Mobile payment technology is one of the biggest trends to have impacted brick-and-mortar business in recent years.
According to eMarketer , 34.9% of smartphone users above the age of 14 will use their device to pay for goods and services at the point of sale (POS) at least once every six months. Proximity payments will reel in 831.4 million users in 2018 alone, but that figure is expected to rise to 1.1 billion by 2021.
For an example of just how popular mobile payment technology can be, look no further than the situation at Starbucks . Uptake for payment via the coffee chain’s dedicated mobile app is beating off competition from Apple and Android Pay, with 23.4 million users purchasing items through the method at least once every six months.
But for Starbucks and other customer-centric hospitality businesses, increasing mobile payments is not the sole objective, but a piece in a wider omnichannel engagement play.
Starbucks uses a seamless integration between payments and its loyalty program, allowing app users to collect points, get rewards and redeem gifts when they pay with their app. In practice, the payment triggers a post-purchase conversation that allows customers to further engage with the brand and helps stimulate their next transaction.
Whenever a customer buys something or has a good experience, the business they’re purchasing from should be encouraging their further engagement. After paying via mobile or a similar means, the big enabler for continuous customer engagement is a comprehensive customer engagement solution that is integrated with all customer touchpoints, both in store (POS) and online (web, app, email).
For businesses who have the capability of engaging with customers through mobile payment technology, here are five strategies worth exploring:
1. Immediate follow-ups to encourage further purchases
When a customer buys something, the business should already have an automated plan in place for encouraging their next visit. Sending a basic message saying “Thanks for purchasing – here’s a $5 voucher for making another one”, or “Here’s 25% off your next” via mobile payment technology like mobile apps can demonstrate to the customer that they’re appreciated and keep the conversation flowing.
There’s the opportunity to go a step further by utilizing data-driven insights and delivering personalized recommendations that are based on customer behavior and prediction models. This is an effective strategy used by online giants like Amazon to boost sales and nurture loyalty.
2. Renew the appetite for points
Many businesses are opting for the strategy of allowing their customers to collect points, which eventually get turned into gifts, coupons and other incentives. After making a purchase, mobile payment technology encourages each customer to keep going and reflect how further visits could benefit their points tally.
Messages like “You’re almost there… See what’s waiting for you”, followed by a link to the Point Shop or similar can give them a glimpse of what to expect when they keep racking up their visits. Personalized messages like “X more points would get you a free Y” can also be effective in driving further sales.
For those who remain close to a milestone but haven’t collected any points for a long time, why not re-engage them by offering some bonus points for the next purchase?
Last year, there were an estimated 3.8 billion active loyalty program memberships in the US alone . It’s easy for customers to forget the stages they’re at with each business, which is where personalized reminders across different channels (push notifications, SMS, emails etc.) are extremely important for cutting through the noise.
3. Reel them back in with friends
Word of mouth can be a powerful tool for any business, especially those within hospitality and retail. Once a customer has made a purchase and had a good experience, that might be the perfect time to ask them to recommend your place to their friends.
You never know – a discount or incentive for a group booking or purchase could be the extra touch that makes this offer attractive.
4. Ask for ratings
Don’t miss the chance to get feedback – catch members when they’re most satisfied, right after they redeem a gift or use a discount, by sending an automated push notification suggesting they rate your app on the App Store or Google Play. Alternatively, they could be asked to leave a review on a user review platform that is relevant to your business.
Another way of gaining feedback is through a satisfaction survey, which can reveal some of the bits that people really value about your brand, as well as well as highlighting an opportunity for improvements. As an extra tip, when you’re asking for a moment of their time, offering a small benefit they can use in their next purchase might bridge the gap between a good experience and the next one.
5. Harness the power of social sharing
Social media is a huge amplifier of word of mouth. Your customers should be encouraged to share their experiences, purchases and related photos via social media to give your brand an online push.
Try requesting social shares from the people that buy with you on a regular basis. That way you’re turning satisfied customers into fully-fledged brand ambassadors.
As you might have gathered, in a business that is focused on customer engagement, completing one transaction with mobile payment technology can provide the gateway to a relationship with the customer which, if nurtured correctly, has the potential to live for as long as the business itself
Through customer engagement platforms like, Como Sense, and proper utilization of customer data across all touch points, before, during and after purchase, a business can achieve the holy grail – loyal customers.
Como Sense is a customer management platform that uses mobile payment technology to further engage and create positive customer experiences for mobile users. By integrating with your POS system, Como extracts valuable consumer data which can be used to deliver personalized offers and relevant content for omnichannel engagement and brand loyalty.
Como users can also easily create and management custom mobile apps for increasing brand loyalty and providing customer the tools they need to stay connected to brands.
Looking to create or integrate a mobile application to engage and retain loyal customer?
Request a demo with a Como experts to learn how you can get customers to keep coming back.
Liran heads Como’s Product and R&D divisions, responsible for developing the product strategy and roadmap, and overseeing all aspects of research, development, business intelligence, and innovation.