There are a variety of new tools and solutions available to help small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) better keep pace with their larger counterparts. Rather than falling behind, SMBs can use these tools to provide compelling loyalty programs and mobile experiences that drive foot traffic, engagement and revenue.
The Fleurty Ginger Boutique, a Louisiana-based retailer, has been able to generate awareness and turn one-time shoppers into valuable clients by creating a mobile app powered by Como. Since rolling out the mobile app in November 2013, the retailer has increased online sales by 16% and online traffic by 23%.
“We wanted a way to engage customers more,” said Russell White, Social Media Manager for the Fleurty Ginger Boutique. “And although we used Facebook, we have been posting to less and less customers and Facebook is charging more money for advertising. We just wanted to get people to communicate with us more.”
The Fleurty Ginger Boutique business began in August 2013, when owner Christy White started to sell plus-sized apparel on Facebook. A year later, White began using a truck to sell apparel to local customers at their homes, events and private offices.
In addition to using Facebook to blast details on where the truck was heading, the Fleurty Ginger Boutique rolled out its mobile app to keep customers informed. This engagement continued as the Fleurty Ginger Boutique opened its own branded storefront in 2014.
Mobile Becomes A Loyalty Connection
The mobile app plays a key role in the Fleurty Ginger Boutique’s loyalty program. Rather than having printed punch cards or plastic key fobs, the retailer created a mobile-based program and uses the app to “send notifications and communicate with customers if there is a sale,” White explained. “We also send notifications periodically if there is new spring merchandise, for example, or a new line of women’s pants.”
In-store traffic increases by 17% when the retailer adds coupons to the app, which uses notifications to inform customers of the coupons. Customers who have a mobile loyalty club account also return to the store within one week 29% of the time and within two weeks 48% of the time.
Although the loyalty card and push notification features are extremely popular, consumers also use the app to access the Fleurty Ginger Boutique Facebook page, so they can easily access the account and post comments, White noted. A coupons section provides anytime, anywhere access to top deals, and is extremely popular during the holiday season.
“For example, we had a ’12 Days Of Christmas’ campaign,” White noted, “and the coupons aligned with push notifications and items shared on Facebook.”
To promote the app, the Fleurty Ginger Boutique takes a multichannel approach. Consumers in the store are educated about the app while they are shopping, and associates walk shoppers through the experience of creating a loyalty club account. The retailer also advertises through the local radio station to drive downloads.