August 14 2023

3 minutes of reading

Loyalized, but are they loyal? The “Loyalty Programs, Incentives, and Sales Support in 2023” report.


Daniel Bagiński

Loyalty programs have gained popularity in the Polish market.

There are those who wholeheartedly believe in loyalty programs, and as their avid fans, they only make purchases using the programs and benefits they offer, actually planning their needs and expenses around brand marketing activities. There are also those who tend to forget about them on a daily basis, but still take advantage of the dedicated benefits for loyal customers when they can gain something extra. However, there’s no denying that loyalty programs are very popular in our country and have become a permanent part of Polish consumers’ awareness.

According to the “Loyalty Programs, Incentives, and Sales Support 2023” published by Marketer+, approximately 62% of Poles use at least one loyalty program, and this number is constantly growing. Although the percentage of loyalty program participants practically remains unchanged, consumer activity within these programs continues to rise.

Increase in the activity of loyalty program participants.

The study by Monitor Programów Lojalnościowych 2022 ARC Rynek i Opinia shows that loyalty programs are more popular among women, whose share is 64%, compared to 59% among men. Interestingly, the most popular loyalty program in Poland is the one run by the Biedronka chain. The success of the “Moja Biedronka” program may result from some really attractive discounts that their customers get when purchasing their products; a legit and tangible benefit for everyday shoppers. Thanks to its numerous locations, Biedronka is a very accessible store, and its target group, i.e. virtually every Pole, is very sensitive to promotions and price reductions.

Loyalty programs also have some drawbacks. The main one is the low value of collected points, which negatively affects the perception of the programs by the participants. Belated benefits are demotivating, and yet, over the last few years, Poles have shown greater commitment and a more friendly attitude to loyalty programs. The majority of participants report that they keep track of their status in their program and actively take advantage of offers, including discounts and rewards. An important factor that has an impact on this change may be the growing popularity of loyalty programs run as mobile apps that allow easy access to benefits and rewards directly at the checkout.

Changing saving preferences among consumers.

Recently, we have also observed changing consumer preferences regarding saving. Ubiquitous high prices are making Poles look for ways to reduce costs. As a result, money-saving programs and solutions are gaining in popularity. Customers are reluctant to give up their current lifestyle and naturally, when faced with higher prices, they actively look for places where they can buy the same products and services cheaper.

The Radar Konsumencki, ARC Rynek i Opinia survey from March 2023 shows that Poles are well aware that the quality of their lives has deteriorated compared to the previous period. At the same time, however, the rate of consumer optimism is systematically increasing. What this basically means is that despite the economic difficulties, consumers are still willing to make bigger purchases, although both indicators are negative for now.

Differences in loyalty preferences depending on the product category.

If you analyze loyalty preferences of Poles, you may notice that they differ depending on the product category, age, and education. An interesting fact is that gas stations currently enjoy the highest customer loyalty, with customers returning to their favorite chain regardless of the attractiveness of competitors’ offers. On the other hand, clothing brands face the greatest challenges in building loyalty. Only 5% of respondents declare loyalty to one clothing brand, while 37% claim that they have more than three favorite brands.

Challenges and the future of loyalty programs in Poland.

Loyalty programs in Poland play a crucial role in building bonds between consumers and brands. Despite some disadvantages, Poles are using these programs more and more actively because they appreciate the possibility of saving money and attractive offers. The increase in prices and the need to reduce costs encourage consumers to look for places where they can buy the same thing, but cheaper.

To keep up with changing consumer preferences, needs and expectations, companies must make their programs a lot more personalized. What’s more, customers expect honesty and transparency in the way loyalty programs are run. Therefore, brands need to make sure that the terms of the programs are clearly defined and leave no room for various interpretations.

Another important thing is the use of new technologies. Loyalty programs in mobile apps, which provide consumers with easier access to benefits and rewards, have gained popularity. Thanks to them, brands can provide users with convenient and quick access to information about their status in the program, special offers and rewards.

Is it worth investing in loyalty programs?

The future of loyalty programs in Poland looks really bright. Consumers are enjoying their benefits more and more, especially in the context of saving money. Those companies that will be able to create innovative programs have a chance to win customer loyalty and stand out in the competitive market. Skillful customization to the needs and expectations of customers, care for honesty and transparency as well as the use of new technologies open up prospects for development and success in this field. Companies need to create more personalized programs that are clearly defined and easily accessible through mobile applications.

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