One of the best ways to market your online store is to have customers who already love you singing your praises to their friends. In this episode, I’m going to walk you through how to set up a rewards program for your online shop. I’ll cover various apps you can use to build it, things to consider when structuring your program and how to get the word out about it.
HOW TO SETUP A REWARDS PROGRAM FOR YOUR ONLINE SHOP
What is the difference between an ambassador and a rewards program?
With an ambassador or affiliate program, you can set that up pretty easily behind the scenes by using coupon codes within Shopify. If you have a handful of top customers, consider reaching out and asking if they’d like to be an ambassador. If it’s just a few people, then you can easily keep track of how many times their code is used and reward them accordingly, look to do this on other platforms also, for example look into this Shopify vs Wix review and decide for yourself which eCommerce platform you could benefit the most from. For example, for every 5 customers they send you, you can email them a gift card for $25. For more info on setting up an ambassador program, check out Episode 38 with Kelsey of Barklyn Grace. We go into a lot of detail on that there. If you plan on having lots of affiliates, you might want to check out apps like Refersion or Tapfiliate (both are paid, but offer a ton of functionality).
What are the basics of setting up a rewards program?
First, make it simple – say exactly what people need to do and what they’re getting for it. Second, make it easy to earn points or rewards. If the only rewards level takes a year to reach, then most people will be discouraged quickly and lose interest.
I think it’s a good strategy to look at what your average order value is and base the rewards around there. For my store, it’s around $35 right now. I thought about what kind of rewards someone would be able to unlock after making 2 average purchases. Maybe you set the reward a little higher so that the customer is encouraged to add one extra small thing to their cart.
What apps can I use to manage a rewards program in my store?
If your store is set up through Shopify, as mine is, then you have a lot of options. I decided to use Smile since I saw a lot of other shops using it recently. It was so easy to set up, and for the basic services, it’s free. Other apps I’ve heard good things about are Swell and Loyalty Lion. They both have free plans available.
With Smile, I can give people points for following me on Facebook and Instagram. I can give points to them for signing up for the program and I can automatically give points to them on their birthday. The app also lets you give points based on purchases. I set mine up so that $1 spent equals 1 point
If you think about it – that’s what Sephora and a lot of other big brands do. Not that you have to follow their lead, but it’s a formula that consumers are accustomed to.
How do I let people know about my rewards program?
To put it simply, you have to tell them! That’s obvious, right? It’s amazing to me though how many brands don’t actually tell people what it is they sell or do enough. I’m guilty of this, too! It’s important to talk about your rewards program in emails, social posts, IG stories, in conversation with customers in person and on your actual website. Set up a page all about the rewards program (think of it as an FAQ) and link it up in the footer menu of your site. You can also set up banner ads throughout your site telling people to join the rewards program. Or how about mentioning it in product descriptions? Tell people how many points they would earn when they buy that item!
Something I did when I set my rewards program up was to give points to my existing customers. My shop has been open for 9 months (everyone who bought in that time period) so I set up a special tag for them in Shopify. I went into Smile to give them 25 points as a thank you for being my early supporters. Then I went into ConvertKit, the service I use to do my email blasts and sent an email out to all those people telling them about the new program. This was also a great way to thank them for their support so far and also get them clicking through to the site to see the new merchandise I have.
CHECK OUT THE SHOP!
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