There has been a number of occasions recently when people have asked me how they can build loyalty programme.
If you’re using WordPress, there are a number of different ways of creating a loyalty programme that both adds value, and drives and increases sales.
In the past I’ve talked about using affiliate relationships and affiliate offers to create a loyalty based membership area, which means that your clients have a login, they log into a particular area on the site and then they get the ability to buy discounted or coupon based offers that save them money.
In this article we’re going to look at something slightly different. We found a number of WordPress plugins that will now allow you to run your own loyalty programme, based on your own products and services. Now this would mean that you are best running WooCommerce and selling product through WooCommerce.
And then using one of the two plugins that I’m going to recommend.
They will allow you to run coupons that then people can apply to their own account to save themselves some money so how this could work is that it could be, they could get a pound for every 10 pounds they spend. And that comes in the form of a coupon, which they then redeem on further purchases.
So you could set something up like that quite quickly. You could also then use that in a wider context and use it for referrals as well. So anybody that’s referring people could also earn an income and maybe get, you know, some money for things that they that they share. So, just wanted to give you that as an idea so we’re going to talk about a couple of plugins. The first plugin is going to be advanced coupons, and the second plugin is a French plugin called woo rewards. So, like I say this is only really relevant for anybody that is using WooCommerce on their WordPress site to sell products.
So if you’re not, this probably won’t be suitable for you but this might be the motivation to get you to think about how you could use WooCommerce to sell products online.
Here we go.
A default WooCommerce setup can handle coupons in the most generalised way possible. By appealing to the broadest audience, they don’t generate any sense of personalisation or excitement, making them easy to ignore. Additionally, checking if a coupon is valid – especially if it’s a “limited number available” can involve getting into coding, which can be awkward.
Advanced Coupons uses automation and customisation as key selling points. The free version gives a taster of its potential, by letting you set coupons as being valid for specific customer roles and checking that the product the coupon applies to is actually in the cart at checkout. The full potential is in the Premium version, checking in at $39.50 or $74.50 for the first year, depending on whether you want the single or unlimited licence.
The premium features of Advanced Coupons lend themselves to running a loyalty program for your customers. Each module can be individually activated but once you’ve switched it on, customers can see how their purchases affect their loyalty points balance. The product listing and shopping cart can display how many points an order is worth, and they can keep track of their earned points. You can set the redemption value, earning rate, minimum redemption number and disallow roles from earning, who will never see the points information. You can even customise the name of your points.
- Simple loyalty points setup, no coding required
- Limit which customer roles can earn points
- Transparent redemption management for customers
- Enable bonus point activity coupons
- Guest purchases don’t earn, which encourages sign-ups
Update June 2021 – The Team at Advanced Coupons have released a plugin just to handle the loyalty scheme elements of their plugin. And it has a vast number of new options and functions.
You can even set it so that your customers can earn points in lots of other interesting ways like leaving product reviews, commenting on blog posts, registering a new customer account, making their first order, spending over a certain amount, and even extra points during a special promo period! Checkout the new pricing and plugin model here
Whereas Advanced Coupons is a coupon management system that has a loyalty program module, WooRewards, now on version 3, is dedicated to letting its users set up and manage one or more loyalty schemes. As such it offers more detailed options for managing customer interactions. WooRewards comes in one fully-featured version, with a 30 day trial, then annual licences starting from €70. VIP options granted extra licences, all include maintenance and updates.
WooRewards uses a wizard to set up your loyalty program(s) with a minimum of fuss. It covers the basic features of the plugin so you can get up and running quickly, but it also allows you to revisit the setup as and when you want to grow your program and include more elaborate options.
The basic “buy things earn points” setup takes 3-5 minutes, according to the developers. The wizard breaks out other functions so you can handle them individually in bite-sized chunks of time, such as setting up special events for holidays, enhanced rewards for registration anniversary or birthday and referrals, where both the customer and anyone they bring in are rewarded. One interesting feature in development is to reward customers for purchases made prior to them signing up to the loyalty program, which makes it a great option for bringing on board an existing store and rewarding existing customers.
- Simple, wizard-based setup
- Referral system baked in
- Various reward types, from straight points redemption to levelled reward systems
- Gamification via badges and achievements that can come with their own benefits
- Email automation to inform customers of expiring points, reward notifications and sponsorship rewards
One of these two plugins will give you enough functionality to create and manage a great loyalty programme that sales can drive either points which can be redeemed for discounts or one that uses coupons.