Retail Reinvention: Loyalty as the New Currency

Incentive solution firm Rymax relays the rules of retail customer loyalty programs and discusses its growth and influence in the sector

This article originally appeared in Women’s Wear Daily, March 29, 2022

Reaping the rewards of retail is now a speedy, streamlined experience, thanks to exponential growth and creativity in the incentives space that has transformed the segment. And in focus are high performing luxury brands in the business of exploring the latitudes of loyalty on all levels – and deeming said loyalty as a leading form of currency.

For Rymax, a New Jersey-based incentive solution firm that carefully selects products and brands for its rewards portfolio, the company says it is in the business of motivation.

From product distribution and fulfillment to the creation of bespoke recognition programs and events that can help maximize business growth, Rymax takes aim at engaging employees, motivating sales teams, and increasing customer retention through premium brand name rewards by offering a full package suite of solutions.

Retail Reinvention:Loyalty as the New Currency


Working with Fortune 500 companies and luxury brands such as Michael Kors, Gaiam and Thule, Rymax has over 17,000 trending rewards options from over 450 brands after two decades in the incentives space.

The incentives market’s growth and evolution come at a time when retail itself has been turned on its head: Studies show that more than 60 percent of a company’s business comes from existing clients. And increasing customer retention by only five percent can boost a company’s profitability by as much as 25 percent, all according to Rymax.

“Repeat business is critical to any organization,” Eve Kolakowski, President at Rymax, told FN – and the same can be said of employee retention. “Highly engaged workers are more motivated, more productive, and more committed to the business. This translates into better retention rates (and lower attrition costs), increased sales, greater profitability, and a happier workplace,” Kolakowski said. “Happier employees translate to happier customers. Today, more and more businesses are investing additional resources into customer loyalty and employee recognition programs.”

We have a very, very impressive portfolio of partners, which really is the heart and soul of the business.

In fact, the Incentive Research Foundation recently reported that overall incentive budgets are expected to increase by 34 percent in 2022, with an average spend of more than $800 per redemption.

“As a result, for brands seeking to bolster sales, this channel offers a lucrative path of distribution with endless opportunities for growth, exposure and repeat business. Rymax serves as an extension to the brand’s sales division, bringing additional business and success through a non-retail marketplace.”


Rymax said that it differentiates in the rewards space because it serves not only as the program host, but also as the rewards provider. “Our team curates assortments specifically targeting a client’s audience and objective while maintaining brand integrity for the item being offered,” Kolakowski explained. “Moreover, we inventory the rewards in our warehouses, which are bicoastal. We have an internal customer service team, merchandising division, procurement group and a dedicated vendor relations department that handles the requests of our brands — catering to our clients and brand partners simultaneously. We are a total incentive solution with a premier brand portfolio.”

The brand noted that it takes a “strategic approach to motivation” driven by a focus on creating a customized client experience.

Kolakowski noted that “We have a team of product experts who carefully curate product assortments that fit the specific wants and needs of our audience. There is no ‘generic’ assortment or catalog.”

And, uniquely, its incentive platforms are in sync with its clients’ branding and the strategic vision of its brand partners, which currently skew luxury. “As an organization, we are targeting luxury brands for some of our redemption assortments. Some of our key partners include MCM, Salvatore Ferragamo, Breitling, and Jo Malone London. Within our Business Channel, brands can boost sales without adversely affecting their retail relationships.”

Rymax emphasized that its future is focused on scouting more high-end brands. “We have a very, very impressive portfolio of partners, which really is the heart and soul of the business. We’ve spent more than two decades carefully onboarding and maintaining a very elite brand assortment. We are committed to providing only the very best – and most desirable – brands to our clients within their programs.”


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