Why Coffee Shops Should Create Loyalty and Rewards Programs for Their Customers

October 29, 2022
10 min read
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What is a customer loyalty or rewards program?‍

If you're a business owner who owns a coffee shop, corner deli, restaurant, or whatever place that serves coffee then you should know how important it is to create loyalty and rewards programs for your customers.

There are many different ways to structure a customer loyalty program, but the basic premise is always the same: provide rewards to customers who keep coming back or qualify for doing certain action. These rewards can take many different forms, from discounts on future purchases to free or upgraded items to cash back on every purchase.

For example, many cafes offer punch cards that give the tenth cup of coffee for free. But the tide has turned. Businesses are reverting to digital apps and especially cash back programs.‍

Why are digital loyalty programs better than conventional paper punch cards?‍

In a world where contactless transactions are becoming the norm, digital loyalty cards offer a great way for cafes to keep track of their customer's preferences and reward them for their loyalty.

For customers, digital loyalty cards can be easily accessed on their smartphones and provide a convenient way to keep track of their favorite drinks and snacks. For the issuer, whether it is a restaurant or coffee shop the digital loyalty programs are really much easier and faster to manage than traditional punch cards. Nowadays digital loyalty programs can be tracked directly from the purchase with a card-linked offers (CLO) technology so that cashiers don’t have to check any symbols on customers' phone screens or read any QR codes from them. That streamlines the process a lot because we all know how frustrating it can be sometimes to start to show some QR codes to cashiers.

Overall digital loyalty and reward programs offer an easy way to redeem rewards, coupons, punch cards, and cash back. With so many benefits for both coffee shops and customers, it's no wonder that digital loyalty and rewards programs are becoming increasingly popular.‍

How do loyalty programs help coffee shops increase revenue?‍

Any business owner knows that customer retention is essential to success. Not only does it cost less to keep a customer than to find a new one, but happy customers are also more likely to refer friends and family.

For coffee shop owners, an effective customer loyalty program can be a powerful tool for retaining existing customers and attracting new ones. A well-designed loyalty program will offer rewards that are valuable to customers and easy to redeem.

It should also be simple to use so that customers don’t get frustrated or lose interest. By offering incentives that appeal to their target audience, coffee shop entrepreneurs can easily encourage customer loyalty and build a strong base of repeat customers.

Now, without further ado, let’s discuss why coffee shops should create loyalty programs.‍

Woman looking at her phone and seeing cash back notification she earned from shopping at Mikes Deli & Coffee

1. Loyalty programs create a sense of community among your customers.

As said before, we all know that attracting and retaining customers is one of the key factors for successful businesses. Especially if you are selling something people are buying on a regular basis. One way to encourage loyalty among your customer base is to implement a loyalty program.

By offering rewards for repeat business, you create a sense of community among your customers. They feel appreciated and valued and are more likely to continue doing business with you. In addition, loyalty programs should also help to increase word-of-mouth marketing for your business, because who wouldn’t encourage their friends to join them in the coffee shop where they know that they will get rewards when they buy that excellent cappuccino? 

When customers feel like they are part of a community, they are more likely to tell their friends and family about your products or services.‍

2. They reward your customers for their loyalty.

There are many different types of loyalty programs, but all share the same goal of rewarding customers for shopping at your business. Loyalty programs can be used to offer discounts, free shipping, merchandise, or even free products. By offering these rewards, businesses can and will encourage customers to keep coming back. 

In addition, loyalty programs can help businesses to track customer behavior and preferences. This data can be used to improve the overall customer experience.‍

3. They increase customer spending.

I think we already know at this point that there's no doubt that loyalty programs can be beneficial for businesses and get customers to visit more often. By rewarding customers for their spending, businesses can not only encourage them to continue doing business with them but actually even spend more when they do.

In fact, research has shown that loyal customers are not only more likely to spend more with a business, but they're also more likely to be less price-sensitive and recommend the business to others.

However, it's important to create a loyalty program that is well-designed and offers rewards that are valuable to your customers.

Otherwise, you run the risk of creating a program that is nothing more than a marketing expense. To be effective, your loyalty program should be simple to understand and easy to use. The best reward programs are usually very simple so that the customers can feel that they have earned something every time they buy something.‍

By carefully designing your loyalty program, you can encourage customer spending and grow your business. For example, Mastercard tells that you can see a 20% increase in average order value when businesses have offered customers card-linked offers like cash back.

woman standing and smiling behind restaurant counter with loyalty and rewards program stats floating on her left side.

4. With loyalty programs and rewards marketing you don’t have to pay from clicks or views. Only from revenue.‍

When you're running a business, it can be difficult and really time consuming to determine the best way to market yourself. Some people go with traditional methods like print ads or billboards, while others rely on social media or other digital marketing strategies.

Loyalty and reward programs are a great way to do marketing, especially if you're interested in improving your bottom line. Their primary benefit is that they're performance-based, which means that you don't have to pay for something that doesn't work. This is particularly important for small businesses because it's hard to tell what works and what doesn't when you're just starting out.

But with loyalty programs, you usually pay a small commission to your loyalty provider from every payment that is tracked through a loyalty or rewards program. 

That means for example that if you would start a cash back marketing campaign with a provider like Benjamin, you would not have to pay anything if you don’t get customers to buy something in your store through campaigns (that has never happened though). So it is quite different than with something like TV commercials where you have to pay sometimes hundreds of thousands upfront and you don’t really know if it is going to get you any new customers.‍

5. They increase brand awareness and loyalty.‍

As especially marketing professional knows, brand awareness and customer loyalty can make or break the success of any business, especially small and local business. One way to increase brand awareness and loyalty is to implement a loyalty program. 

It's important for businesses to have brand awareness because it helps them stand out from their competitors. If you're trying to sell a product or service, but there are lots of other companies selling similar things (like coffee), then customers may not be able to tell the difference between your business coffee (even though we all know that your coffee is the best) and your competitor. But if they know what your brand is all about, and that you will give them for example 2% cash back then they'll be more likely to choose you over another company that sells a similar product but doesn’t offer them cash back, because that's how the human mind operates. ‍

brunette haired woman looking at her phone and seeing notification about cash back offer

In addition, loyalty programs help to build a sense of community around a brand, making customers feel like they are part of something larger. Your customers can start to compare with their friends who have earned the most rewards or cash back from your coffee shop and that can turn into wonderful buzz on all platforms (just imagine if and when they start to share the pictures that they have got $24.20 cash back from coffee purchases from their favorite local coffee shop).‍

If a business really wants to leverage its loyalty program it can implement it to be a part of a bigger group of loyalty programs when the offer is seen by everyone who uses the app.Then their offers can get in front of millions of cardholders and customers don’t have to download a specific app for every business where they would like to get rewards. That streamlines the process a lot from a customer side of view and give businesses even bigger benefit from their loyalty program.

There are a plenty of cashback and rewards program apps that consolidate many loyalty programs to the same apps like American Express, Benjamin, Rakuten, Ibotta, and Checkout 51. The biggest problem for smaller businesses with these kind of apps is that usually they accept only big brands to be included in their app. That creates a situation where smaller local coffee shops don't have an equal chance to get in front of those millions of users that use the app. Luckily that is not the case with Benjamin.

How to create cash back-powered loyalty or rewards program for a coffee shop?‍

At Benjamin, we understand that running a successful marketing campaign can be a challenge. That's why we made creating loyalty and rewards programs simple, fast, and easy for businesses of all sizes and especially for coffee shops. Testing and doing marketing with cash back loyalty and rewards programs hasn't ever been this easy.

1. Create campaigns easily with Benjamin's cash back marketing tool‍

We know that businesses today are under constant pressure to find ways to stand out in a competitive marketplace. We also know that one way they can do this is by offering loyalty rewards to their customers. However, designing and managing a loyalty program used to be really a time-consuming and expensive endeavor that was not achievable for small and local businesses that probably need them most.

That's where Benjamin comes in. Our platform makes it easy for businesses of all sizes to create and manage a cash back loyalty program, and our universal approach means that customers can earn cash back at any participating business. For businesses that means that there are more people in the app that can see your offer - and once again, showcasing the offer in front of millions of consumers doesn't cost you anything.

This makes it easy for businesses to attract new customers and build loyalty among their existing base. And best of all, our platform is free to use, so businesses can start earning money immediately.

Computer on a counter in front of a sunny window. On a computer screen there is Benjamin cash back marketing and loyalty tool open on full screen.

2. Create cash back campaigns without any additional equipment - straight from your POS‍

We offer cash back campaigns that are easy to set up and don't require any additional equipment. You can create campaigns by yourself or our experienced team can work with you to create a custom campaign that fits your budget and targets your customers.

We'll also provide training and support so you can get the most out of your campaign. But since our app is os easy to use, you should be able to manage it on your own too.

4. Earn money when you invite your customers to the app‍

As a business owner you already probably have some kind of email list (at least you should!) of your customers. Leverage that list and invite people from the list to join our app and we will pay both of you from sign-ups. You will also get an opportunity to send people you have invited a free push notifications and utilize our ready-made templates on our platform.

When your customers join, we will give them credits that they can use at your store, so you know that they will come to visit your place. This will also encourage them to spend more since we will pay a part of their purchase.

A Man, Small business owner smiling and holding his hands crossed in the next of a coffee machine. On top of the image there is a blue overlay with the texts about Benjamin cash bak loyalty and rewards programs.

5. Performance-based and effortless campaigns

At Benjamin, we believe that businesses should only be paying for results, not for setup or monthly fees. That's why we offer simple, 100% performance-based programs to drive more customers to your store with cash back marketing.

With our programs, you only pay when customers take specific actions that you've defined, such as making a purchase or signing up for a loyalty program. This means that you can track your ROI and ensure that you're only paying for marketing that is actually driving results.

So, if you're looking for a more effective and efficient way to market your business, come to Benjamin and try our performance-based cash back marketing today. We have a special deal for 100 businesses who sign up before the 20th of October - We will give you $200 worth of free cash back credits you can give to your customers! So sign up now, there are not that many spots left.

Sign up from here


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