Slowly going crazy over Loyalty Programs
I have had a terrible time implementing and sticking with a Loyalty Program app that works well. All the major players look great on paper, but the devil is in the details and it's not always easy to become fully aware of the gotchas, no matter the testing one does.
Because there is obviously a clear customer impact, implementing a loyalty app is a ton of work and a lot of customer messaging. And here I am, back where I started looking for another loyalty program.
Rather than whine about the apps I have tried and launched (2), only to discover major gaps, let me state my requirements in terms of my what I have learned since starting off down this path. I am a small store (for now!) so don't have huge volume. My needs are as follows:
. Easy to fully integrate into my theme (Turbo). I am comfortable editing liquid but would prefer not to do so if it can be avoided.
. Intuitive, simple experience for visitors. They sign up, they get points (or, prefererably, simple dollars savings - would MUCH prefer to avoid coupons they need to obtain) and then save money.
. They can pay for shipping, where it's charged, completely separately when they redeem points. My current app requires that either I offer free shipping on pount redemption orders or the customer has to have enough points to pay for the shipping. The latter is REALLY frustrating to customers who have enough points to buy a product, but not enough for shipping and they have to buy more stuff to get those extra points.
. Provides me with full access to details about my customers. I have been very surprised at the loyalty apps that require me to send a request to support to get a list of my own customers, rather than just have an export feature. I "crunch" and automate this data in various ways, often for targeting purposes. Having to ask support for this is daft! Just give me a CSV.
. Is reasonably priced. At my levels that probably means $50 or less per month. What I find infuriating is that many apps have a huge jump from one price point to another. Swell, for example, goes from $29 for Bronze to $249 to Silver. That's not going to happen.
. All the usual and obvious rewards - purchase, social share, etc
. Tiers. I want to be able to automatically and manually place folks in a tier, which defines their earning rates. I actually think of this more as "rules" than tiers, in terms of how it might be implemented (by the way, that prompted me to look at Milestones but it seemed half-baked and I didn't like it much, even though the concept was interesting).
. Plenty of flexibility around how and where folks can earn points or discounts - across the store, by product, by collection, by date ("2x the points over Thanksgiving"), etc. This is kind of a generalization of the previous bullet, I guess, with the rules thing.
. Does not require me to replace my checkout page. This is essential. If I want to work around the aforementioned shipping costs issue, the app I am using right now requires me to replace the Shopify checkout page AND switch to a different payment gateway. My per order costs go up from 2.9% to 4.9%. Nope - not even close!
I am sure I can come up with some more but the list above touches on some of the pain points I have discovered. I want my next choice of loyalty app to be my last one :)
Would appreciate any pointers.