Could a Loyalty Program Save Raley’s Stores?

Raley’s Bel-Air supermarket in Woodland, Calif., originally slated for closure, may stay open after all due to the success of a new loyalty program.

The supermarket was scheduled to close mid-October along with a Raley's store in Pittsburg, Calif.

According to published reports, Raley’s officials said a new lease agreement with landlord Sequoia Management Co., and the success of its new customer loyalty program have given the supermarket chain more time to operate the store.

Raley's last week launched its first-ever customer loyalty and rewards program across the company's 120 Raley's, Bel Air and Nob Hill Foods stores.  Called "Something Extra," the program is more tailored to individual shopper habits than a traditional price-discount card like those offered by many grocers.

The program was developed over three years in partnership with dunnhumbyUSA, a joint venture of the Kroger Co. and London-based retail/branding data company dunnhumby, and according to Raley’s is the only program of its kind on the West Coast.

The program awards one point for every $1 spent on eligible products. Extra points can be earned for buying special items and participating in various promotions. Points transfer to quarterly reward vouchers that can be used toward savings on future purchases.

On top of this, shopper purchase behavior analysis leads to more individualized benefits for each shopper. Raley’s expects the program to provide much needed help against increasing competition, and may even help spare additional stores from closing.

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