Australian consumers don’t just want discounts from their loyalty programs, they are also interested in rewards with social impact according to new research.  

The report For Love or Money 2020 is based on an online survey of more than 1,000 Australians who are members of at least one loyalty program. Now in its 8th year, the research focuses on customer loyalty and Australian loyalty programs.

In 2020, 89 per cent of Austalians were a member of at least one loyalty program and the average number of memberships is 4.4.

The research, commissioned by customer loyalty consultancy The Point of Loyalty, found discounts are still the most popular kind of reward, with 92 per cent said earnings rewards to reduce the cost of everyday living expenses, such as a phone, energy or insurance bills were appealing or very appealing. 

But as the conscious consumer becomes more dominant new forms of rewards schemes are emerging. 

For example, last year Alibaba offered rewards for recycling packages following its massive 11.11 sale. According to the research, 80 per cent of consumers are interested in rewards for recycling, such as donating pre-loved clothes for repurposing/furniture for re-use or recycling. 

Earning rewards for healthy behaviours is also popular with 71 per cent of respondents. For example, the Qantas Wellbeing app offers frequent flyer points for reaching daily or weekly step goals or sleeping well. 

And 62 per cent are interested in earning cashback rewards that are redirected to their superannuation fund to help them save more for their retirement. 

The trend is particularly pronounced among Gen Z, who identified rewards for recycling, healthy behaviours and rewards to boost their superannuation savings, to be more appealing than Gen X, Gen Y and Baby Boomers.

Earning cryptocurrency like bitcoin as a reward was only appealing to 28 per cent of respondents. 

For Love or Money 2020

Report author and CEO of The Point of Loyalty, Adam Posner said it was important for brands to differentiate themselves among a mature loyalty program landscape.

“While members in general want rewards to reduce their cost of living, they are also keen to participate in programs with rewards linked to a greater purpose such as the recycling and healthy behaviours,” Posner said. 

“It’s even more important in the current world situation for loyalty programs to focus on making lives better for their members. It will be remembered.”

Key findings

In 2020, members are concerned with data use and security, for example, knowing how their data is used and how secure it is. 

Half of members (53 per cent) are comfortable sharing their information with loyalty programs to enhance their shopping experience. Almost one in four (24 per cent) feel the collection of personal information by loyalty programs is an invasion of their privacy. 

“While programs are improving all the time, they need to keep an eye on their data practices and the value exchange they offer their members for the data they gain,” Posner said.

The researchers also ranked the Australian loyalty programs most mentioned unprompted by members, as ‘doing a very good job’. 

Four new programs appear in the 2020 ranking – CommBank Rewards, MYER one, Nando’s PERi Perks and Supercheap Auto Club Plus

Top loyalty programs in Australia (unprompted) – ‘doing a very good job’ 

1. Flybuys
2. Woolworths Rewards
3. Qantas Frequent Flyer
4. Virgin Velocity
5. MyDanMurphy’s
6. Priceline Sisterclub
=7. CommBank Rewards (New to ranking)
=7. MYER one (New to ranking)
=7. Nando’s PERi Perks (New to ranking)
=7. Supercheap Auto Club Plus (New to ranking)

For Love or Money 2020
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