Customer Loyalty Credit cards In Uk Retail Industry Marketing Essay

UK's retail industry is one of the very most organised industries in the world where retailers like Tesco, Draw & Spencer's and Sainsbury are keeping the nice position on the market. The goal of my research project is to analysis the evaluation between the customer commitment programs of in the UK retail industry where almost all of the retailers are trying their best to regulate the maximum show of customer through their devotion program. In UK every shop does or planning to implement an extremely different customer proposal loyalty scheme such that it could get maximize the customer ability through its effective data basic management which keep very much information about the client like customers buying behaviour, income level, spending behaviors, medical spending, and so forth. My research will attempt to determine the question: Will retailer's success is directly related to its successful commitment program implementation? So you can get the best effect for the study a qualitative survey interviews will be taken from 10 -15 worker of different vendors. Record will discuss the research question, literature review and adopted methodology for the research. Collected data would be analysed through SPSS software and the full total research would take around 90 days to complete.

2. Introduction:

Impact of loyalty programs on retailer's business is recognized to be very positive even though some of the very big sellers like Asda are not using these programs on huge scale for getting customer devotion. In retail industry loyalty programs are incredibly popular and most of the big vendors utilize this for increasing the business through customer's loyalty. Commitment programs are part of structured Romance Marketing activities which induces customer towards dedicated buying behaviour and ultimately leads to company's profit. According to advertise research done on customer's devotion patterns, it is hard to get exponential growth by launch of a loyalty system because competitive makes reduces its impact on overall retail industry. In retail industry a rewards credit card, club card, commitment card, or gain card is cards which give the membership to the customer who maintain it. In UK almost all of the merchant are running commitment growth model through loyalty cards for creating more business by knowing customers buying behaviour.

UK is one of the biggest markets in the world for customer loyalty greeting card market where almost every big merchant is operating its loyalty greeting card program. In 1981 Gary Wilson invented the first loyalty card or discount cards which is well known by the name of 'Passcard' and later on it is recognized as Passkey however few people assumed that passcard had not been first discount credit card. In 1982 first loyalty card is started out by one of the leading retail called Sainsbury. In November 1993 boots the chemist retails string first started out the loyalty greeting card system in UK market and later on in 1997 with the investment of 30 million GBP it launched Boots Edge credit card which gout huge success representing another largest retail loyalty scheme in the UK market with around 17 million customers. My research question examination the positive co-relation between the retailer's success and commitment card program.

Most of the retailers are trying to use loyalty card schemes because so many powerful tools for making their business better in this tough economy period. There are whole lot of work have been done which instructs immediate co-relation between commitment cards system and consumer buying behavior but how successful retailers are because of these loyalty programs is not greatly researched yet. One of the prominent shop Asda don't have confidence in investing the money in loyalty scheme rather it choose to provide cheapest product rang to catch the attention of the customer loyalty. On the other hand another big shop Tesco press release said "Double points has inspired more customers to join up; a higher proportion of transactions are actually using a Membership card and 18% more households are redeeming Membership card vouchers than a 12 months ago"(Retail Week, May 2010)

Club credit cards are integral part of some retailer's strategy like Tesco, Sainsbury while sellers like Asda are extending their business very swiftly with devotion programs so my research will analysis the potency of club card techniques on retailer's success. Membership card is plan is very expensive so it's not essential that every retailer is growing only because of the techniques. There are so many loyalty schemes but very little research represented the effectiveness of loyalty program. (Kivetz and Simonson, 2002; Yi and Jeon, 2003)

3. Books Review:

According to Oliver (1997) commitment is "a deeply held dedication to re-buy or re-patronize a preferred product/service consistently in the future, thereby causing recurring same-brand or same-brand-set purchasing despite situational affects and marketing initiatives getting the potential to cause moving over behaviour". Literature on relationship marketing tactics like loyalty cards scheme is split into two categories; one group of researcher assume that loyalty structure have positive influence on customer loyalty and that will cause increased success and earnings of the business. However on the other palm second group of researcher think that loyalty program just a bit influences retailer's income and profitability through customer's commitment. Customers shop from other merchant also where they aren't attaching to any devotion program. These experts believe that customer's behaviour is not afflicted by loyalty strategies rather they shop corresponding to their convenience. Retailer's proper planning is to improve customer loyalty which has positive influence on company development, profits, profitably and culture (Dick & Basin, 1997). Customer Commitment Research Centre (2001) described devotion as "the dedication of customer to a specific brand or company". Most researchers have mentioned the loyalty credit card scheme with respect to consumer commitment.

According to Capizzi and Ferguson (2003) one billion people are attached to any type of loyalty program all over the world. In conditions of loyalty techniques satisfied consumers show more loyalty than that of unsatisfied consumer towards the company (Bailey & Schultz, 2000). Few analysts Grinnell (2003) and O'Brien and Jones (1995) talked about positive effect on customer commitment however some author like Clear and distinct 1997 cannot find the proof an impact on customer commitment of loyalty credit card schemes. Organisation's growth is related to customer loyalty so big stores try to catch the attention of more customer through devotion programs. Tesco since inception of commitment program has spent 150 million through 1% discount to the clients against the point earned. Tesco cases that club credit card has made it no. 1 dealer in the UK since 1995 when it began loyalty program. Relating to Rosenspan (1998) devotion programs don't create customer devotion towards the company's products. Asda also targets discounting on purchasing rather than on devotion programs. Some of the writer argues about "80-20 legislations" but top 20% customers of devotion schemes are not always faithful to the main one company's product alternatively they customers look for cost effective your money can buy with any stores.

Researchers views are extremely divided on commitment programs or customer romantic relationship marketing (CRM) really have an impact on customer commitment so that companies could develop and become more profitable. Based on the Feinberg and Kadam (2002) devotion programs create differentiation one of the retailers alternatively than impacting on customers purchase behavior or satisfaction. On the other hand Seybold (2001) counter these statement by stating that CRM helps companies to improve their income and profitability if indeed they positioned their products relating to customer's need. Very few retailers try to position their products relating to customers' needs rather through loyalty plans they get to know the category smart buying behavior of customer's and by using that data stores launched own top quality products for higher gains. In almost all of the instances impact of commitment programs is assessed post launce of the plans but for knowing the genuine impact of commitment programs there should be an evaluation between pre and post data. According Sharp and Clear, 1997 pre unveiling data of loyalty programs are not available and it can't not be collected after the system kick off. He categorised the customers in two group one band of customer who participated in the loyalty plan called 'treatment group' and another group who didn't participated in the loyalty program named as 'control group'. Relating to him both group must be analysed so you can get the real impact of loyalty programs. The sellers are very smart to invest large amount on these devotion programs Tesco claims that it has more that 14 million productive club card consumer in 2009 2009 after trading GBP 150 million on relaunch of devotion scheme.

Retailers in UK spend huge money for devotion programs but are all the retailers are getting bigger only with these strategies or they are using the customers data for launching their own top quality products for getting higher market show in highest selling categories. Sainsbusry is the only store in UK retail industry which obtained 50 % turnover by adopting the own top quality strategy for increasing the market share and profit. According to O'Brien and Jones (1995) commitment schemes creates the customer commitment if company recognizes how to use and show that knowledge. Experts views are divided on both point positive impact of loyalty program and negative impact of program but more creators are inclined towards positive impact of programs on company's success. Most programs are prepared to increase the duplicate purchase of customers and once the do it again purchase increase merchants get increased turnover through the higher footfalls. Corresponding to Sharp and Sharp (1997) loyalty programs have the capability to affect the replicate purchase routine of the client however the change might be hardly any but only this type of marketing practices which can influence customer duplicate purchase pattern. Through my research question I'd like make a positive co-relation between loyalty programs and customer's devotion in UK retail industry.

4. Research Methodology

According to the Zikmund (1997) research strategy is crucial part of a written report which contain sampling of data, research strategy, hypothesis, research constraints and other different techniques. Based on the literature review impact of commitment programs on customer loyalty and company performance is positive as well as negative hence there are mixed views of different researchers for both arguments. My research is to learn positive connection between devotion program and customer loyalty predicated on two hypotheses-

H1- Retailers which implemented devotion programs performed far better through improving customer's devotion.

H2- Customer loyalty is immediately related to retailer's performance

Research Way -

According to the Lundahl & Skarvad (1999) fundamentally essentially there are two varieties of research strategies - deductive procedure and inductive methodology. A deductive procedure has been determined as quantitative data have to be accumulated through the questionnaires. For my research this approach would serve the purpose. Selected research procedure is helpful to determine the partnership between commitment program and customer commitment. Questionnaire will consist the question related to quantity of cards stores having, advantages of cards, regularity of visit to store, redemption benefit and how dedicated customer is due to loyalty greeting card. These sorts of question will help in finding the relationship between two factors.

Data Collection Methods -

After witnessing the accuracy of the outcome data i've selected quantitative approach to data collection i. e. through questionnaire review. You can find two kinds of data that can be used for research -major data and secondary data. Within my research I'll collect major data through doing questionnaire study. Than when i would look for extra data for finding the books reviews and other data necessary for the analysis like magazines, newspapers, journals, etc.


According to the Chisnall (1992) there are three different kind of questionnaire - personal interviews, self applied given questionnaire and telephonic interviews; but I have selected self- conclusion questionnaire because of its low priced and it gives enough time to act in response. Questionnaire will be sent out through the mail to loyalty credit card holder in the retail industry for learning the key relation. A lot of the question would be close concluded in the survey plus some of the question would be scale based mostly so that i could get some good comparative data within the industry. There are so many factors like price sensitivity, duplicate purchase, devotion, brand commitment so through these questionnaires specific questions would be based on these key points.

Sampling Strategy -

Questionnaire would be sent out to the 400 customers through mail who get excited about the loyalty schemes in order that they could give right reviews. Main notion of the study so to get the positive relation between two variables through analysing the customer view in retail industry. Sampling would be achieved with in UK in different geographical, demographical, age group, gender and income degree of the customers. Study would be send to the clients randomly so that best effect could be discovered. Sampling of the survey can be an important part for this research as most of the research research is based on principal data through survey. Unit of research in this research would be customers who get excited about any of the loyalty scheme in retail industry. I, ll try to focus more on feminine respondents because in the majority of the cases girl do shop for the whole family and they can notify the best view about the client loyalty through devotion programs.

Time Limit -

Overall research will take around 90 days to complete as data has to be collected from key as well as extra resources. Sampling of the questionnaire and getting its opinions will take around 6 to 8 eight weeks while data evaluation and compiling will take remaining time.

Strength and Limitation of the proposed design -

Success rate of the study appears to be very reasonable as there wouldn't normally be problem to find out the respondents within my research. A lot of the UK people is attach to the loyalty techniques in the retail industry and through the questionnaires I'll obtain the expected results. There are extremely less chances to get low responses from the clients because time constraint is not affix with this review and it'll not take too much time to complete the study. Supplementary data is another important source for getting the key data so that a genuine romantic relationship could be find out between your commitment programs and customer loyalty in the industry. The study design is having yet another durability i. e. low priced put on it for executing and developing it.

There are so much research have been done related to customer loyalty and customer romantic relationship marketing but there may be less literature on loyalty programs and customer commitment relationship. Althouth devotion programs are the part of customer marriage marketing (CRM) and i used those resources as supplementary data. Due to time frame random sampling has been determined but some of the respondents might not have experienced the loyalty plans so results may involve some limitation in terms of accuracy and reliability but it'll not affect the final results of the study.

5. Analysis and Interpretation

I took the quantitative methods of data collection through home implemented questionnaire and the objective the questionnaire study is to recognise the factors which affect the customer loyalty regarding loyalty programs in retail industry. The first part of the questionnaire would gather the personal information about the client where as the second part would collect the information about repeat purchase through devotion programs. The collected data through questionnaire would be analysed through the SPSS software gives the accurate evaluation. The gathered data would be analysed by some quantitative methods like regression, co-relation evaluation and hypothesis test.

The gathered quantitative data would be reviewed for reliability based on the Cronbach's alpha prices where 0. 7 or more values will be the most appropriate value of Cronbach's alpha which displays the internal reliability of quantitative data. Alpha can take positive as well as negative prices but only positive principles (less than or equal to 1) would have the significance. This is actually the widely used method for score. We have to analyse the relationship between two variables so we'll use the co-relation research to analyse the linear romance. Pearson product-moment relationship coefficient 'r' given by Karl Pearson evaluates the partnership between two factors. If the worthiness of coefficient can be -1 or +1 if the variables reflect very strong relationship, if the worthiness of coefficient is among -1 and +1 relationship is less strong favorably and negatively but if the value is near to zero than relationship is very weakened. Co-relation between commitment programs and customer commitment would be analysed.

Regression evaluation is the statistical tools to examine the relationship between a based mostly and 1 or more independent variables and Probability circulation can also be used because of this analysis. Regression evaluation specifically tells the way the value of an dependent varying varies when value of 1 independent parameters changes while other independent variables are constant. Regression evaluation is useful to determine the effect of every independent changing on the partnership. Regression evaluation will notify the how customer devotion gets affect by the various actor of loyalty programs run by the merchants. It will also notify which factors of commitment programs influence the customers repeat purchase pattern to the bigger extent. History of regression started out with method of least squares analysed by Legendre in 1805 however now there are three sorts of regression analysis - Basic multiple regression, Linear regression and stepwise multiple regression. The most widely used analysis is Standard multiple regression examination which uses all the self-employed variable to form one linear equation. Minimun variety of sample size is required for the regression research which size can be 50 or even more. I have considered a great number of sample sizes so that the analysis of the data could give authentic and correct results.

Significance level or impartial test would be utilized for hypothesis testing. There are so many factors which affect the customer repeat purchase structure through loyalty programs and become the base for customer commitment. Co-relation and regression analysis will be done to evaluation the positive romantic relationship between the variables in line with the research question.

6. Ethical issues -

Data collection is very tiresome task in terms of moral issues related to it. There may be following issues which can directly relate to the study.

Privacy and Confidentiality - Most of the customers needs their information related to their career as well as personal must be retained secret. During the research this matter could be completed by giving guarantee to the clients that your information will be kept only for the research goal. There are so many software like survey monkey which may be used for keeping the confidentiality of the customer's information.

Integrity- Your recognition must be disclosed to the customers in order that they could readily answer the questionnaire as well as there should not be anything which may demolish the dignity or researcher. There would be some questions based on the customer's income level which would be immediate question so customer might wait in answering them. Through the Overall research only these issues might come up as almost all of the research predicated on the customer commitment and customer do it again purchase.

7. Reflections -

The overall research is dependant on finding out the positive relation between retailer's devotion programs and customer loyalty which effect the retailer's business growth and profitability. The research is organized to get the info from 400 customers who are involved in any kind of loyalty structure through questionnaire study in the store industry. Business university resources would be used for conducting the study and the collected data would be analysed through SPSS software. I, m planning on 60-70% reply of my study questionnaire which I'll send to the clients in the town and in college or university campus also. Research would need a proper time management as the whole research have to be effectively complete in 8-10 weeks. You can find pursuing resources would be require for the research such as a computer/laptop, usage of library or repository, data source from the industry or company and a supervisor to steer in research. Business university has recently organised working out session for the program learning and other required resources for the study so would be sufficient for the study.

Customers respond to the questionnaire might be low in that case supplementary data would be utilized for analysis of the study plus some time customer might give some incorrect information in the study which can jeopardised the study objective. Connection with the supervisor would give the guideline for the study in prepared manner and constant feedback will give right corrective solution for the research. Research could become more expanded as own brand play an important role in the repeat purchase style of the customer's behaviour. The majority of retailer's devotion programs are made to gather info for own brand placement and based on the time frame i could add this in my research. Proposed research is very practical and will contribute in retail industry for building the relationship between loyalty programs and customer's loyalty. The research will also provide the evaluation for the customers of loyalty programs and how they impact the performance of the company.

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