New online mall customised for loyalty schemes
An online shopping mall platform developed specifically for affinity rewards and loyalty programmes has been launched by US-based e-commerce and rewards technology provider Mall Networks Inc., with funding from IDG Ventures Boston.
Mall Networks brings more than 250 online retailers (such as Lands' End, Teleflora, Overstock.com and Travelocity) into an easy-to-navigate online mall. The mall itself can then be customised for individual loyalty programmes to help them increase customer loyalty through a points-based system where members earn points for all of their purchases with participating retailers.
NASCAR sets up shop The first partner organisations to offer the online shopping mall to their loyal fan bases are the NASCAR RacePoints and Major League Baseball Fan loyalty programmes, in conjunction with loyalty service provider Sports Loyalty Systems.
NASCAR RacePoints was the first fan loyalty programme to offer its participants an online shopping mall using the Mall Networks technology. At the NASCAR RacePoints Online Mall (emall.racepoints.nascar.com), fans earn points toward official NASCAR rewards when buy from the mall's merchants (which include the NASCAR Superstore, among others).
MLB sets up shops With help from Sports Loyalty Systems (SLS), Major League Baseball (MLB) teams are also taking advantage of the loyalty-based online mall, starting with the Los Angeles Dodgers (thinkblue.dodgers.com). According to Les Otten, founder and chairman for SLS, "Our mission is to provide MLB teams with the ability to reward fans for their loyalty, and to create new revenue streams for the teams and sponsors."
SLS brings fans closer to their favourite teams by awarding points both inside and outside the ballpark that can be redeemed for game tickets and club merchandise, as well as access to one-off fan experiences. Fans join the programme at the ballpark or on their favourite team's web site, and choose from several options to earn points. Through the partnership, Mall Networks is developing, hosting and managing an online mall for each participating MLB team. Fans can go to these web sites to shop online, earning points for each purchase. Merchants are also to provide extra incentives through the mall, such as special offers and bonus point promotions.
Charitable, too The company has also developed a mall for online fundraising, which helps schools and non-profit organisations (such as Epilepsy.com) to raise funds all year-round.
According to Dave Andre, founder and CEO for Mall Networks, "Any rewards programme of meaningful size needs to have an online mall as part of its core offering. Online shopping is currently worth over US$100 billion per year, and growing at an annual rate of over 20%. Programme participants are making purchases every day that could strengthen their bond with their affinity organisation."
Mall Networks recently closed a Series A round of funding led by IDG Ventures Boston. Jeff Bussgang, general partner at IDG Ventures Boston has joined the company's board of directors.
For additional information: · Visit Mall Networks at http://www.mallnetworks.com · Visit SLS at http://www.sportsloyaltysystems.com · Visit IDG Ventures at http://www.idgventures.com · Visit NASCAR at http://www.nascar.com · Visit MLB at http://www.mlb.com