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Pick n Pay changes Smart Shopper points system

By Angelique Ruzicka

Pick n Pay’s rewards programme, Smart Shopper, has received an overhaul in the way in which points are calculated. Much to the ire of some subscribers of the loyalty scheme the points awarded for shopping at the retailer have halved.

Prior to the change shoppers got R1 back for every R100 spent but now (as from 30 March, 2017) customers get R1 for every R200 spent. This effectively slashes the cash back rate from 1% to 0.5%.

David North, group executive for strategic and corporate affairs argues that the changes made to Smart Shopper are as a result of what customers want. He points out that customers now also benefitting from personalised discounts which they will be able to redeem in store. 

“Many South African consumers are having to cut back on all but the absolute essentials. Customers are telling us that the best way Smart Shopper can help is to give real discounts when they shop on the products they buy most often. With the new Smart Shopper, Pick n Pay will be offering 30-million personal discounts every week – or three discounts per customer every Thursday for 10 million customers,” he said. 

He added: "The initiatives we have announced in the past couple of weeks - our lower prices and the improvements to Smart Shopper - demonstrate our commitment to give customers more value. When looking at the changes to Smart Shopper, customers can be assured that every Rand and more is being given back to them through lower prices and more and better discounts." 

What can you get out of Smart Shopper now?

The retailer said it is making changes to its Smart Shopper loyalty programme to make it more rewarding and more personal. As Pick n Pay has been paying attention to what you buy through its reward scheme it will use this information to email customers on a weekly basis with personalised discounts with instant cash off. It also announced that it will be investing R0.5-billion in price cuts for their customers across 1,300 lines.

Smart Shopper was introduced in 2011 and has been popular among shoppers with 20 swipes going through Pick n Pay tills every second, according to the retailer.

“The aim is to give customers over R500 in personal discounts over the year, focusing on products they already buy. By doing this, Pick n Pay will be giving customers more value from the new Smart Shopper,” said North. 

Points are valid for one year, however, Smart Shopper points that have already been accumulated will not be affected.

Reaction on social media

Customers took to Facebook and Twitter as the retailer made the announcement via email and Facebook. Some lamented that they had not received any emails to date about the personalised discounts, to which Pick n Pay encouraged customers to contact them to find a solution and to update their details with the call centre.

Reaction over the slashing of the cash back scheme and the weekly discount email was mixed. One shopper highlighted: “I don't think this is more beneficial for shoppers who shop on a monthly basis, means I would lose out on 3 weeks of vouchers.”

On Twitter the reaction was mixed too. One person tweeted the benefits of the reward scheme: “The Pick n Pay Smart Shopper card has been good to me a couple of times, buying me airtime and stuff. But others lamented how ‘cutting Smart Shopper is such a bad decision’, while a few threatened to boycott the retailer by shopping at rival stores.

Smart Shopper credit facility

This is not the only change the retailer has made to Smart Shopper. Earlier this year Pick n Pay announced a new credit facility available via their Smart Shopper card. The Store account is not a generic credit card and does not operate on the ATM network and can only be used in Pick n Pay stores.

For more on the credit facility, click here.

  Handy tip: If you need to shop on credit but are not happy with the interest rate you are charged, compare credit cards through Justmoney here.

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