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Simplify Retention With Shopify Flow Automations And Loyalty


We’ve entered a new age of ecommerce. It’s becoming increasingly costly to acquire new customers, and this investment might not even be necessary. Our research shows that retained customers are worth more to you than new shoppers. In fact, a loyal customer and an advocate is 47% more likely to repeat a purchase and has a 28% higher purchase frequency.

Customer loyalty and retention are the new key drivers for growth. That’s why we teamed up with Shopify Plus to help you grow your brand more easily  than ever before with tools like Shopify Flow.

What is Shopify Flow?

Shopify Flow is one of Shopify Plus’s exclusive features! The ecommerce automation platform helps you create custom workflows that will automate tasks, campaigns and processes. 

Your loyalty program must be just as unique as your customers and brand. With Shopify Flow’s flexible set-up, you’re free to create unique goal-driven workflows within your store and across apps, such as LoyaltyLion. To do that, you add a trigger, condition, and action, automating your loyalty and retention processes. 

For example, loyalty workflows can help you to reward your customers based on their spending and activity in your store. With Flow connectors you can thank your shoppers for their support by giving them loyalty points at the point of check-out, for writing a positive review, or surprising them on their birthday.

Shopify Flow automations: Workflow example

Shopify Flow also helps you enroll more customers into your loyalty program, increasing their engagement and limiting churn, all in a smooth and automated way. 

The result? You can deploy an advanced loyalty program that is aligned with your brand and your customers without adding more tasks to your day-to-day workload. Hurrah!

Shopify Ebook high resolution

What does this look like in practice? 

1. Move customers from tier to tier

Use customer information such as zip code, order size or lifetime spend as triggers to enable a customer to become tagged. When shoppers are tagged correctly, our conditional tier feature will automatically move them from tier to tier.

Conditional tiers are an exclusive type of loyalty tier that can only be accessed by customers with a specific Shopify tag. They’re a great way to split your customers into groups and create relevant rules and rewards for each segment. 

This allows you to move customers between tiers and reward them differently based on any number of factors, from spend to location to frequency of purchase. This system creates a personal experience for your most loyal customers, with no additional time sink for yourself. 

By building these customizable tiers you can create VIP experiences and perks for your shoppers that will prevent and even reverse churn! For example, Sephora uses loyalty tiers to give shoppers access to a wide range of benefits based on their spend per calendar year:

  • Insider: Birthday gift and free beauty classes
  • VIB: Monthly gifts and free custom makeover
  • Rouge: Free flash 2-day shipping, a private hotline, and exclusive invitations
Sephora Vib Loyalty Program Example With Loyalty Tiers

This keeps customers engaged for longer as they have a clear goal to aim for and they can see additional benefits to staying signed up. 

2. Catch at-risk customers before they churn

Customers can also be tagged according to the recency and frequency of their last activity. Use Flow to identify customers who are ‘at-risk’ because they haven’t visited your store within the expected time frame.

Shopify Flow automations: Catch at-risk customers

Once identified, use an automated action to let them know that you miss them, such as adding points into their account, increasing the likelihood that they’ll return to make their next purchase. 

This means you’ll catch customers before they churn, re-engaging those that already know and trust your brand, and showing them that you use their data responsibly and for their benefit. Fewer customers churning? Fewer customers you need to add back into the top of your sales funnel.

3. Never miss a birthday again

Collect customer birthdays and use that information to trigger a workflow that sends your shopper a surprise birthday treat. You can configure this in any way you like. For example, set this up so a treat arrives in their inbox on the day or a week before their birthday. Choose to limit free gifts to just those in your VIP tier, or spread birthday joy further afield. 

Celebrating every customer’s birthday without automation would be a fool’s errand. However, with a birthday flow you can make every single shopper feel special, rewarded and recognized, vastly increasing the chances that they’ll return to shop with you again, and remain opted in to hear from you. 

People who sign up for a loyalty program feel more appreciated. In fact, 76% of people believe that a loyalty program can deepen their relationship with a brand. One of the benefits of a loyalty program is that it gives you a way to surprise and delight your customers. 

For example, Harney and Sons, an American tea company, give their shoppers 300 bonus points for their birthdays and collect the information using a special pop-up onsite. 

Harney and sons loyalty program birthday pop up

4. Say goodbye to guest checkouts

Take action to prevent customers checking out as guests. Use the Flow action ‘customer checks out as a guest’ to trigger an automated message from your ESP or SMS platform, highlighting to the customer that there are points waiting for them if they return and create an account. 

Customers who checkout as guests remain anonymous. You should be taking every opportunity to remind your incognito customers that they’re missing out if they don’t sign up to your program. This will encourage more customers to create an account and open up communication with you. By reducing anonymity you’ll have more opportunities to build strong customer relationships and drive repeat purchases.

5. Points for purchase milestones 

Give your customers a virtual high five when they reach a purchase milestone using Flow to automatically award them some bonus points. For example, once Wendy reaches purchase number five, credit her with 500 additional points to make her day. You can even trigger a message via your ESP or SMS platform to let them know that they’ve got new points to come back and spend. 

The more a customer shops with your brand, the more they deserve to be recognized and rewarded, but communicating those rewards in a timely way is key. Automated bonus points with corresponding emails are highly effective in reducing the time to a customer’s next purchase, as they are left excited to return and redeem their unexpected points. 

These examples of how to create memorable loyalty experiences using Shopify Flow are just the tip of the iceberg. In reality, the options are endless! The automations available make this an exciting feature ready to be explored.

To read more about what you can achieve with Shopify Plus and LoyaltyLion, check out our blog post on using Shopify Scripts alongside your loyalty program. Or download our expert guide, The ultimate guide to loyalty on Shopify Plus.

Shopify Ebook

Special thanks to our friends at LoyaltyLion for their insights on this topic.
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