Customer loyalty the lifeline companies need

Photo by Liza Summer

Antavo released its 2023 Global Customer Loyalty Report highlighting an increasing reliance on loyalty programs to overcome concerns around inflation and potential recession.

The research serves to help decision makers navigate and identify the investment opportunities of loyalty programs, with a focus on business, customers and wider global issues.

Based on the behavioural data from more than 290 million loyalty member actions, over 600 minutes of qualitative interview and data from over 260 industry professionals:

  • 88.5% of respondents trusted loyalty initiatives to help them overcome the current inflation crisis 
  • 67.7% have plans to increase or significantly increase their investment in customer retention over the inflation crisis and possible recession
  • 78.6% of companies with existing loyalty programs are looking to revamp or make significant changes in the next three years – growing from 71.6% last year
  • 93.7% agreed that customer loyalty should be the primary focus over customer acquisition due to the current economic climate

Key decision makers looking to invest in or revamp their loyalty programs are also able to understand how best to achieve the best ROI, as 2022 data from the Antavo platform reveals:

  • The lifetime value of members who spend points in a loyalty program is 6.3X higher
  • Members who redeem personalised offers spend 4.5X more annually
  • Program members who redeem partner rewards have 3.4X higher spend

Zsuzsa Kecsmar, Antavo’s co-founder and Chief Strategy Officer said: “We are facing a time of great uncertainty. Struck by the looming financial crisis and economic recession, brands and retailers need to invest in loyalty marketing and technology more wisely than ever.

“Even in such a turbulent economic climate, customer loyalty can be the way out. Companies plan to focus much more on their existing customers and studies from this year forecast that the loyalty management market will grow to $18.2 billion by 2026.

“But, first, businesses will have to weather the storm of the current economic downturn by investing in their customer retention efforts – and that starts with loyalty.”

Personalisation of customer interactions and experiences was identified as a key requirement for maintaining and future proofing loyalty schemes. Upcoming trends point towards increased strategic partnerships for extended program reach, more environmental social governance (ESG) influenced causes and greater use of card linking for continuing success.