In August this year, British retailer John Lewis disappointed up to a million customers when it announced that free vouchers for tea and cake across John Lewis restaurants were being axed for existing loyalty card members.
More recently, there was an unrivalled customer backlash at Sainsbury’s, who announced last week that they were halving their Nectar points offering from two points for every pound spent, to one.
In order to keep customers’ expectations consistent, retailers need to tighten their loyalty strategies and avoid disenchantment.
A new online reward programme may just be the way to do that. Epoints, a cardless alternative for retailers with no dedicated loyalty initiative in place, can also work alongside existing loyalty schemes and incentivise the discerning shopper to spend.
Launched this month, epoints operates as a type of new online currency awarded on over 2,000 retailers. Customers can accrue epoints (typically between 2 - 4) with retailers in more ways than one, including online and offline spending and social media engagement with both epoints and its individual retailers.
The programme requires no investment or start-up costs from brand partners and can take away the expenditure used on the production of plastic cards, an asset of loyalty schemes that is becoming less than convenient for consumers’ wallet space.
For a typical epoints member, regular use can accumulate £200 to £250 worth of value, which is significantly more attractive than the average £25 - £30 of value accrued over the year through other retailers.
Currently, epoints has over two million redeemable products, gift cards and experiences and in addition to these, members of the programme can receive £200 worth of personalised vouchers each month.
There are over 2,000 online retailers on board from Agent Provocateur to Kurt Geiger and points earned can be spent with any of epoints’ partners.