After local research revealed that a savings card would entice customers to spend more and to switch from competitors, Albertson's has launched a card in Texas.
US supermarket chain, Albertson's, has launched the Preferred Savings Card in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. Recent customer research in the area revealed that two out of three of Albertson's primary shoppers would spend more on groceries if a savings card were to be implemented. Equally importantly, more than sixty percent of Albertsons' top competitors' primary shoppers, who do not currently shop at Albertsons, said that they would do so if a savings card was offered.
The card, developed specially for the Dallas/Fort Worth area, incorporates the best practices of successful loyalty cards from other Albertson's locations in the US. According to Albertson's Dallas/Fort Worth division president, Wayne Denningham, "We refused to introduce a loyalty card until we were confident that we had a product that delivered bona fide benefits to our customers and provided Albertson's with a vehicle capable of enhancing market share in a highly competitive trade area."
During the introductory period, cardholders who reach a predetermined spending level will receive a free frozen turkey and will automatically be entered into a competition to win US$100,000 towards the purchase of a new home.
The card's ongoing benefits include up to 30% discounts at Day's Inns, Travel Lodge, Howard Johnson's, Ramada, Knight's Inn, Wingate, Villager and Amerihost hotels, and up to a 10% discount on Avis car rentals. Additional partners will be added soon.
Meanwhile, Albertsons has recently expanded its full-service online grocery arm, Albertsons.com, to shoppers in San Diego County. This service has been available to customers in Seattle for some two years. Once Albertson's receives an order from a San Diego customer's computer, it is forwarded to one of five local fulfilment stores where it is checked by a personal e-shopper, who then picks the order and checks it for accuracy. Customers can choose to have their order delivered within a specified time window, or can arrange to collect it at any of the company's 38 stores in the county. Orders placed before 10am can be collected after 5pm on the same day. Customers will pay a flat fee of US$5.95 for collected orders and US$9.95 for home delivery.
Albertson's believes that, unlike many of the online grocers that failed to turn a profit, its "click and mortar" strategy will build on its retail capabilities in the most cost effective way. Certainly, the UK's leading supermarket chain, Tesco, has shown this to be true.
Boise, Idaho-based Albertson's operates more than 2,500 stores in 36 states, turning over some US$37 billion per year.