Bakkt Study Examines Loyalty & Rewards Preferences of Digital Assets Among U.S. Consumers

Study validates rising tide of consumer interest in crypto rewards

Bakkt Holdings, Inc., a trusted digital asset platform that enables consumers to buy, sell, send and spend a range of digital assets, today released findings from its “Bakkt Loyalty and Rewards 2022 Outlook Study” of 1,000 U.S. consumers who are members of three or more loyalty programs. It uncovered the evolving nature of crypto preferences within the loyalty and rewards landscape and identified aspects that attract and influence behaviors and demands.

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Earning cash back has long been the leading choice for the average U.S. consumer. However, the results of the study signal a new challenger. The growing ubiquity of cryptocurrency is shifting consumer behavior as 72% of those who purchased crypto at least one time in the past six months, are likely to redeem loyalty points for cryptocurrency. In addition, about half of crypto buyers are interested in earning cryptocurrency instead of points. The ability to earn crypto as a reward for everyday spending is quickly rising to the preference level of earning cash back instead of points. It’s apparent based on the study results that consumer perceptions of crypto rewards are favorably influenced by their relationship to cryptocurrency, with those who said they have bought crypto seeing great appeal in crypto rewards. In addition, income level was found to be a driver of crypto interest, even for those who have not yet purchased it, with 58% of consumers with income over $100,000 saying they are likely to redeem points for cryptocurrency.

“We’re witnessing in real-time the prominence of cryptocurrency in transforming customer experiences, including a rise in the demand for more flexible options such as redeeming points for cryptocurrency or instead earning cryptocurrency as an option,” said Bakkt Chief Product Officer of Loyalty & Rewards, Nancy Gordon. “The ecosystem is growing expeditiously, and brands can be on the cutting-edge of loyalty innovation by introducing crypto rewards that offer the richer experiences consumers are craving.”

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Key National Findings

  • Points on Points on Points: Crypto-buyers and those with incomes over $100k are more likely to use loyalty programs across major categories, over-indexing the average U.S. consumer in hotel, gas, travel, and finance. Crypto buyers and those with income of more than $100k are more likely to report greater loyalty enrollment in 10 programs or more.
  • The Crypto-Appeal: For the 43% of U.S. consumers who trade crypto, the primary reason that they trade cryptocurrency is the potential for long-term returns, and 35% see it as a quick means of making money in the short to medium-term. Still, an emerging and sizable populace of crypto buyers (51%) also sees the value of earning cryptocurrency in addition to loyalty points.
  • The Crypto-Pro: More than 64% of the crypto-buyer respondent group are more familiar with loyalty point conversion and management than the average U.S. consumer, with men in this group polled having more than 60% familiarity and women polled having 46% familiarity. Crypto buyer respondents cite multiple options for redemption, unlocking special loyalty statuses by achieving milestones across multiple programs, and earning cryptocurrency instead of points as their top loyalty program needs.
  • The Crypto-Education Gap: Of the consumers who said they are not likely to redeem points for crypto, 44% responded that the biggest barrier to redeeming cryptocurrency is understanding what can be bought with crypto. Financial literacy and consumer understanding is the gap that separates consumers from trading cryptocurrency and taking advantage of the new ways to monetize and spend digital assets.

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