Retail Loyalty Programs

Strategies to Reward and Retain Customers Through Turbulent Times

Executive Summary

Consumer loyalty continues to wane amid inflation, with price taking precedence over brand for many shoppers. As retailers find it more challenging to acquire new customers, loyalty programs take on greater importance—but brands must put value and ease of use front and center to retain existing customers and boost purchase frequency.

Key Question: How can brands and retailers best meet consumers’ changing expectations for loyalty programs during economic turmoil?

KEY STAT: Discounts are the most sought-after loyalty program benefit among US consumers by a wide margin. Nearly four-fifths of respondents in Merkle’s 2022 Loyalty Barometer Report said they like to receive discounts, an increase of 9 percentage points from the previous year.

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Table of Contents

  1. Executive Summary
  2. The Loyalty Lifeline Supports Both Brands and Consumers
  3. Waning Consumer Loyalty Makes Dedicated Programs an Imperative for Brands and Retailers
  1. The Evolving Landscape of Loyalty
  2. Three Pillars for Boosting Consumer Engagement With Loyalty Programs
  3. Read Next
  1. Sources
  2. Media Gallery

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Sky Canaves


Suzy Davidkhanian
Principal Analyst, Retail & Ecommerce
Carina Perkins
Senior Analyst
Amy Rotondo
Director, US Research