500FRIENDS BLOG
Loyalty trends & best practices

Loyalty Makeover: Abercrombie & Fitch

by Zach Woith
March 24, 2014
Loyalty Makeover: Abercrombie & Fitch

In this installment, we look at the loyalty program at Abercrombie and Fitch, the $4.1 billion fashion retailer with over 1,000 stores, and brands including Abercrombie Kids, Hollister, and Gilly Hicks. 500friends Loyalty Makeovers offer suggestions to retail brands for making the most of their loyalty initiatives. What Abercrombie and Fitch's loyalty program looks like today: Abercrombie and Fitch's loyalty program distinguishes itself from cookie-cutter loyalty programs by embodying the brand's tone and effectively addressing core customers. Benefits include free streaming of music playlists, the chance to skip lines at events, and members-only birthday offers. Limited-time promotional offers keep the program fresh and relevant. First impressions: Abercrombie and Fitch is attempting a turnaround, with revenue dropping 12%, to $4.1 billion, and profit falling 77%, to $54.6 million, during ... Read more

Loyalty Makeover: Office Depot

by Ashley Bienvenu
March 11, 2014
Loyalty Makeover: Office Depot

In this installment, we look at the loyalty program at Office Depot, the $17 billion office supplies retailer with 1,900 stores that recently merged with Office Max. Loyalty Makeover offers suggestions to retail brands for making the most of their loyalty initiatives.In late 2013, Office Depot completed a $1.2 billion merger with competitor Office Max. In this Loyalty Makeover we'll look at both programs, and we'll examine the opportunities in merging them. What the Office Depot and Office Max loyalty programs look like today: Office Depot Rewards lets members earn rewards for purchases of ink, toner, paper and copy/print/ship services. Members can also earn rewards for recycling used ink cartridges and completing member profiles. Members who spend at least $200 in a calendar quarter achieve Choice status, which allows them to earn extra points through purchases, made either in-store or online, for products in up to... Read more

Loyalty Makeover: Fanatics

by Ashley Bienvenu
March 10, 2014
Loyalty Makeover: Fanatics

In this installment, we look at the loyalty program at Fanatics Inc, the $1 billion sports merchandising online retailer that also provides e-commerce services for professional teams. 500friends Loyalty Makeovers offer suggestions to retail brands for making the most of their loyalty initiatives. What Fanatics Rewards look like today: Fanatics’ Fan Cash rewards are essentially discount credits applied to members’ future orders. For each purchase between $50 and $100, members earn a future discount worth 5% of the total; for purchases over $100, they get a future discount worth 10% of the total. Fan Cash is automatically credited to members’ accounts and doesn’t expire as long as members make at least one purchase per year. Members also get free three-day shipping. First impressions: At #43 on the IR 500 list with sales of around $1 billion, Fanatics is becoming a major e-commerce player. However, after its key acquisiti... Read more

Loyalty Makeover: JCPenney

by Zach Woith
March 03, 2014
Loyalty Makeover: JCPenney

In this installment, we look at the loyalty program at JCPenney, the $12 billion department store chain with 1,100 stores and $1 billion in online sales. 500friends Loyalty Makeovers offer suggestions to retail brands for making the most of their loyalty initiatives. What JCP Rewards looks like today: JCP Rewards members accrue one point for every dollar they spend. For every 100 points they earn in a calendar month, they receive a $10 coupon towards future purchases (up to a maximum of ten $10 coupons per month). At the end of every month, point balances reset to zero. First impressions: With a 2013 operating loss of over $1.2 billion, investing in customer retention and loyalty may seem like a luxury for JCPenney. However, to really get back on track, the embattled department store chain will have to prop up its gross margins, which fell to 29.4% in 2013 (typical department stores gross margins hover in the mid- to up... Read more

Loyalty Makeover: Ace Hardware

by Arif Damji
February 28, 2014
Loyalty Makeover: Ace Hardware

In this installment, we look at the loyalty program at Ace Hardware, the $3 billion hardware store co-operative with 4,700 locations. Loyalty Makeover offers suggestions to retail brands for making the most of their loyalty initiatives. What Ace Hardware's loyalty program looks like today: Known as Ace Rewards, the Ace Hardware loyalty program rewards members with in-store discounts ("Instant Savings ") and a points currency for all purchases. Members collect 10 points for each dollar spent and get 1,000 points for enrolling. Once they reach 2,500 points, they receive a coupon for $5 back on their next purchase, equating to a 2% funding rate. The private label Ace Rewards Visa Card allows members to augment their Ace Rewards point balances with up to 10 points per dollar spent. First impressions: Ace Rewards is unusual among retail loyalty programs in that its benefits include both a preferential member price as w... Read more

Loyalty Makeover: Staples Rewards

by Zach Woith
February 25, 2014
Loyalty Makeover: Staples Rewards

In this installment of Loyalty Makeover, we look at the loyalty program at Staples, the $24 billion office supply retailer with more than 2,000 stores and over $10 billion in online sales. Loyalty Makeover offers suggestions to retail brands for making the most of their loyalty initiatives. What Staples Rewards looks like today: The core value proposition of Staples Rewards is 5% back on purchases. Customers receive the 5% reward once they hit a minimum quarterly spending threshold; if they fail to hit the quarterly threshold, they stop receiving the reward. Other notable elements of the program include 3 status tiers, free shipping (with no minimum), exclusive offers, and benefits tied to the ink category, which has elevated significance to both Staples and its customers. First impressions: In its most recent earnings call (on Q3 2013 results), Staples said its revenues and margins had dipped slightly (2% and 0.... Read more

Loyalty Makeover: AutoZone

by Zach Woith
February 20, 2014
Loyalty Makeover: AutoZone

n this installment of Loyalty Makeover, we look at the rewards program at AutoZone, the $9.1 billion automotive parts retailer with more than 5,000 stores. Loyalty Makeover suggests ways for retail brands to make the most of their loyalty initiatives. What AutoZone Rewards look like today: Members sign up for AutoZone Rewards at a physical store, where they receive a Rewards Card linked to their account. For each purchase of $20 or more, online or in-store, members earn one "credit." When members accumulate five credits, they receive a $20 voucher for in-store redemption. The expiration period for credits varies by state, however in most states members must earn their 5 credits within a 6-month period and redeem vouchers within 3 months. First impressions: AutoZone's financial performance has been fantastic over the last 12 months, with its stock jumping more than 42%. That said, the company could be doing even better... Read more

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