Understanding Retail & Lifestyle – New Statistics From GCLR 2024

Explore the statistics behind lifestyle and retail loyalty programs in this insightful article, featuring data from Antavo’s GCLR 2024.

Cover for Antavo’s article about the GCLR 2024 industry statistics.

Ever since the launch of our annual Global Customer Loyalty Report series, the industry has shown huge interest. This was largely because it is the only loyalty report that analyzes trends through the lens of existing (and future) loyalty program owners. The 2024 edition has been especially well-received: 1,500 industry professionals signed up for our launch webinar, and the report is now in the hands of over 5,000 loyalty experts and C-level decision-makers. 

Following this incredible reception, we decided to dig deeper into the numbers presented in the Global Customer Loyalty Report 2024 (GCLR 2024) in search of more trends. This article reveals our findings, showing how lifestyle and retail-adjacent industries are faring compared to the global results. 

If you haven’t already, download the original GCLR 2024 for additional insights about premium loyalty programs, reward program benchmarks and ROI statistics!

A banner recommending to download Antavo’s Global Customer Loyalty Report 2024.

The Methodology Behind the New GCLR 2024 Statistics

Launched in January 2024, Antavo’s Global Customer Loyalty Report 2024 was based on three sources: 

  1. A survey completed by 600 corporate survey respondents from all regions of the world
  2. The analysis of more than 30.5 million member actions tracked via Antavo’s Loyalty Management system 
  3. 1,200 minutes of interviews with renowned industry experts in customer loyalty

The original report was industry agnostic, meaning that all of the statistics came from a global pool of 10 distinct industry sectors (plus an “other” option), and was meant to characterize loyalty program trends overall. However, since the launch, we further analyzed the 600 corporate survey responses and identified several key trends in two industry verticals: 

  • Retail, which goes beyond brick-and-mortar and includes other high-footfall industries, like consumer goods and groceries
  • Lifestyle brands, including fashion, beauty and healthcare companies

The results shared in this article are exclusive; you won’t find them in the original report. Nonetheless, they provide a valuable perspective on how retail and lifestyle brands differ from the global average.

For a comprehensive overview of key trends from the GCLR 2024 (by the top experts who contributed to it), check out our launch webinar!

1. How Do Loyalty Programs Perform in Retail & Lifestyle

There are two easy ways to review whether a loyalty program performs well: by examining the reward redemption rate or ROI. The former shows how healthy the program is because the more rewards are redeemed, the higher the rate of active, engaged members. ROI, on the other hand, shows how viable the rewards program is financially. 

Reward Redemption Rate

In terms of engagement, the retail sector performs well above the global average (55.5% compared to 49.8%). In other words, retail loyalty program members use their points and benefits more actively. However, the reverse applies to fashion (36.8% compared to 48.8%). One possible reason for this drop is that fashion and beauty loyalty programs tend to focus more on high-end benefits and experiential rewards, which require longer commitment and are redeemed less frequently than simple coupons. 

ROI

Antavo’s annual survey includes a recurring question about whether loyalty program owners measure a positive ROI for their reward program. In this sense, both retail and lifestyle loyalty programs fall behind the global average. Lifestyle lags by a paper-thin margin 88.9% vs 89.6%), while there is a significantly bigger gap for retail loyalty programs (75% vs 89.6%). Nonetheless, it’s still worth highlighting that the large majority of loyalty programs in both verticals have a positive ROI.

Retail and lifestyle loyalty programs’ performance regarding ROI and Redemption Rates
One possible reason why lifestyle loyalty programs are more likely to have a positive ROI is that, in this sector, emotional loyalty elements are more common. 

2. The Impact of Retail & Lifestyle Loyalty Programs

The next important question is, how do retail and lifestyle brands judge their loyalty programs? Are they satisfied with them? Are they moving the right KPIs? After all, reward programs can drive value in a variety of ways, for example, by successfully shaping customer behavior, building a community, or fostering brand advocacy.

Satisfaction With the Loyalty Program

The percentage of companies satisfied with their loyalty programs in both verticals aligns closely with the global average. Although retailers are slightly less satisfied (53.1% vs 55.8%), lifestyle brands manage to pull ahead by a significant margin (59.5% vs 55.8%). This shows that, in the eyes of their owners, lifestyle loyalty programs perform more favorably. 

Loyalty Programs That Proved Helpful

In the survey for the 2024 report, participants were asked whether their loyalty program was helpful in one way or another during the economic downturn. The answer from the 10 available industry sectors was 81.4% positive. In comparison, both lifestyle and retail loyalty programs rank lower. Again, lifestyle reward programs trail most closely to the global average (78.6%). Retail loyalty programs, however, fall short by a larger degree (75.1%). 

The impact of retail and lifestyle loyalty programs according to program owners
Despite scoring slightly lower than the global average, both analyzed industry sectors performed admirably, which shows that loyalty initiatives are effective within these industries—companies just need to find the winning formula.

3. Investing in Lifestyle & Retail Loyalty Programs

The last topic of our analysis was the future of loyalty programs in these two verticals. How do the owners of retail and lifestyle loyalty programs keep their programs fresh? Do they wish to invest more in keeping them fresh? Do they wish to change the concept or technology behind them to stay up-to-date? 

Intention to Invest in Retention

In the original industry-agnostic report, 67% of companies claimed that they wish to invest more of their budget into customer retention activities (like loyalty programs). This trend was closely mirrored in both verticals: the rate is almost the same for retail loyalty programs (65.9%), while the global average was succeeded by lifestyle reward programs (70.2%). The results clearly prove that companies take customer retention very seriously, no matter what industry they are in.

Intention to Revamp or Replatform the Loyalty Program

In the world of loyalty programs, revamping refers to updating a loyalty program’s concept, strategy or features, while replatforming involves switching to a different technology. In this area, both lifestyle and retail loyalty programs show less propensity to revamp or platform compared to the global average. For the lifestyle vertical it’s 62.5% vs 72.8%, while for retail 56.7% vs 72.8%. One possible explanation for this downward trend is that loyalty program owners have either made recent changes to their program or wish to wait longer until making the commitment to upgrade. 

Companies are determined to keep investing in their loyalty programs
Upgrading a loyalty program is a serious decision and a long-term commitment that companies don’t take lightly.

Get Ready to Tap Into Your Market’s True Potential

These additional statistics hopefully helped you expand your horizons and better understand the performance, impact, and investment trends for your vertical. If you would like to find out more about the key challenges and future trends predicted for loyalty programs in general or hear what loyalty experts across the world think about the trends, download the full report.

Are you inspired to put your newfound knowledge into action? Our loyalty experts are more than happy to strike up a conversation with you about the loyalty capabilities that will make your reward program truly shine. All you have to do is send us an RFP or book a demo.

A banner recommending to download Antavo’s Global Customer Loyalty Report 2024.
Headshot of Zsuzsa Kecsmar, Co-founder, CMO and Head of Partnerships at Antavo

Zsuzsa Kecsmar

Zsuzsa is the Chief Strategy Officer & Co-founder of Antavo. She has experienced Antavo grow from a startup into a scaleup. Listed by Forbes as one of Europe’s top 100 female founders in tech, Zsuzsa is a former journalist recognized by the European Commission.

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