For retailers, a loyalty program can help attract and retain customers while increasing the so-called lifetime value of a customer, Fung said.
"These programs can encourage consumers to shop more frequently at the retailer or spend more with each visit," he said.
Unlike store-specific loyalty programs, some shoppers might get better use out of generic programs that can be used across various retailers, Macmillan said.
Credit cards, for example, often reward users with points for shopping at various stores, as does the Drop program— which Fung called "agnostic."
"We have no exclusivity to any merchant," he said. "We have multiple grocers, multiple airlines ... across every category we allow the consumer to choose what they want."
While consumers can use loyalty programs to earn points and save money, experts have raised privacy concerns with the way loyalty programs use customer information as well as data breaches.
Also, customers should protect themselves from "rewards inflation," Macmillan said.
Retailers can change the value of their points at any time, she said, potentially making your points worth less the longer you wait to redeem them.
"It's recommended that card holders earn and burn their points," Macmillan said. "If you're inclined to save points for a flight or a big grocery shop, it might be better to actually focus on smaller redemptions as you go."