Green Hills loyalty scheme goes biometric
The Syracuse, NY-based grocery store Green Hills, owned and operated by customer loyalty guru Gary Hawkins, is to install the Pay By Touch biometric fingerprint ID system for payments and loyalty programme identification.
The new combined payment-and-loyalty programme, called SmartShop, is powered by Pay By Touch kiosks and terminals, allowing customers to use a simple finger scan not only to pay for their groceries but also to access customised coupons, promotions and loyalty rewards in-store. For those who would rather stay at home, or use other methods of payment and identification, Green Hills is also providing the same benefits via email and on the web.
According to John Rogers, chairman and CEO for Pay By Touch, "The ability to access rewards and discounts with the touch of a finger, in addition to secure and convenient payments, enhances the promise of convenience for members. Green Hills' commitment to customer service makes it a perfect partner to launch this new product."
More relevant Unlike traditional loyalty programmes that attempt to shift shoppers' brand choices with offers and discounts, the Green Hills finger-activated system offers shoppers discounts on the things they're already buying. Gary Hawkins explained: "Our business strategy has always been based on the premise that customer service is the best way to retain customers and drive business. With SmartShop, our shoppers can expect to save on the things they actually buy, as well as getting through the check-out with greater speed, ease, and security."
How it works To use SmartShop, the shopper scans their finger at kiosks location throughout the store. They can then print out customised shopping lists and personalised special offers. Then, at the point of sale, they can choose to pay with another finger scan that automatically links to their preferred bank account or payment card, and also allocates their SmartShop loyalty points.
There is no cost for consumers to join the SmartShop programme, and all personal and financial information is encrypted and stored at secure IBM data centres. The Pay By Touch registration, even if done through Green Hills, allows members to use Pay By Touch services at all participating merchants throughout the USA.
Proving ground Green Hills was founded in the 1930's as a roadside farm stand, and later evolved into an independent, high-volume supermarket in Syracuse, New York. But apart from being a successful grocery store operation in its own right, it also serves as Hawkins' testing laboratory for new technologies and marketing insights with one aim: the development of true one-to-one marketing techniques in the mass retail environment.