In brief

In brief

  • In the wake of the pandemic, intensifying digitalization, and evolving customer expectations, the nature of customer loyalty is changing rapidly.
  • Most Nordic loyalty programs currently on offer are not differentiated and contextualized to the customer's shopping journey or new demands.
  • To gain continuous value from loyalty initiatives as a differentiating factor, grocers must raise their game quickly to meet the age of experience.

Nordic grocery is an industry in flux

New ways of shopping are challenging long-held assumptions about the value propositions that can secure loyal customers and competitive advantage. Success hinges increasingly on creativity and differentiation through hyper personalization - yet finding the right creative mix is proving elusive.

Price still matters, but sustainability, transparency, and purpose are just as important to consumers; perhaps more so.

While online shopping is booming, customers still yearn for in-store shopping and experiences. Increased omni-channel preferences from customers open new opportunities for grocers to design experiences that balance the best of both worlds.

However, national, regional, and above all demographic differences complicate the picture. The young generation in particular seeks more than a transactional relationship and demands meaningful experiences when they shop.

Maintaining the loyalty of grocery retail customers has never been more important.

Customer loyalty in Nordic grocery retail

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Our study shows that customers want loyalty initiatives that are omnichannel, emotionally engaging, and highly personalized. Initiatives that recognize their evolving preferences and shifting needs embrace their willingness to shop smarter and more sustainably and that support them in achieving unique personal goals.

Most Nordic shoppers


are members of at least one loyalty program


Yet almost two thirds find them dull or confusing

To understand the Nordic loyalty landscape in grocery retail, we gathered a variety of insights to shed light on the ever-changing industry from multiple perspectives. Not only did we survey around 1600 Nordic consumers and interviewed key industry stakeholders, we also conducted a qualitative mapping to examine loyalty initiatives from 13 Nordic grocers.

Quantitative consumer survey

The cross-Nordic consumer survey investigated three main areas; customer & user experience, sustainability, and consumer loyalty, to understand the current situation

Mapping loyalty initiatives

Researchers examined offerings on 37 factors, including program structure, touchpoints, monetary benefits, services, presented experiences, data and initial communication

Key stakeholder interviews

To nuance the customer perspective and deepen our insights into current plans and initiatives at grocery retailers, we conducted interviews with key industry stakeholders

Accenture research & POVs

In bringing the insights together, we have leveraged existing Accenture industry research done within retail, the grocery industry, consumption, and changing trends

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How to succeed with loyalty in an age of experiences

Loyalty is a powerful engine of business growth - and leaders who leverage loyalty as a differentiator can enjoy a considerable competitive advantage. Based on key insights, three specific actions were identified:

Address multiple shopping missions

Understanding your customers, obsessing about their shifting needs, and utilizing this customer-centric mindset across your organization is key to loyalty success.

Transcend the transactional approach

Customers now also seek purposeful offerings that help achieve their goals. Design your organization for innovation.

Embrace and support customers' willingness to change

Structure loyalty offerings in a modular way, allowing customers to design their own value proposition for unique benefits and experiences.

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Nordic grocers need to move fast...

...from a loyalty program designed for the many, focused on transactional engagement, to a personalized loyalty program designed for the individual, focused on the experiences and recognition.

Read our full report to learn more about the key actions for success.

Julie Ahrenkiel

Consultant – Accenture Interactive

Julie Rosenlind

Consultant – Accenture Interactive


Snjezana Maric

Senior Strategy Manager – Customer & Growth

Mikael Ekman

Nordic Retail and E-commerce Lead

Åsa Leckner Tham

Head of CRM & Loyalty – Kaplan, part of Accenture Interactive

Michael Christiansen

Managing Director

Caroline Andersen

Client Director & Head of Consulting – Kaplan, part of Accenture Interactive


Let’s stay together—customer retention in retail
Future of Nordic grocery retail

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