Best of Loyalty Tools for Restaurants

by Back of House Staff

Updated January 9th, 2024

Loyalty programs for restaurants

There are a ton of strategies you can use to market your restaurant, and one of those is implementing a loyalty program to keep your customers coming back time and again. Finding ways to not only engage and reward your loyal customers, but to also better understand their needs and behavior through data and analytics can be a key component to business growth.

We’ve identified some of the strongest loyalty programs on the market to help you grow your business, including bonus options for best digital gift card and best digital punch card system.

Jump to:

  • Best Built-in Loyalty Program in a POS System

  • Best Tried-and-True Loyalty Program for Small and Mid-Sized Restaurants

  • Best All-in-One Loyalty Program for Enterprise

  • Best Gift Card Program

  • Best Digital Punch Card System

Toast Marketing Engine

Best Built-in Loyalty Program in a POS System

Visit Toast Website

Who it's best for: Ideal for anyone who already uses Toast as their POS system.

Things to consider: There are more robust loyalty program options available, but if you’re looking for ease of integration with a Toast system, it won’t get much easier than this.

Where it excels: For restaurants who have already chosen Toast as their POS system, their marketing engine (and more specifically their loyalty program) provides a simple way for restaurant owners to increase guest frequency.

Feature overview

  • Customize sign up bonuses, set accrual and redemption rates, and offer birthday rewards

  • Pay one flat fee per month for your loyalty program

  • Make it easy for guests to seamlessly accrue points with each swipe of their credit card, so there’s need for them to hold a physical card

  • Get a clear picture of your regulars with loyalty program reporting

Onboarding and support

Toast offers 24/7 support for all of their restaurant partners, so you can call them at any time to troubleshoot a problem. You can choose between self-service onboarding or onsite + remote onboarding with a dedicated consultant to get started. They also have an online Customer Care center with articles, walkthroughs, system updates, and relevant news to stay up-to-date.


You have to be an existing Toast POS customer in order to add the loyalty program to your suite of tools, but the pricing for this additional service is available upon request.

Learn more about Toast Marketing Engine




Best Tried-and-True Loyalty Program for Small and Mid-Sized Restaurants

Punchh supercharges both the in-store and digital customer experience by centralizing data and creating one-to-one connections across all touchpoints. It has a machine-learning-powered customer engagement toolkit for creating retention and remarketing experiences.

Visit Punchh Website

Who it's best for: Ideal for small and mid-sized restaurants that are focused on growth.

Things to consider: Built for scalability and marketing insights, it can get a little confusing for businesses with simpler operations. It’s also worth noting that Punchh is not PCI compliant, making gift card integrations challenging.

Where it excels: The Punchh website claims to “power the loyalty and marketing programs of over 40% of the top 100 restaurant brands in the United States,” which gives you an idea of how effective it is as a platform.

Feature overview

  • Turn casual customers into loyal, repeat visitors by running sophisticated customer journeys and automated campaigns

  • Create offers and personalized incentives to your customers’ unique tastes and behaviors, at scale, without compromising revenue

  • Make your customers feel engaged, understood, and valued with a cohesive omnichannel loyalty experience 

  • Uncover new audiences and reward existing ones with data-driven segmentation

  • Get all of your data in one place with 200+ native integrations

Onboarding and support

They have a comprehensive Resources section on their website, complete with e-books, industry insights, and on-demand webinars to better understand the platform (both before and after becoming a customer). They also have a Help Center, as well as customer support through phone and email.


Pricing is available upon request. Contact the Punchh team to schedule a demo.

Learn more about Punchh




Best All-in-One Loyalty Program for Enterprise

Como is a data-driven customer engagement and loyalty solution powering food and beverage businesses to understand their customers and deliver unforgettable experiences.

Visit Como Website

Who it's best for: Best for enterprise and multi-unit operations who are looking to take their marketing to the next level.

Things to consider: Since Como is a pretty comprehensive program, it could prove to be too much for a small or mid-sized restaurant business.

Where it excels: Como is a great option because of their third-party integrations that make it seamless and easy to use.

Feature overview

  • Customize your experience by creating a loyalty program with the features that best suit your business, including a points shop, digital punch cards, and cash back 

  • Personalize your gifts and coupons depending on your members’ preferences, profile, and purchase history

  • Amplify emotional engagement with personalized Spin the Wheel animations and Scratch & Win experiences

  • Guarantee return visits and repeat purchases to your business instead of the competition by letting your customers buy packages of prepaid products and services

  • Launch viral promo code campaigns to identified and non-identified customers

  • Generate additional revenue with proprietary AI algorithms that encourage customers to spend more and visit  more often

Onboarding and support

The Como Resources Center has a ton of content to help you navigate their platform, including easy-to-read guides and success tips. You can fill out a form on their website to access customer service support.


Pricing is not listed on their website, but you can contact their team to schedule a demo and learn more.

Learn more about Como


Bonus: Loyalty Gator

Who it's best for: Restaurants looking for flexibility and customization when it comes to their gift card program.

Things to consider: Loyalty Gator, while thorough, has limited restaurant POS integrations, because the platform is not a restaurant-specific solution.

Where it excels: Loyalty Gator makes it easier for big corporations to create larger all-in-one loyalty programs, including customer and employee rewards programs. An added bonus is that there are no transaction fees and you can use a free 30-day trial of their software.

Feature overview

  • Get more customers signed up to your program more quickly, no software download required 

  • Maintain data privacy by housing data in a top-tier data center (and customers have 100% ownership of the data they collect)

  • Connect from anywhere with easy-to-use web-based software

  • Track all of your most important metrics with a built-in versatile reporting tool 

  • Promote your loyalty program in-store using free countertop marketing templates

  • Easily monitor customer satisfaction in real-time, and get instant email notifications so you can respond right away

Onboarding and support

Each customer gets a Loyalty Gator rep assigned to their business to address any questions that pop up along the way. 


There are no contracts and no transaction fees. Customers are billed month-to-month, and you are free to cancel whenever you want. All pricing is based on a single location.


Who it’s best for



Operators looking to build a loyalty program for up to 100 customers



Operators looking to build a loyalty program for up to 5,000 customers and Zapier integrations capabilities



Operators looking to build a loyalty program for up to 10,000 customers, Zapier integrations capabilities, and a customer web app portal


Learn more about Toast


Bonus: Belly


Best Digital Punch Card System

Through a customer-facing digital rewards program, Belly helps you identify the habits of your most loyal customers and reward them for that loyalty.
Visit Belly Website

Who it's best for: Small and mid-size restaurants looking to enhance their loyalty rewards program with a digital punch card system

Things to consider: Belly is not built specifically for restaurants, so there could be limitations when it comes to integrating the platform with your systems. And if you want to create a branded loyalty experience, you’ll have to upgrade to the enterprise plan. 

Where it excels: Their integrations with Facebook, Twitter, and Yelp let customers share their experiences, exposing your small business to new hyper-local customers within their social networks.

Feature overview

  • Make your punch card easily accessible with Apple Passbook and Google Wallet integrations (it’s also iBeacon enabled)

  • Sign up customers quickly with a customer-facing iPad, and control the branding on the screen

  • Seamlessly collect and track real-time customer data like email address, visit history, age, and gender

  • Connect to Facebook, Twitter, and Yelp to get more likes, shares, and reviews from your most loyal customers

  • Promote your loyalty program with stickers, signs, and digital collateral

Onboarding and support

They have a Help Center on their website that provides support for customers and the restaurants using their platform. Restaurants are paired with a Merchant Success Manager upon onboarding who can address any concerns along the way.



Who it’s best for



Restaurants who want the Belly loyalty program with up to 12 email campaigns and a Facebook integration



Restaurants who are looking to enhance their loyalty program with unlimited email campaigns and email marketing automations



Enterprise operators looking to launch a branded loyalty program that integrates with their existing POS system

Upon Request

Learn more about Belly


Our evaluation process

We’ve developed a process to find the best marketing loyalty tools for restaurants to get new guests in the door and keep loyal customers returning for more. Here’s how we did it.

Surveys and other research with people in the industry

We conducted surveys and gathered feedback from operators and employees across different service models and segments with experience using these systems on a day-to-day basis.

Interviews with Back of House restaurant tech experts

We also gained insights from our staff of experts who have years of experience in the industry and with restaurant technology. 

Secondary research

All of this was supplemented with our own research and participation in product overviews and training sessions with vendors on their products and services.