Product Recall Automation and Customer Loyalty

Posted by on Sep 16, 2010 in Blog, Tech News | No Comments

Two pieces of news the other day caught our eye.

First, Kroger reported strong quarterly earnings by “focusing on service to keep its current customers instead of slashing prices to attract new ones”  – a core business philosophy we heartily endorse. Kroger has spent the last several years growing its loyalty program using customer purchase history and interests to deliver personalized marketing messages and promotions; this really underscores the legitimacy of customized messaging for grocers of all sizes.

Second, Capitol Hill has now produced a bill on recall legislation has that would require food retailers to notify shoppers about recalled products. A number of retailers have recently beaten their chests seeking recognition for sending emails to all of their customers during a recall.

Narrowing the scope of these messages to only those customers who are known to have purchased a recalled product and have opted into email notifications is a fundamental starting point, but what is the customer supposed to do with the recalled product? In our experience, this is a tricky question that often leaves customers thankful to know they have a recalled product, but unclear about what to do with the information.

An effective solution that drives customer affinity for the retailers and benefits existing loyalty customers is one that not only notifies consumers that they have purchased a recalled product, but also informs them that they have store credit loaded on to their loyalty card to purchase a replacement.  No receipt required, since the underlying technology knows which guests are within the window of entitlement, and no confusion about what to do with the recalled product thanks to the instant credit.

Accelitec has a proprietary solution tying store credits to customer loyalty cards for recalls in just such circumstances. Retailers can begin delivering this important customer service benefit without being required by federal legislation, and potentially turn an unfortunate recall into a positive experience for their loyal customers – doing so may actually help them win new customers, as well.

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