a day of gift buying.

This is the time to capture a new audience for your establishment, and convert those customers into loyalty program members. Here’s how to do it.

Offer a holiday gift for joining your loyalty program

Want diners to sign up for rewards, providing their email address in the process? Offer a little holiday gift, such as a free coffee or hot chocolate for joining. Offering an (edible) stocking stuffer is an ideal way to bring in new names for your loyalty program over the giving season.

Incentivize Friends and Family

Consider giving your loyal customers the gift of double rewards points during the holidays. It’s that time of year when families are out together, and, loaded down with packages, seek refuge at their favorite restaurant, coffee shop, or pub for a bit of warmth and sustenance. Capitalize on this ritual by doubling reward points for members who sign up a friend or family member.

Double Points Promotion

Another way to approach the scenario is to double rewards points during holiday happy hour promotions. Again, there’s nothing quite so comforting as your friendly neighborhood cafe, bar, or bistro during the holidays. It’s a warm refuge, filled with familiar faces and a snug place to settle in with a cup of tea or glass of craft beer while outside holiday shoppers bustle past in the drifting snow. Plus, they’ll be back to utilize those rewards points when you need them most, in the post-holiday slow season. Make those holiday moments count for their increased loyalty and your bottom line.

Start a Staff Contest

Engage your staff in the holiday cheer with a little friendly competition. Set a goal for signing up new loyalty program members and offer a prize to the one who gets the most people to join. This sort of game boosts morale and ensures everyone is working at winning every single opportunity. Expect to see big smiles on both sides of the bar.

A next-gen point-of-sale system like Instore makes it easy for your loyal customers to accrue points, purchase gift cards, and provides you with data you can use to increase sales and respond to changing spending patterns. The relationship between merchant and customer is greatly improved when incentive programs are seamless and user friendly. By encouraging more signups and gift card purchases over the holiday season, you can draw your best customers back to your establishment all year long.


Image Credit: Sureshkumar Varadarajan By CC BY-ND 2.0