Irish traders launch town rewards card
Independent businesses in Carrigaline, Co. Cork have launched a town-wide loyalty card.
The organizers of the Irish scheme say the card is targeted at competing with larger nearby shopping destinations.
Cardholders can use one card to collect points in multiple local businesses and redeem them for a range of rewards.
Traders in Carrigaline say the trend towards larger destination shopping combined with the downturn in the economy is making circumstances difficult for their businesses.
Customers can collect their free card from a participating business and show the card anytime they shop in a participating premises. Once the customer has enough points earned they can choose a reward including discounts and free gifts.
The Carrigaline card is operating under the localrewards.ie banner. This is a service which has been specifically set up for town cards by myrewardcard.ie the Cork-based developer of the technology. The company developed a fully hosted service that they originally provided directly to independent businesses who were looking for more power and information than could be provided by the stamped loyalty cards that are typically used.
“I had seen the proliferation of cardboard stamped cards that did nothing for the business issuing them,” said the CEO of myrewardcard.ie, Brian O’Connell. “It was obvious that smaller businesses would benefit from a reward system that showed them the same sort of transaction patterns that the supermarkets see. So we built it.”
The service requires an internet connection and browser to operate and removes the need for clients to update software or make database backups. Participating businesses can issue their own points and their customers can register their cards online to see their transaction history.
O’Connell added: “Once the cards are in wide use we are looking at promotions such as draws for customers who use the card in 5 different businesses in 1 month or rewards for the person who has the ten thousand transaction. These will be organised by the the local traders, and will bring the real strength of a town Reward Card to the fore.”
The Carrigaline rewards program is starting with eight independent businesses including bookshops, shoe stores, tyre centers and pet shops. More will be accepting the card over the coming weeks.