The majority of UAE shoppers do not feel attached to the retail brands they shop from most due to lack of reward programmes, according to research by global loyalty marketing agency ICLP.
Just 29% of UAE customers said they feel their loyalty is being rewarded by their favourite retailer, while 36% said they felt appreciated if they were a regular customer.
A lower 24% said they were rewarded with offers that were tailored to their likes and dislikes, and just 23% felt they got something back in exchange for sharing their personal data with the brand.
Furthermore, over half (53%) of UAE shoppers say they recommend their chosen brand to their friends and family, but just 24% said they were rewarded if they did so.
In the survey, ICLP applied Sternberg’s Triangular Theory of Love to the relationship between shoppers and brands, and defined the ideal, or ‘devoted’ relationship, as one where shoppers feel passion, intimacy, and commitment to the brand.
The most dominant form of relationship that consumers had with brands in the UAE is casual (24%) followed by romantic (22%). Casual relationships demonstrate very low levels of passion, intimacy and commitment, whilst romantic relationships are characterised by high levels of passion and intimacy, but no commitment.
ICLP general manager Sanjit Gill said investing in loyalty programmes would enable retailers to drive devotion amongst their customers.
“Evidently, retailers across the UAE are failing to hit the mark when it comes to recognising and rewarding their customers’ loyalty. There is a huge opportunity on offer in UAE for the retailers that get this approach right, and show that they recognise their customers, and can reward them for their custom and loyalty,” he said.
The survey showed Apparel Group’s Club Apparel program was is performing most strongly in the eyes of UAE shoppers when it comes to rewarding customer loyalty, as 50% of those surveyed said they felt value while 30% said they felt recognised as long-standing customers.
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