Why You Need to Ditch Your Paper Punch Card in 2021

Doron Vermaat

Doron Vermaat

Ultrarunner, domain name investor and a lifelong learner.
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As the old saying goes, “out with the old and in with the new.”

We live in a day and age where technological wonders have made it so the world can almost function 100% digitized.

Think about it for a second.

Over the past two decades, the music store and video rental shop have both become obsolete. Why? Because people don’t buy physical movies and records/CDs anymore. Yes, both products still exist, but they’re almost irrelevant.

Instead, digital streaming has taken over in those industries.

Then consider the functionality of our homes. HVAC and security systems are often entirely Smart-Tech-enabled. You don’t have to touch the actual devices themselves. Instead, it’s all done over your phone.

What we’re getting at here is that the world is traveling in one direction. And when you equip your business with paper punch cards for its loyalty program, you’re swimming against the proverbial tide.

Sadly, this will result in customers going elsewhere to enjoy loyalty-based perks. Namely, they’ll align with businesses leveraging digital solutions to reward their repeat customers. This shift is primarily due to convenience, safety, environmental benefits, and ease-of-use.

We will discuss this topic more in-depth throughout this blog:

The Current COVID-19 Climate Doesn’t Support Physical Punch Cards.

Any method with the potential to stop the spread of COVID-19 should be applied in your business.

Whether it’s a restaurant, café, hairdresser, or anything else, many establishments are trying to go as contactless as possible. These efforts are due to the deadly virus.

Applying contactless protocols becomes less likely when your loyalty program involves physical punch cards. Failing to evolve and embrace a digital loyalty solution means you’re putting your staff and customers unnecessarily at risk.

A digital stamp card solution from Loopy Loyalty only requires a mobile device such as a smartphone or tablet to dole out rewards. Thus, you’ll end up maintaining contactless protocols and adhering to the safest practices within your establishment.

Contactless loyalty card

In the COVID-19 landscape, the advantages of ditching your punch card couldn’t be illustrated any clearer.

Still, that’s not the only significant boon that comes with a digital stamp card solution. The benefits are plentiful — almost to the point of being endless.

Physical Punch Cards Are Bad for the Environment

Did you know that 46% of the world’s forests are already destroyed?

Moreover, tropical forest destruction accounts for 20% of current greenhouse gas emissions.

By implementing a loyalty program with paper punch cards, it feeds that monumental environmental problem. It’s understandable if there’s no other option on the table. You want to treat and convey your appreciation to your customers.

But it’s not the only option. Digital stamp card solutions are readily available, minimize waste, and are environmentally friendly.

Customers Forget Digital Stamp Cards

Put yourself in your customers’ shoes.

They’ve been coming to your establishment repetitively, helping build your business and increase your bottom line.

While this hypothetical individual consistently purchases from you, they don’t regularly remember their physical card. In fact, they might have almost accumulated the requisite stamps to earn a reward, but then they lost their card. Suddenly, they must start from the bottom after all that work.

Does that seem fair?

It’s a rhetorical question because we all know the answer.

Conversely, the only thing your loyal customers must remember with a digital stamp card is their mobile phone. Last we checked, in 2020, iPhones and Androids are practically third arms that people bring everywhere.

This way, your customer base can receive the rewards they deserve instead of missing out because physical cards are cumbersome and easily lost/forgotten.

Physical Punch Cards Don’t Help You Target Customers.

With your traditional paper punch card, the related transactions begin and end in your establishment. The benefits here are relatively limited. Yes, it creates some urgency to make purchases, but that’s only one dimension.

With digital solutions, it goes well beyond the stamps or rewards.

First and foremost, it’s possible to target specific customers with marketing messaging via push notifications on their mobile devices.

Best of all? Loopy Loyalty allows you to filter and finely tune your targeting to varying degrees. Whether you wish to message all your customers or a specific segment, the capabilities are waiting to be leveraged.


Predominantly, businesses finding the most success with this feature are:

  • Enticing lapsed customers to return with a discounted offer.
  • Letting people know they’re close to earning a reward.
  • Informing individuals about daily or weekly specials.
  • Sending out alerts about one-time-only offers to establish urgency.

Paper Cards Don’t Offer Many Insights.

Unless you have a photographic memory, there’s not much you can ascertain from customers using physical punch cards. There’s no mechanism involved in identifying trends and patterns that a business might incorporate in their overarching strategy.

Really, it just acts as a piece of paper that you punch for a customer, who will soon get something for free. It’s all a little bit ho-hum when you think about it.

Why not ask for more from your rewards?

At Loopy Loyalty, the platform collects rich customer insights that you can measure.

This will let you know who your most loyal customers are, for instance. Thus, your marketing strategies can revolve around these fine folks.

Moreover, these statistics allow you to calculate the ideal amount customers should spend before rewarding them. Namely, Loopy Loyalty gives insights into revenue, costs, and net benefits with your loyalty program. You’ll strike the perfect balance of giving back to your customers while bolstering your bottom line.

When this type of data and insights available, it helps ensure that you’ll obtain the most return from your loyalty rewards program.

Embrace the Future and Ditch the Paper Cards

Much like the taxi cabs, video rental shops, music stores, and BlackBerry, physical punch card-based loyalty programs are obsolete.

They’re rapidly being replaced by digital programs bringing much more value to customers and business owners alike.

For starters, there’s the matter of keeping your clientele and staff safe during COVID-19. Then comes the overwhelming environmental benefits.

Lastly, come the marketing advantages and multifaceted features that help your company flourish more than you ever could with physical punch cards.

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