Are you loyal to your loyalty cards? | tutor2u Business

How many loyalty cards to you carry? And how many do you actually use?

Sainsbury's Nectar, Tesco's Clubcard, Boots' Advantage card, M&S's Sparks, Morrison's Match and More, and Avios Air Miles can all earn you money off your shopping, special offers, vouchers and any manner of good things, provided that you use them often enough to rack up the points. And, as we all know, the retailers who operate them learn about us and our shopping habits, so that they can appeal to our needs and wants, and keep us as valuable, loyal customers.

That's the theory, anyhow. However, Britain's shoppers are developing a habit of collecting the cards, but not actually showing much loyalty when it comes to using them, according to market research by Nielsen. 89% of us carry loyalty cards (only the Finns carry more) with an average of 3.6 each (I've made a quick check of my wallet - I have rather more than that!) but only half of us actually buy from a particular retailer because we carry their card - and only the Danes register a lower level of loyalty than that. We are more likely to shop around for a good bargain than to default into selecting a retailer because of the points they will give us.

This is probably bad news for the retailers - what's the point of spending money on operating a scheme if it doesn't gain consumers' loyalty, and it doesn't bring much information about their buying habits? Are there any other schemes that students can think of for retailers to gain the advantage of some loyalty, and avoid taking the hit of price-cutting?

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