How popular are points payments?

Dan Berthiaume
Senior Editor, Technology
Almost all consumers are willing to pay with loyalty points.

Most consumers would like to use their loyalty points to pay for in-store and online purchases,

That's according to a survey of 1,000 U.S. consumers from loyalty network Engage People and The Wise Marketer. The study, “Paying with Points – ‘Tomorrow Is Too Late,"  found that 84% of respondents would use loyalty points as currency in the future if offered, up from 80% who said they would do so in 2022. 

In addition, 76% said they would be willing to change credit cards to gain access to improved pay with points benefits.

The survey also found that the primary motivation for using loyalty points as payments is to save money and combat inflation by reducing purchase expenses. When indicating preferred redemption locations, respondents mainly selected grocery stores (62%), online retail (56%), gas stations or convenience stores (52%), and fast-food restaurants (45%) for utilizing their loyalty points. 

Roughly 37% of respondents reported having used pay with points one or more times, while 43% were either aware of pay with points but had yet to encounter it or were unfamiliar with it as a payment choice. 

"This year's findings underscore continued growth in demand from consumers for reward programs that offer the ability to pay with points, and a strong interest in utilizing reward points for essential, every-day expenses like groceries, online shopping, fast food, and gas," said Len Covello, CTO of Engage People. "Retailers have a unique opportunity to enhance their loyalty programs by customizing them to include better redemption options through point accumulation and meet the evolving preferences and needs of their customer base."

Survey: Holiday shoppers use loyalty programs

In related findings, a recent survey of more than 4,000 consumers in the U.S. and U.K., conducted by YouGov for composable commerce solutions provider Commercetools revealed that 65% of respondents in both regions were planning to leverage loyalty programs to save money during the 2023 holiday shopping season.

Women, millennials, and U.K. residents were the respondent demographics most likely to apply loyalty rewards toward holiday purchases. 

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