How to Leverage Your Loyalty Program To Increase Sales This Black Friday

Aleksandra Velkova on November 02, 2020

Time for a quick reality check: 

Black Friday this year is going to be different: with Covid 19 closing down a significant number of brick-and-mortar shops, online shopping will be in full swing! 

This means consumers will be virtually storming the shops they love and adore in an attempt to buy the things and experiences they’ve had on their shopping lists for months ahead. 

If you’re thinking about the sales strategy you should implement to make the most out of this shopping season, you may want to consider changing heavy discounting with a more appealing and long-term beneficial alternative: your loyalty and rewards program. 

The beauty of the creative sales strategies you could deploy leveraging your loyalty program is in the long-term results they bring in the form of increased customer lifetime value. So in essence, you’re not just running for a short-term win with an increased number of orders during BFCM, but you’re starting a beautiful relationship with your new customers that will bring value to you for months to come after Christmas. 

Let's explore how you can use the increase in store traffic during this Black Friday to acquire new customers, engage your existing customers to spend more at your store and promote your brand and how to leverage email marketing to offer exclusive deals to your most loyal customers. 

Is joining your loyalty program easy and joyful?

Most loyalty and rewards programs tend to be complex for users: asking for too much information, going through several steps in order to complete the membership - it’s no wonder the average consumer belongs to 14.8 loyalty programs but is only active in 6.7 of them.

Similarly like when the seller in a clothing boutique keeps following you around breathing in your neck when all you want is to look around in peace, online shoppers don’t tolerate being bugged - they’re here to buy, not to fill out forms. 

Make it super-easy, fast and appealing for new website visitors to join your brand community. Invite them to earn welcome points for shopping at your store after they’ve created an account. 

This is an instant win for both parties: you know who your new shoppers are so you can communicate with them way after the holidays and they just got points to use for discounts at checkout!

Pro tip: ask for the most essential information only, like an email address, name and last name. Don’t over complicate the joining process and risk losing your store visitors completely.

Arena Flowers has done an amazing job on keeping the joining process to their “Arena Rewards” program clean and simple:

  • Make it visible

To make the most of each shopping interaction with your visitors, make sure your program is easily visible and accessible from every page on your e-commerce site. 

While it’s always good to have a dedicated Rewards page that explains your program in detail, making it hard for users to find it and then go back to their shopping activity isn’t a good idea. 

Pro tip: design your widget on-brand and place it on a clear, visible place on your pages. Make sure customers can always see it, regardless whether they’re scrolling or browsing from one page to another.

Milky Mama does this perfectly well: their widget reflects their brand in all aspects like color, fonts, and icons and blends in the overall web store design. 

It’s displayed on every page so regardless what the visitor is looking at the moment, they can access their rewards program in just a click. 

 Source: Milky Mama

  • Brand it 

Your loyalty program is an asset to your ecommerce business. If designed and branded right, it gets an identity of its own and works wonders for your sales and lead generation efforts. 

Just look at the Beauty Insider by Sephora:

Source: Sephora

  • It has its own memorable name which is consistently used in all communications methods.

  • It has its own dedicated page on the Sephora website where all the campaigns their team prepares are housed.

  • It’s on brand, with their branding book colors and fonts. 

Such beautifully designed rewards programs communicate exclusivity and a sense of belonging to a special group - something every shopper wants to experience.

Engage your customers to promote your Black Friday campaign

It goes without say that you should create a Black Friday Sales campaign and advertise it heavily on your website and social media channels. An eye-catchy creative with the most essential information of the sale is especially important to be distributed on major social media where people can learn about it and take action. 

In addition to strategic social media marketing, you can leverage your loyalty referral program to spread the word about your sales event in a way that brings value to your customers, the new prospects and your business. 

It’s well known that people trust their friends and family 5x more than they trust brand messages so by using referrals there’s 5 times bigger chance of a sale happening than a simple announcement.

Pro tip: create a special “holiday-inspired” referral campaign for your customers. For a limited time only, you can reward the customers who refer your brand to as many friends and family with a more lucrative gift, such as more spending points at your store during Black Friday, or even a free product!

For new customers, make sure you reward them for becoming members of your program with welcome points as well as with points for buying from you as per the referral. 

Here’s how I Love Linen - a brand that sells high quality, luxury linen products does it: