Loyalty scheme launched in Dublin for local retailers
15 September 2010
Small to medium sized local businesses in Dublin can now take advantage of a loyalty scheme due to the launch of AIB Merchant Services (AIBMS) new loyaltyplus solution. Using just one loyalty card, the ZapaTAG, customers will be able to collect and redeem loyalty points across any participating businesses in the Dublin area. This loyalty card offers a simple to use and low cost option for smaller retailers which AIB hope will attract and retain customers and help keep local businesses in the area thriving.
The ZapaTAG, from ZapaTechnology, is a contactless tag that allows multiple loyalty cards to operate on a single tag, which is integrated with AIB Merchant Services’ point of sale terminals. A customer collects their free tag from a participating store which they then affix to the back of their mobile phone. The customer simply taps the tag against the contactless reader at the till to collect loyalty points or redeem points against their spend. The more the customer uses the ZapaTAG the more points they earn and the greater the rewards.
Speaking at the launch of the scheme, Chris Mason, managing director of AIBMS said: “We developed this solution so our SME retail customers can operate a loyalty programme that competes with loyalty card schemes offered by larger retail outlets. Offering points and rewards is a compelling incentive to encourage people to shop locally and with this solution, retailers can look after their greatest asset – their customers. We have had great success with our pilot customers across Dublin which included a dog grooming service, a florist and a restaurant – proving that AIBMS loyaltyplus is suitable for all types of shops and services.”
Points earned in a business are only valid for rewards in that business. Businesses also have access to marketing tools and can send SMS and email offers to registered customers.
Mason continued: “The downturn has meant that independent businesses need to look at new ways to compete with competition from larger shopping destinations.”
Trevor Kearns, manager of The Market, a small supermarket in Stepaside, Dublin, said that loyalty schemes were “very costly to set up for small businesses” and that is why they have not been done before. Although Kearns had heard of the AIB scheme, he was already considering a loyalty scheme through the Payzone terminal already in the shops. “The fact that the terminals are already in place means that it is very cost effective to set up,” he said. The way it will work is that customers’ points can be redeemed for HMV or Eason’s vouchers. He also explained that Superquinn were currently trialling a loyalty card that offered points that could be redeemed for One4All vouchers and it was proving hugely successful with customers.