It seems like every major ecommerce company has launched a loyalty program of its own at this point. And when you look at the data, it’s easy to see why these companies are doing so.
While it’s certainly important to find new customers for your business, retaining your existing customers is even more important — visitors who have been to your site before are five times more likely to make a purchase than first-time visitors.
By using a loyalty program that offers perks such as discounts and free shipping, you can motivate the people who are most likely to make purchases to keep coming back for more.
It’s not enough, though, to have just any kind of loyalty program. Only about half of loyalty program accounts are active, which means your program will need to be especially well-designed and easy-to-use for it to be effective.
In this guide, we’ll review 10 apps that allow anyone to set up a highly effective loyalty program for their BigCommerce store.
Each of the following BigCommerce plugins stands out as an excellent option for creating a loyalty program. Depending on your budget and specific needs, some plugins (just like store themes) will be a better fit for you than others.
Here's a list of our top 10:
Smile.io’s loyalty program app is centered around three main features: points, referrals and VIP.
The points feature allows you to dole out points to visitors for performing actions such as creating an account, purchasing a product or sharing one of your posts on social media. It also allows you to decide what your customers can exchange their points for, with reward options including percentage discounts, dollar discounts, free products and free shipping.
With the referral feature, you can offer customers the same types of rewards for referring customers to your business rather than earning points.
And the VIP feature provides you with additional ways to persuade your customers to stick with you, such as contest entries and invites to special events. But this feature likely won’t be available to smaller stores, as it only comes with the plans that start at $599 per month.
Speaking of pricing, Smile.io offers the following plans:
For rewards, this app offers features such as pre-built campaign choices, custom branding and tier-based programs. It also provides a dashboard for tracking the activity of your loyalty program members and measuring ROI.
For referrals, there’s a tool for incentivizing repeat referrals by letting your members store up value for better rewards as they make more referrals. Other features include intelligent pop-ups and email campaigns for encouraging referrals, as well as a referral analytics dashboard.
Unfortunately, pricing information for this app is not publicly available. The cost of Yotpo Loyalty & Referrals is based on your business needs — you’ll need to contact them for a quote.
S Loyalty is a great choice if you’re on a tight budget. In addition to the free version of this app, there are several low-cost plans that are highly affordable and yet still offer a variety of useful features.
Specifically, they provide you with the following feature sets and price points to choose from:
The LoyaltyLion app is an excellent choice for merchants who are interested in analytics, as it provides plenty of features for tracking member activity and measuring the performance of your loyalty program.
It is a little expensive compared to some of your other options, though. The pricing plans include:
Zinrelo reports that its users see an 80% increase in repeat sales, a 50% improvement in profitability and a 240% increase in revenue per customer from using this app.
There are two plans available: SMB and Enterprise.
For pricing, you’ll need to contact Zinrelo for a quote.
In addition to loyalty and referral programs, Gratisfaction also allows you to engage your visitors with a variety of different contests, sweepstakes and giveaways.
This app is free for up to 100 loyalty members. After that, prices range from $19.95 per month for 500 loyalty members to $399 per month for unlimited loyalty members. There’s also a $19.95 per month fee for the “white label” version of Gratisfaction, which removes its branding from emails and pop-ups.
With Reward Camp, you get an app that’s proven it can produce results for its users. One case study showed that a store generated over $200,000 just through using this plugin.
Indeed, Reward Camp provides you with everything you need to create your own loyalty programs, and they offer the following pricing plans:
Annex Customer Loyalty Cloud offers a number of useful features, including customizable rewards (you can even offer third-party gift cards), integrated social interactions and integrated point redemption at checkout.
This app also makes it easy to measure the performance of your program with analytical tools, such as purchase history data analysis and a comprehensive reporting dashboard.
But Annex Cloud’s pricing is tailored to the needs of each client, so you’ll need to contact them for a quote.
If you’re willing to pay extra for the best loyalty program app that money can buy, then you should strongly consider choosing Lootly. This app offers premium features that just aren’t available with many of your other options, such as API access and a dedicated account manager.
And while Lootly’s plans are a little on the expensive side, you should take into account that they all work for unlimited orders and unlimited customers:
Loyal2 is an excellent option for new and smaller stores, as the app offers most of its features for free. If you have fewer than 500 members, you get access to the loyalty dashboard, members database, transactions database, points register, promotions engine, referrals engine and much more at no cost.
If you have more than 500 members, you’ll need to upgrade to either the Silver plan ($29 per month) or Gold plan ($49 per month), which includes extra features such as text marketing and the ability to embed Loyal2 in your store as a widget.
Loyalty programs are a great way to incentivize customers to return to your store. There's a lot of competition out there, after all, and consumers appreciate retailers that reward their loyalty.
Once you figure out the nuts and bolts of your program, it's worthwhile to invest in the right tools to help you run it. From highly affordable plugins, such as Loyal2 and S Loyalty, to powerful programs for high-traffic stores, such as LoyaltyLion and Lootly, there's something for every BigCommerce store.
Adam Ritchie is a writer based in Silver Spring, Maryland. He writes about ecommerce trends and best practices for Shogun. His previous clients include Groupon, Clutch and New Theory.