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BizReport : Loyalty Marketing : August 22, 2013

Report: SMBs counting on loyalty

Small businesses (SMBs) are counting on loyalty to get them through. That, according to new data out from the BIA/Kelsey Group Local Commerce Monitor. According to the report SMBs believe loyalty programs will push about 17% of all their business over the next year.

by Kristina Knight

Loyalty promotions small businesses plan to utilize to grow their businesses include discount deals, daily deals, coupons and offers. To improve customer acquisition, SMBs say these promotions won't necessarily 'be aligned' with existing loyalty programs.

"The data indicates solid interest and intentions in loyalty programs, which are becoming an increasingly important tool for customer retention," said Steve Marshall, director of research, BIA/Kelsey. "Going forward, we believe the proportion of business generated from both loyalty programs and promotions will rise significantly, as SMBs increasingly tailor their offerings to frequent customers and specific customer segments."

According to the report more than one-third (38%) of small businesses currently offer a loyalty program while 21% say they'll add a loyalty program within the next year. Other interesting findings include:

• 54% of SMBs surveyed say they operate loyalty programs in-house
• SMBs are most likely to use 'paper tracking' loyalty programs like punch cards

"There's a large opportunity for third-party service providers and credit card companies to replace the homegrown loyalty platforms with sophisticated electronic platforms that link into a CRM system and/or a payments platform," said Marshall

The full report results will be presented at the LEADING IN LOCAL: SMB Digital Marketing conference in Austin, Texas, BIA/Kelsey's experts will discuss small business trends and developments in the loyalty and customer acquisitions space.

Image via Shutterstock

Tags: BIA/Kelsey, Local Commerce Monitor, loyalty marketing, loyalty program, small business marketing, SMB tips, SMB trends

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