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  1. #1
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    Default Store Loyalty Cards

    Does anybody have a supermarket or high street loyalty card?

    These cards are evil

    The store gives them to you under the pretence that the store in question values your custom and wants you to save money but here is the reality.

    You loyalty card is used as a spying device to gather information about your shopping habits. Swiping it through the machine at the supermarket entrance (supposedly to see what offers are avilable to you) lets the store know what time you entered. Using the card at the checkout lets the store know exactly what products you bought and what time you left the store. Without the loyalty card they can only tell which products were sold, not which products were sold to individual people.

    So lets have a quick recap. The store knows what time you entered and what time you departed and how much you spent and on which products. Lets not forget that they also have all your credit card details.

    OK. This might not seem like much of a big deal but they can also get your picture from CCTV and add that to your 'file'.

    The idea behind all this is that the store in question builds up a good profile of it's customers which helps to determine ways in which the store can attain maximum profit. There is nothing wrong with this, everybody is entitled to make a profit but does anybody else think it is seriously out of order for these places to steal that information from us (or more accurately trick the info out of us) instead of telling us what their intentions are?

    Surely, at the very least our privacy is being invaded. Debate this if you like but one single factor will always come into play...

    Nobody gives away free products!!

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    In addition, something I just thought of...

    In the UK many food supermarkets now have petrol stations where you can also use your loyalty card.

    Now they no which type of fuel you buy, how regularly you buy it, with the garage CCTV they can tell which type of car you drive, your registration etc.

    Using your registration number and a standard HPI check there is no end to the motoring info they can gather about you.

    Burn your loyalty card, it isn't worth it just to get 2 for 1 on a tin of baked beans ;)

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    Sorry Rob, but will have to agree & disagree. I personally canít be bothered with them, but my brother & family use Tesco card, & make about £400-500 per year on them. Now this is not using the points at Tescoís, but using them for other purchases. Thereís lots of other ways you can use the points on these cards.
    He has only built up his points by using it for his own weekly shop & also his sonís familyís shopping. This all goes on the same bill.
    My brother wonít fly (wimp) so he takes the ferry from Plymouth to the north of Spain every year with the car. His Tesco points pay for most of this trip, which is about £400.00 for the return crossing. Not a bad saving!
    The only thing I donít like about these type of schemes, is that they tend to start knowing a whole lot about you.
    Defiantly big brother is out there!

    Chris.

    PS. Will start practicing with the golf.

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    OK, so, lets say that your brother has saved £45 per month. That is a very small price for any super market chain to pay for the info they now ave about your brother and his family. Especially since that is not actually money in your borthers pocket. That would be far too expensive for the cahain to supply to every customer how ever. From the point of view of saving money your brother thinks he's getting a good deal. From the point of view of stores look at it like this.

    They buy a tin of beans for 5p and sell it for 25p. Of course they can offer buy one get one free because they still make at least 10p profit per can. They dont give away anything. When it comes to air miles and money off fuel the same principals apply. They buy 10 million air miles for 1 million pounds the make 20 million on selling products to people who think they are getting a good deal.

    The loyalty cards ARE a way of gethering customer info. I got my info from working for a chain of stores that has loyalty cards. British customers know them as GAME, American customers know them as ELECTRONICS BOUTIQUE. The sole reason for bringing in the cards was so that they could identify more easily with the people spending money in-store. What age group, what lifestyle etc. Lets face it, without loyalty cards they would only know which products are sold, thats it, no other info could be gathered except credit card numbers and even if they have your credit card number it is of no marketing use unless they know about you personally. It really is all done so that they no which sectors they should spened money in and which sectors bring the most profit back to them.

    Good luck with the golf hehe ;)

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    Yep! Totally agree. Thereís only one winner in the respect of who earns out of us.
    They got a system running in Germany of security tags that they put into things that you buy like clothes & other items. This tag is in the label of clothing. Yes! Itís to stop thieving, but when you go to anther store with this system in place with that item that has the tag in it. They also starts to know your travelling habits.

    Cheers

    Chris.

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    doesnt really bother me to much to be honest ..its not really that different from the info you gather building a website about the traffic and the stats page IP addresss...maybe a bit more targeted ..but the same all the same lol ...everybodys doin it . sign of the times eh?
    Click the link below for page guidelines (no more sideways scroll)

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    Doesnt matter to you? maybe not in the form of internet traffic bots and IP address gathering but when it comes to your personal day to say info and knowledge of your family surely you'd think twice?

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    You think the register didn't already know everything you purchased? And if you shopped using a credit card, it was all recorded whether you had a loyalty card or not? So why not get the discount that comes with one?

    I dislike "big brother" in many things - but this one doesn't bother me at all.

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    Quote Originally Posted by Bethers
    You think the register didn't already know everything you purchased? And if you shopped using a credit card, it was all recorded whether you had a loyalty card or not? So why not get the discount that comes with one?

    I dislike "big brother" in many things - but this one doesn't bother me at all.
    Women, look at it this way.. I am sooo sorry to be blunt in this next bit but there isnt a better way to highlight the type of personal info that they DO collect about you and your family......

    Female sanitary products...

    Without the loyalty card they can only tell which brands get sold the most and lets face it, sales of this type of product must be pretty consistent so there is no way of telling anything about the customers that are buying them.

    With the loyalty card they know all about you, your address, your time in store, your preferred shopping day, your menstrual cycle for gods sake, how much of this product you need, which brand is preferred and what address it is going to.

    Now then, all sounds weird but... There isnt a better way to identify with their customers than doing this and the supermarket sector is highly competitive so every one of those chains wants a s much info as they can about their customer (speaking from experience).

    It is very big brother as you said and it bothers me a lot hahaha. big brother is bad in all forms and Bethers... it might not be bad now but wait until new technology arrives.

    Anybody seen Minority Report with Tom Cruise? At one part of the movie he goes into a GAP store because he needs a change of clothes for a disguise, an automated system at the door scans his eye and a nice big audible welcome message pops up saying "HIIIII MR X WELCOME BACK, HOW WERE THOSE JEANS THAT YOU PURCHASED LAST WEEK?"

    In time to come that will be happening to you because that is the future of loyalty cards.... and like I said, nothing is free. buying something for £2 and getting one for free means that both those products are only worth £2 for the pair. They just tell you that you are getting one for free because they know you are a sucker!

    Same principal... Furniture stores, sofas.... ALWAYS have a sale on, ALWAYS 30% off this 40% off that... Why? Because that is the actual price of the product.. The big price that they had supposedly cut by 40% was made up so that they could tell you you were getting a deal when in reality they are earning soooo much profit from the sale and you are more likely to buy because you actually think that they are doing you a favour because you're a sucker LOL
    ;)

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    And another thing LOL, do you think these companies spend millions every year on magnetic card production, magnetic card readers, relevant software, marketing and advertising just so that you can get discounts? Hehehehehe that should be evidence enough of what these cards are actually used for.

    :)

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    Quote Originally Posted by FPRob
    And another thing LOL, do you think these companies spend millions every year on magnetic card production, magnetic card readers, relevant software, marketing and advertising just so that you can get discounts? Hehehehehe that should be evidence enough of what these cards are actually used for.

    :)
    You make a lot of excellent posts here, but I have to disagree wholeheartedly with your entire argument on this subject. (I will preface this by saying that it's entirely possible an unscrupulous company could do the things you've suggested, but a reputable company won't.)

    I've worked in the US retail industry for quite a few years now and I can tell you that the reason companies use discount cards is to build loyalty. The idea is that if a person needs to stop by a grocery store (or whatever the need) he or she will forego a store that may be more convenient to access in favor of one in which he or she can get a discount or build a reward on the purchase.

    Do companies spend millions of dollars on this technology? YES. But they don't do it to steal your data, they do it to make sure you spend your money in their stores. Why would a company care about a woman's menstrual cycle or any other type of info along those lines? What would be the benefit? Are they going to send a happy little message saying, "Congrats on your latest period!"? Or, for the guy who purchases a pack of *******, "Woohoo! We're happy for you! Is it a girlfriend or just a fling?"

    I've worked for some of the largest retailers in the US, many of which offered discount cards and nothing was ever asked of the customer but very basic information, such as name and address, and this is for mailing purposes since most cards offer rewards in the form of mailed coupons and the like beyond the discounts available in the store.

    I have never seen a card, whether in a store I worked or one I shopped, that required me to give any personal details such as my Social Security number or credit card number. If I were ever asked for that type of info just to get a discount, I'd happily skip the discount.

    I will add, lastly, that your view of the retail industry is very, very flawed. Companies aren't offering huge discounts after taking huge markups - that's illegal and closely regulated. They are offering huge discounts because the global economy is weak as a result of many variables and they need any sales they can get.

    Conspiracy theories make for good fodder, but they don't hold water.

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    Noooo Racefan I think you are wrong. I have also worked in the retail industry for an American company in Britain. The people directly above you will say that the loyalty cards are for the sake of gaining loyalty from customers because they want you and your staff to offer them in the correct way to customers. Plausible deniability. But I have been to our Manager conferences and heard company executives talking differently, Ive heard them saying to each other and the staff directly below them that the cards are doing wonders for customer profiling and particularly well for helping them guage age groups in different areas of the country.

    I've heard that first hand so I woldnt even call it a conspiracy. I call it a reality and as for not holding water. People are not reading my posts. I have heard and seen all this first hand :)

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    I agree with Racefan - and I owned a store for 10 years - we didn't have the current "high tech" ways of keeping track - but yep, we knew what our customers bought and when they bought it - just like the old-fashioned mom and pop stores of old. We would have coffee ready with the right cream and sugar for someone when we saw them drive in - etc etc - only then we used our brains to process - sometimes a note card file. We knew where everyone lived - and knew their names - and this didn't require credit cards. If something funny happened, we knew who to call.

    In the old days, this was called being neighborly. The stores now need the loyalty cards because of the larger numbers of people, etc - but they are trying to brings some of the neighborly quality back. I'm all for it. And they aren't doing it to find out all about you - and them knowing what brand and when I buy a female product wouldn't bother me at all :)

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    I agree. it is easy to apply a good level of service and know your customers in a small one off privately owned store but as you said in large chain stores with millions of customers per year it can't be done.

    What I cant get over is the fact that I keep saying I have first hand experience of this situation and still you wont even consider the possibilty.

    Things are not given a way for free, its common knowledge, information is worth everytyhing. It is worth an unbelievable amount to the people who are collecting it and you wont even consider the fact that it is one of the main reasons for loyalty cards (even if by some fluke it isnt the main reason).

    Here is something else that I had forgotten abvout until yesterday. British customers will be aware of Sainsbury's, one of the biggest supermarkets in this country. A while back we stopped using them because they screwed us up real bad when trying to use their online shopping/delivery service. We lost almost £50 (approx $80). After about a month of not using the store and of course that meant not using the loyalty card we received vouchers through the post to the amount of almost £100. The vouchers were for exactly the kind of foods we would buy.

    My question is how would they know what kind of stuff to send us if they didnt have a profile of us and our shopping history in their stores? It would be impossible.

    I promise you this is not a conspiracy and yep, maybe you do save some money and get a few free things but that is a small price for them to pay in exchange for the info that they have about you. Also not withstanding the fact (as I mentioned before) that the stuff you think you are getting for free isnt free, they just label it as such so that customers think it is.

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    But, why is it bad that they know what you purchase and gear the vouchers they send you towards those? I'd much prefer to get coupons and vouchers that I will use than ones I won't use.

    And, no, nothing is free - it's a part of the marketing plan - which should be a percentage of your gross sales as much as paying any other bills, etc - how it gets spent is up to the individual companies.

    I know that I have a store that sells multiple items. When I do email to my customers - I have a few different ones - and target them to the customers based on their past purchases. I think this makes sense - and it brings me back a higher percentage of customers than when I do one to all. Yep, takes me more time - but is well worth it for me. And, yep, I give them coupons usually for a discount - and try to gear it towards something I think they will use. Same thing - without a loyalty card - just from my customer database.

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    And all I was saying in my original post is that supermarkets could not do as you suggested in your last post without the use of loyalty cards. thats all I said!!!

    You just spent two days arguing against my point only to say "yes, the loyalty card is a good way of info gathering in order to market things in better way".

    Pointless as far as I can see.

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    I'm sorry that you dislike different points of view so much. I was not disagreeing with what the cards do - I was disagreeing that they are evil - which is what you stated in the first message.

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    id just like to say i dont have anything to hide so i dont give a monkeys i say let the retailers know about me i have no freinds so at least some one is interested in me and i like having my pic took bring on big brother i say, i need looking after, i was in the army so that might be why? any way if some one realy wanted gain information for any underhand reason about me or any one else they could go through my bins and have all th eidentity they need to take over my life so in the end its all ***** starry thats right starry you thought i said a rude word then didnt you but i know there are children tuning in to this frequency ( ive just turned my webcam round the other way cos i heard you can hack ito them i should know ive got the progrmae lol) spooky
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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    Originally Posted by FPRob
    Its not that I dislike differing points of view Bethers. I just dislike being told I am wrong when I am posting things after first hand experience.




    I don't think people have said that you are wrong. You have experienced whatever you have experienced. However, after all is said and done, your opinion is just that - your opinion and as such is subjective. It's based on your way of looking at the world and tidbits of information that you decide to gather as you go along your merry way. Others have different ways of looking at things and see the same things in a totally different perspective. Your opinion is heavily slanted by your experience and the same goes for everyone else. What about the people that have been to conferences and heard a different viewpoint? One can hear the same argument a hundred times, it doesn't mean that it's right.


    But I have been to our Manager conferences and heard company executives talking differently,
    Ive heard them saying to each other and the staff directly below them that the cards are doing wonders for customer profiling and particularly well for helping them guage age groups in different areas of the country.

    I've heard that first hand so I woldnt even call it a conspiracy. I call it a reality and as for not holding water. People are not reading my posts. I have heard and seen all this first hand :)




    I honestly dont mind that kind of posting/replying when I do say something that is conjecture, guess work, conspiracy based but surely you know what it is like to be argued with when you know yourself that what you are saying is completely correct!?



    Okay, you have 'heard' this stuff. I hear stuff everyday, especially from the media. It doesn't mean that I believe it and especially don't accept it as gospel! I’ll can visit a bar, anytime, and hear people ranting on about subjects for which they have little or no understanding. Expressing views on something they read in a newspaper that day. It doesn’t mean that the original article or they are right. You heard other peoples' opinions and their 'take' on the subject using 'managerial' lingo. It's sensible to take this into consideration when forming opinions about subjects. But it is also advisable to seek out other viewpoints and information. Which is, I believe, how you should have viewed this thread.

    Join the club! Half of the rest of the world think that they are right about everything too! LOL

    Take a look at some of my other posts, you will see that one of my pet hates is not being allowed to share a point of view or being banned for doing so so I would never dislike the fact that somebody is sharing their personal view.

    You could have easily said "I dont think the cards are evil" and I wouldnt have bveen nearly so offended.


    And how can they not be evil? They are used as a spying device to collect info about you but the card distributos in this case supermarkets are blatantly telling you that they are for something else.




    Actually, I believe that most people, who use these cards, are more than aware that information about spending habits is gathered each time they are swiped. Most people know and are not, in the least little bit, bothered by this fact. We do live in an age where information is gathered, traded and kept for all sorts of reasons, but it certainly isn’t the supermarkets and stores that you should be spending your energy worrying about!

    You me and RaceFan might have enough common sense about us to realise the truth behind what the cards are for but most people dont see that, they genuinely do think the card is for savings which means that the wool i sbeing pulled over their eyes and they will never have any idea of the personal info that is being logged about them. Like I said, this is just the start of a big snowball that is rolling down a hill and when they figuere out ways to use these cards to gether more info (that they cannot yet gather) they will do it and eventualy our entire lives will be logged in a computer at the store head office :)
    Now, this is where you started to get my goat. Where do you get off making sweeping statements like that, Rob? You should credit people with a little more intelligence, maybe you could learn a little from listening to the opinions of some of these lesser mortals. I am all for a good conspiracy theory, but put this into some sort of perspective, my friend.

    So your orginal point wasnt about the cards not being evil and i know you dont care if they know what products you are buying that isnt the point. The point is the other personal information they get from knowing which products you buy and when.
    In my humble opinion, the cards are not evil. The reasons for the cards existing are not evil unless, of course, you view capitalism as a form of evil. People enter into these agreements with a full knowledge of what they are about. I, for another, do not feel threatened, in any way whatsoever, by the information kept about my spending habits. The Data Protection Act ensures that my information cannot be used for anything other than what I have given my express permission for. Heck, if them understanding my spending habits ensures that the stuff I want to buy is always on the shelf and I get to receive relevant coupons, through the mail that save me a little extra, then I’m a happy bunny.


    anyway, it doesnt matter. Almost every thread that i have posted in the last 48 hours has been shot down for one reason or another despite them being from personal knowledge or from genuine interest. Im getting used to it.



    I don’t find this last bit at all surprising, for some reason. You have a harsh style and come across as very argumentative sometimes. People will, more than likely, react in a similar way.

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  20. #20
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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    Talking about loyalty cards & marketing strategies! Have vodahost got any deals coming up, like the cheap domains & alike. You can use my info to send me a discounted package if you wish. I really donít mind if it saves me money. How about a 2 for one deal on domains, with a free jar of coffee? Only pulling your leg. (Forget the coffee)

    Thanks

    Chris.

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    Quote Originally Posted by Collectors-info
    Talking about loyalty cards & marketing strategies! Have vodahost got any deals coming up, like the cheap domains & alike. You can use my info to send me a discounted package if you wish. I really donít mind if it saves me money. How about a 2 for one deal on domains, with a free jar of coffee? Only pulling your leg. (Forget the coffee)

    Thanks

    Chris.

    LMAO!!


    Don't know if it will work for you, but nice try! LOL

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    Default Re: Store Loyalty Cards

    Quote Originally Posted by racefan20
    LMAO!!




    Don't know if it will work for you, but nice try! LOL
    Race & all! I am Sorry! I must have terrible morals for posting this here? Nah! Sod it. Let go for 3 for 1 domains? What you say Voda?

    Chris. (The terrible) (The loyal) (The mediator) (The unscrupulous)

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