For the last few years, the UK has been experiencing a time of economic uncertainty; whilst the pound has endured, rates of pay have remained relatively flat, interest rates have risen for the first time in 10 years and consumer finances are being squeezed by inflation and an ever increasing cost of living. Add to this a flat housing market and it comes as no surprise that the entire retail sector has seen an extended period of decline with a number of well-known brands resorting to CVAs and, in some cases, disappearing from the retail landscape altogether.
One area to have seen increasingly poor results is the DIY sector. Mintel’s 2018 UK Retail Market report revealed a 2.1% decline in sales in the year to April of that year. Household names, such as B&Q, Wickes and Homebase remain the biggest players in this sector, with B&Q maintaining a 47% share. However, the economic uncertainty suffered by the UK and the resulting performance of the housing market has unduly impacted these companies’ ability to grow. Unsurprisingly, an increasing number of renters, particularly amongst the younger generation, has lead to a decline in home improvement projects - the backbone to the DIY sector.
It is this decline that means the industry is in desperate need of reviewing how it attracts new customers. Increasing the number of people through the door, however, is just the first step. Maintaining loyalty, particularly among trade customers is key to reversing any future decline. According to a 2018 Customer Loyalty Report by DMA, the appetite for point-based reward schemes is losing its appeal with 23% of people preferring another option. For example, 71% of customers would rather receive a gift or reward as a thank you for their loyalty. In addition, many long term customers do not feel like their loyalty is valued with some believing new customers are rewarded disproportionately.
So, how can the industry revolutionise its reward and loyalty offerings? How do you develop a scheme that rewards both DIY-ers and trade customers?
Blackhawk Network can offer your company a number of unique solutions. Via our Select platform, you can reward customers with an instantly redeemable online code for a gift card, voucher or digital reward. Easy and cost effective to implement, codes can be individually personalised or campaigns tailored for a particular group. Alternatively, you could use Hawk Redeem, an easy-to use platform, where customers can claim their reward through an incentive or promotional campaign e.g. ‘do this, get that’ style. Like Hawk Select, this is branded to your company or an individual programme identity.
We are currently helping a number of leading trade companies with in-store incentives and customer loyalty programmes; if you’d like to find out more about Blackhawk Network and how we could help you, please fill out the contact form on this page or give one of our team a call on 0207 419 8191.