With Track and Trace coming into effect on 4 July, every bar and restaurant should register customer details so they can be contacted in the event of a Covid-19 outbreak. Taken together with reopening after three months’ closure, the hospitality sector is struggling to deal with this new challenge.

But there’s also an opportunity here. As pub-goers will now be expected to provide their contact details, a loyalty program can increase revenue while collecting customer information. Pubs, in particular, have long relied on passing trade. Now is the time to consider more sustainable ways of increasing repeat visits and customer spend.

“We have a perfect example of a temporary problem creating the conditions for a longer-term solution’, says Loyalzoo CEO Massimo Sirolla. ‘The government has said the industry needs to monitor in order to keep people safe. So you need a way of recording names, contact details and time of visit, and it has to be contactless, easy and hygienic.

“That’s what we do. Customers can check-in, either by giving their contact details at the till, registering at a tablet on the door or downloading the Loyalzoo app.

“So that covers the regulations. But the sweetener for customers is that they now get loyalty points when they buy. It makes giving contact details that bit easier. Then they’re more likely to go out for an evening where they have points, less likely where they don’t. That means more revenue for landlords running a loyalty program”.

Loyalzoo has been offering digital loyalty programs since 2014 and its software is fully integrated with a number of popular point-of-sale systems: EposNow, Clover and Poynt. But it also runs in ‘non-integrated mode’ on almost any till system or on a tablet or PC. Thousands of merchants worldwide use it. It is also fully compliant with GDPR.

Loyalzoo is proven, robust and easy to use and starts at just £19/month. To register for a free trial go to and get set up in minutes.

About Loyalzoo

Based in West London, Loyalzoo‘s mission is to help small/medium-sized businesses compete with larger retailers and hospitality by giving them the ability to set up their own, custom-made in-store loyalty program in just minutes, without the need to print cards or buy expensive hardware.

Loyalzoo, the digital loyalty service for SMEs, has announced that Jan-Pieter (JP) Lips is joining the board as a non-executive director. As one of the leading pioneers in the loyalty industry, co-founder and MD of Nectar, the UK’s largest loyalty program, and currently, Head of Unified Commerce Enablement at Adyen, JP’s huge experience of the loyalty industry will be an invaluable asset as the company prepares for stellar growth in its US, UK and European markets.

Started in 2014, Loyalzoo has grown to become a recognised brand, allowing smaller businesses reap the benefits of digital innovation. With an extensive product range and partnering with payment companies, such as merchant acquirers, and smart point-of-sale providers, the company has exploited new channels into this vast market which until now has proved hard to access.

With around 2,000 merchants in the US and UK paying for and using its platform, over 4 billion loyalty points given and over 150 new merchants signing up to its platform every month, Loyalzoo has helped transform how small business owners retain their customers and get them spending more. Industry experts as well as savvy merchants have long recognised that it is easier and far more cost-effective to increase spend from existing customers than trying to attract new customers with discount offers. Building on its success as the leading loyalty platform on First Data’s Clover POS, along with integrations on other Smart Pos systems, Loyalzoo has recorded year-on-year growth of over 100% and expects to exceed that growth from 2020 with other partnerships around the world.

Welcoming him to the Loyalzoo board, CEO Massimo Sirolla described JP as one of the leading innovators of the loyalty space. ‘He recognised the importance of loyalty to business success when others were still plugging discounts and offers. He has that pioneering spirit which we value so much at Loyalzoo and he understands the industry like few others. His experience and his contacts will be invaluable to us’.

JP added: ‘people have been scratching their heads for years trying to figure out how to penetrate the SME market for loyalty systems. The scale of it dwarfs the top tier of retailers but it’s incredibly hard to reach. From what I’ve seen, Loyalzoo has cracked it. They have a product set which excels what most of the big brands can offer; they have a tight and experienced team with a clear vision; they have a route to market which they’ve defined and proved. It’s a powerful proposition’.

With major partnerships at their concluding stages in both the US and UK as well as South America, Italy and Eastern Europe, Loyalzoo is well-placed for the next stage of its growth: becoming a world leader in customer loyalty platforms.

About Loyalzoo
Based in West London, Loyalzoo’s mission is to help small/medium sized businesses compete with larger retailers by giving them the ability to setup their own, custom made in-store loyalty program in just minutes, without the need to print cards or buy expensive hardware. Loyalzoo’s service is available directly via the company’s website, resellers, agents, as well as via the digital marketplaces of Clover POS, Aevi, Epos Now, and Poynt.

Starbucks has been getting a lot of attention in regards to their newly rolled out loyalty program. Mainly because of the sudden changes that caused an uproar in the Starbucks loving community.  The controversy around their “improvements” is teaching business owners that it’s important to know how to launch a successful loyalty program. It should be strategically planned for growth and revenue building.  Let’s look at Starbucks and take away some pointers from their new program.

Points or stamps?

successful loyalty programStarbucks started out with a stamps based program, awarding one stamp per visit and then switched their program to points based.  Now people are being rewarded for spending more, rather than visiting more. It is a tactical plan to switch from stamps to points, forcing customers to hand over those extra dollars.  If you’re a business with a large variety of products, it’s advisable to start with a points based program. Awarding your customers for spending larger amounts with you, rather than forcing them to head to a competitor for the extras.


Let’s get personal

Allowing customers flexibility is one way to make them feel like they are really part of a loyalty program. successful loyalty programStarbucks is now driving personalised offers to customers based on their prior behaviours. This is a complex feature of a loyalty program but can be simulated by offering accumulative rewards. Meaning the more points the customer accumulates, the better the rewards. Consumers can then choose to redeem the smaller offers or keep building more points for something of better value.  Once again pushing customers to spend more with you, which at the end of the day is what you want out of a good loyalty program.

Promotions, promotions, promotions

Don’t fall into the trap of sending marketing emails to your loyal customers. In fact this is the wrong way tosuccessful loyalty program go about signing up customers to your loyalty program. There is a lot of stigma around signing up to a loyalty program and then only receiving uninteresting updates about a business. Give your customers something to get excited about! Plan promotions a couple of times a month and send them out via SMS or push. This will really get your customers going and get them to take action instantaneously. Starbucks do this really well by providing promotions by push notification in their app.

Is Starbucks running a successful loyalty program?

So maybe the critics have it all wrong? After the storm of its new release, Starbucks new loyalty program is still proving to be a hit but it has taught us a valuable lesson. Plan a successful loyalty program and not only will your customers thank you for it but you will be thanking yourself for a nice revenue boost!

regulars vs customers

regulars vs customers

The big brands have deep pockets and domineering presence, and pair this with free parking and low prices it is hardly surprising that customer choose them.

But for the very reasons that make the big shops attractive, they also make themselves vulnerable to shopper-savviness. The big brands are clones of each other, meaning shoppers have little reason to choose one over the other. Brand loyalty at this scale is rare and this is why the big brands are constantly working to drive their shoppers back to them. Here is a quick look at some of the strategies employed:

Free parking – Hardly a groundbreaking strategy, but nevertheless important. The point is to make the choice as easy and effortless as possible for the customer. Looking for parking and paying for it adds friction.

Brand comparison – Price wars are raging and supermarkets spend almost as much time talking about their competitors as themselves, in a bid to show the customer that they are cheaper than so and so. Some will even print their competitor’s name on the receipt!

Time-limited discounts – Some of the big supermarkets will give you a voucher along with your receipt, often with a neat little saving on your next shop. But have you ever looked at this in detail? Notice the expiry date. This has not been chosen at random, but is carefully calculated by marketeers and analysts, and is usually set to just before a customer would ‘naturally’ do their next shop. The purpose is, of course, to drive the shopper back in sooner – increasing the frequency of their visits and therefore increasing their spend.

Complex loyalty cards – The big brands all have some sort of loyalty program where customers earn points for their spend. But have you noticed the rewards? A store voucher or discount, which is what you might expect, is sidelined by rewards at other, non-competitive businesses such as restaurant vouchers, cinema tickets and online shopping vouchers. All very tempting to consumers – who feel like they are getting a special treat just for doing their everyday shopping.

Together these strategies all work towards one goal; make the customer come back more often and spending more, each time. But you don’t have to be a big brand with deep pockets to take advantage. If you can’t offer free parking, can you be flexible with your opening hours? Be the easier option for customers. Once a customer has chosen you once, you have the opportunity to turn them into regulars by offering a competitive, enjoyable experience in store.