Trends in Loyalty Through 2023
In all of my years in the loyalty industry, the last few years have been the most tumultuous. The old adage, ‘the only constant is change’ looks to be the norm for the next few years as well.
With many businesses adopting new technologies and approaches to engage and reward their members, I thought it worthwhile to add to the many great articles and prognosticators and to highlight and synthesize some of the key trends that I believe will impact loyalty programs in the year ahead.
Looking ahead to 2023, there are several trends that I think are likely to shape the future of loyalty programs.
One trend that will continue to impact the loyalty industry in 2023 and beyond is the use of personalization and data analytics. This particular trend seems to be perennial as businesses use loyalty programs to collect more data on their customers’ spending habits and shopping preferences, to be able to tailor their promotions and communications to better meet the needs and interests of those individual customers. This will continue to evolve in light of privacy constraints and the level of consumer acceptance given it is a trade off to gain some aspirational reward.
Another trend that is likely to continue to gain momentum in 2023 is the convergence of physical and digital loyalty programs. With the proliferation of mobile devices and the increasing use of online shopping, it is becoming more common for businesses to offer loyalty programs that are accessible both in-store and online. This allows customers to earn and redeem rewards across a variety of channels, making it easier for them to participate in the program.
The continued pervasiveness of e-commerce and mobile payment platforms is also likely to drive the adoption of digital loyalty programs. These programs offer a convenient and secure way for customers to earn and redeem rewards, and they can be easily integrated into existing payment systems. This trend is likely to be particularly pronounced in markets where traditional loyalty programs are less prevalent, such as emerging economies and the adoption of loyalty points as a currency.
Another trend to watch in 2023 is the increasing focus on sustainability and social responsibility in loyalty programs. Many businesses are looking to incorporate elements of social and environmental impact into their loyalty programs, either by offering rewards that support these causes or by using the program as a way to encourage customers to adopt more sustainable behaviors.
The loyalty program landscape will continue evolving in 2023, with businesses adopting new technologies and approaches to engage and reward their customers. Personalization, the convergence of physical and digital loyalty programs, the rise of digital loyalty programs, and a focus on sustainability and social responsibility are all trends to watch in the coming year.
Time will show some loyalty programs will be more successful than others in adapting to these changes with those that remain flexible and adaptable to the needs of their most loyal customers, ultimately the long term winners.
And that is rewarding for everyone.
Engage People Inc.