According to a PwC report, one in three consumers (32%) say they will walk away from a brand they love after just one bad experience. Unlike personal relationships, loyalty in the consumer world can be surprisingly transitory. This gets worse in the digital world where it takes just a few clicks and minutes to uninstall one app and replace it with a competitor’s app. There are similarities between how loyalty is formed in the physical and digital world. It all boils down to two things – how you feel about that relationship and how much time you are investing in it.

Deliver Delightful Customer Experiences

156. That’s the number of apps I’ve installed on my mobile phone. On any given day, I will be using at least 10% of them. And out of these, my favourite app is a local banking app. It’s one app that I feel was designed just for me. It’s completely intuitive, allows me to perform most tasks in less than 3 clicks, has all the functions that I need to perform banking on-the-go, is constantly updated with new features, comes with great performance and stability and most of all is very secure. These are what I’d refer to as key ingredients to provide delightful customer experiences.

A great amount of design thinking goes into building such modern apps that deliver intuitive user experiences. A pod-based team structure can be set up where you have all the stakeholders responsible for delivering the app. There needs to be strong alignment amongst all the stakeholders ranging from the software developer, the product manager, line of business all the way to the quality engineer. Everyone should know what they are delivering, why they are delivering and how they will be delivering.

Leveraging the right set of technologies will be a key success criterion for such apps. The app should adopt a cloud native architecture to ensure agility, scalability, and resilience. Security should be incorporated from the earliest stages of app development to minimize risk, time, and costs. These best practices coupled with a sound design thinking approach can help enhance customer experience and as a result improve loyalty.

Elevate Customer Engagement

Another way to measure loyalty in the digital world is by the amount of time consumers are using an app. App engagement time is crucial as it influences revenues through ads, spendings, as well as consumer data that can be monetized in the future. To maximize engagement and app-stickiness, companies are increasingly introducing more revenue-generating offerings within their apps. To that end, we’ve seen the rise of the one-app-to-rule-them-all aka a Superapp. Some of the well-known Superapps in Asia are household names e.g., Grab, Gojek, WeChat and PayTM. Grab for example started out as a ride-hailing app. Today its offerings include deliveries, mobility, financial services among others. Gartner anticipates that Superapps will be one of the top 10 strategic technology trends for 2023.

A major downside of a Superapp is that if compromised due to security vulnerabilities in the app’s code, a malware in its libraries, or a configuration error, it can become the-one-key-to-access-them-all for bad actors. It can be a free pass to not just tamper with, but also exfiltrate all types of sensitive consumer data. According to a McKinsey report, 71% of consumers said they would stop doing business with a company if it gave away sensitive data without permission.

To tackle this data privacy issue, all data exchanges within a Superapp should be encrypted. In addition, we should also perform real time monitoring of sensitive data leaks such as credit cards, and other personal identifiable information (PII).

Engage a Trusted Partner

To build customer loyalty in the digital world, businesses need to delight customers and keep them engaged. Leveraging cloud-native architectures, incorporating sound security and data privacy practices, and using design thinking methodology will be instrumental in building modern, secure, and engaging apps. In addition, it will also be important to engage the right technology partner who can support you on this journey.

For the past 30 years, SUSE has been helping customers realize their business goals through transformative and cutting-edge open-source technologies.

Rancher Prime is an industry leading platform that helps companies roll out scalable and resilient cloud native and container-based apps across a distributed IT landscape. It empowers DevOps teams to build and deploy modern apps and updates in a rapid and automated manner.SUSE NeuVector protects apps from bad actors throughout its software lifecycle from development to production environments. It helps security teams implement zero trust controls for apps that may be running in a distributed environment. NeuVector also comes with advanced preventive threat capabilities to prevent data loss in real time.

Learn more at this link: Rancher by SUSE.


Vishal Ghariwala is the Senior Director & CTO, APJ and Greater China for SUSE, a global leader in true open source solutions. In this capacity, he engages with customer and partner executives across the region, and is responsible for growing SUSE’s mindshare by being the executive technical voice to the market, press, and analysts. He also has a global charter with the SUSE Office of the CTO to assess relevant industry, market and technology trends and identify opportunities aligned with the company’s strategy.

Prior to joining SUSE, Vishal was the Director for Cloud Native Applications at Red Hat where he led a team of senior technologists responsible for driving the growth and adoption of the Red Hat OpenShift, API Management, Integration and Business Automation portfolios across the Asia Pacific region. Before that, he spent a significant amount of time with leading middleware vendors such as IBM, ILOG and Intalio, as well as the public sector.

Vishal has over 20 years of experience in the Software industry and holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore.

Vishal is here on LinkedIn:

Application Security, Mobile Development

Loyalty NZ Chief Data, Analytics and Technology Officer Brian Ferris on the importance of listening to understand what the business challenges are and collaborating with the leadership team to tackle them, what he learned working overseas at global companies, and why building diversity and belonging is a central focus for the organisation.

Watch the episode:

CIO Leadership Live

Your customers expect their payment experiences to be simple, secure, and consistent, whether they’re buying online, on their devices, or in store. They also want to pay the way that best suits them. Customers are increasingly adopting alternative payment methods, such as eChecks and digital wallets.

However, all that choice has made the payment environment increasingly complex. That’s where tokenization can help simplify payments for your business. In fact, it’s already part of the payment security strategy for many businesses with an e-commerce channel – helping keep data secure.

But tokenization can also help you create a seamless payment experience, across channels and payment types, to keep customers coming back.

The evolution of payment tokenization

Almost 20 years ago, sellers, acquirers, and payment platforms started issuing tokens for individual payment credentials with the primary aim of keeping those credentials secure. A customer’s sensitive payment data is replaced with a digital identifier, or token, while the real data is securely stored. Even if the token is compromised, it can’t be reverse engineered to reveal the payment data.

The next iteration was network tokens, generated by payment networks like Visa. Instead of replacing a single primary account number (PAN) for its lifespan, a network token represents a customer’s payment credentials for all subsequent transactions. Even if a customer replaces their card, the credentials are automatically updated via lifecycle management. Customers can be recognized by their network token, allowing you to gain a better understanding of buying behaviors across different channels.

Now Cybersource goes further with its unique super token – the power behind our Token Management Service. Our proprietary super token links together network tokens from different card brands, banks, payment types, and channels.


How super tokens help increase customer loyalty

By linking previously disparate network tokens and payment types together, Cybersource’s super token centralizes and simplifies token management and connects and unifies customer payment data. This allows you to create a complete transaction history for each of your customers, as well as:

Deliver simple, seamless payment experiences, no matter how your customers are shopping.Offer personalized loyalty, reward, and promotional opportunities for every online, mobile, and in-store transaction.

Making payments seamless and personalizing customers’ interactions with your brand can enhance loyalty – and drive repeat business that boosts revenue. You also get peace of mind that you’re keeping payment credentials safe and refreshed and reducing your Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) compliance scope.

To learn more about how payment tokenization can boost customer loyalty, download our guide.

IT Leadership

Like any other retailer, grocery stores want to build trust with their customers and keep them coming back. But the average bill and already slender margins in grocery can make it challenging to create a loyalty program that provides sufficiently compelling rewards.

Nevertheless, it’s worth the effort, given that loyalty programs are a powerful incentive for grocery shoppers. In the US, for example, more than 60% of grocery store loyalty program members say that the financial incentives (such as discounts and promotions) influence where they shop and how much they spend.1

The first challenge is persuading customers to sign up for a loyalty account. Stores with a digital presence tend to roll loyalty programs into their online accounts. However, stores entering the digital space report that almost 57% of their online customers prefer to check out as a guest, rather than register for an account and the associated loyalty rewards.2 How can stores persuade customers to sign up and keep them coming back for more? Follow these tips:

1. Know your customers and what matters to them

Know who your customers are and make sure the rewards you offer reflect their wants and needs. This involves making a genuine effort to understand your most loyal customers and what will entice them to keep shopping with you. Initially, you’ll probably need to gather insights from surveys, customer service data and customer interviews. Once you have a body of customers signed up as account and program members, you’ll be able to gather data about their shopping behaviors directly, enabling you to further refine and personalize your loyalty program and offers.

2. Make it easy (and rewarding) to sign up

Make the enrollment process as straightforward as you can, while ensuring you capture all the relevant customer information. Consider offering an incentive to new joiners, such as a ‘welcome’ promo code or discount off their first shop.

3. Make rewards about more than just shopping

Think about offering bonus points or other incentives to program members who refer friends and family members to the program. And give people a reason to keep coming back, such as a reward for opening your mobile app every day for seven days, or for visiting the physical store twice in a week.

4. Deliver seamless transactions at the point of sale

Give loyalty program members a smoother checkout experience instore with reserved tills, or the ability to pay using a barcode, QR code or the app itself (with additional rewards for doing so).

5. Provide genuine value to your customers

If your loyalty program is mostly focused on benefiting your business, customers will likely see through that. Instead, make sure that customers feel like they’re getting something in return for all that loyalty they’re showing you. One approach could be to offer different tiers of rewards or exclusive offers based on spending thresholds.

What technology can help optimize the loyal customer experience?

Optimizing the experience for loyal customers means recognizing them regardless of how they interact with your brand, so you can offer them the privileges, promotions and personal touch that will help them feel valued.  

With Cybersource’s sophisticated Token Management Service, you can recognize your customers regardless of the global payment types, brands, methods, channels, or devices they use. Token Management Service creates one, unified, proprietary token identifier, which centralizes and orchestrates management of all tokens to provide a 360-degree view of the customer. That enables you to support the development of omnichannel experiences and incentives that help to further increase customer engagement, satisfaction, and loyalty.

The ongoing shift to digital grocery shopping means that the competition is often only a tap away. A well designed and well executed loyalty program can play an important role in strengthening customers’ loyalty to your brand.

For more about building customer loyalty in grocery and additional insights, download Cybersource’s “Food Experiences” guide.

IT Leadership