Point programs: What are they and how can they benefit my business?

By Karen Inman on September 21, 2011

Point programs (also known as loyalty or incentive programs) are a great way to motivate and reward employees, customers, and clients through an e-commerce point system.

They are often used in conjunction with promotional product & incentive businesses to allow companies to enhance existing programs, such as safety incentive programs for employees, sales incentive programs, customer incentive programs, program budgets for strategic offices regions, and loyalty rewards.

Here are a few examples of how you might use incentive programs with an ecommerce point system:

  • Budget Management Programs – Companies with separate office locations can easily track and maintain budget amounts for each office by allocating points for purchases of sample products, company apparel, printed marketing material, and office supplies
  • Sales Programs – Increase market share by rewarding your performers and achievers, and stir under-achievers to dig deeper, by offering a rewards store. Based on points earned when achieving goals, an employee can shop a store of pre-approved prizes with their points.
  • Safety Programs – Reduce Workers’ Comp expenses. The average employee accident represents $25,000-30,000 expense to an employer. Use an ecommerce store with preloaded product that employee can purchase prizes with their points that they’ve earned individually and as a team.
  • Attendance Programs – Absenteeism increases accidents and reduces productivity. For example, when one person misses work, someone has to cover an area with which they are familiar, increasing the probability of accidents.Absenteeism also leads to overtime hours for other employees in order to meet deadlines, etc. which in turn reduces profits.You can use an online store with products to reward employees who accrue attendance points, such as holiday gifts or personal electronics.
  • Service Awards – The Federal government allows for service awards to be given “tax free” to employees every 5 years. Allowing participants to choose their own award has proven to be much more effective than a simple “cash” reward.
  • Employee Anniversary/Birthday Programs – Retain employees for service well done by awarding them points for years of service and personal occasions, such as birthdays and work accomplishments.
  • Incentive/Recognition Programs for Clients– Improve customer loyalty by awarding them with points to redeem for merchandise of their choice. For example, “spend X amount of dollars and receive X points off your next order”, or “earn X points and receive 2 nights at X resort”, etc.
  • Uniform Budgets – Track uniform and equipment budgets and make sure the budget allocation is spent as intended. ie:  Safety footwear, uniform shirts, hats, etc.For example, each employee can be assigned a certain amount of initial points to purchase their items from your internal ecommerce marketplace. You can allow them to purchase additional items using their own credit card if their point limit has been reached.

CoreXpand’s ACE (Adaptable Commerce Engine) system gives you the ability to create and design any type of point program or loyalty program you need.

Here are 3 types of functionality within the CoreXpand system you can use to create your own program:

  1. The Basic points program: Points are awarded in program(s) and added to a “bucket”. Points are added together and the balance goes down as orders are placed. Points are spent in the order they are awarded or if using expiration dates, points that expire sooner are spent first.
  2. Point by program: Point programs are set up and the users belonging to those programs are added to them and awarded points. Upon checkout, the user can select in a drop-down, which program they want to spend points from. This makes tracking of the individual program expenditures possible.*
  3. Point by Category: With this feature, programs are created that have the same name as the categories. Then, the products are assigned to the point program and category. The users are assigned to the programs and awarded points, as usual.

As items are purchased, the points are decremented according to the program to which the item is assigned. Example: A user has 1 point to spend for electronics and 1 point to spend for jewelry. They cannot use electronics points to pay for jewelry or vice versa.*

 

*Please note that this is a premium feature that can be added quickly, easily and affordably. Contact helpme@corexpand.com for pricing, and help with setup and activation.

[Editor’s Note: If you’re looking to implement a point program into your business, save yourself time, money, and headaches by talking with one of our ecommerce experts first.  One thing we’ve learned from helping thousands of businesses… sometimes a simple conversation is all it takes to find the perfect solution… no matter how complex your situation.

Also, if you found this blog post helpful, be sure to subscribe to our newsletter on the right side of this page. You’ll receive regular insights into e-commerce strategies – including access to parts 2 and 3 of this points program series coming over the next couple weeks. ]

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Posted in B2B eCommerce for Sellers, CoreXpand Solution Tips, Tips & Tricks