For quite some time now, Sears and sister retailer Kmart have significantly lagged the retail industry in performance. We even did a post on the problems with a photo montage.
Now, Sears has decided to incentivize customers in a rather unique manner (for big box stores) by participating in the Shop Your Way Rewards program: “Shop. Earn Points. And the next time you shop, redeem your Points to save money. It’s that simple.”
Click the image to visit the Web page.
However, many critics are skeptical of this program as too little, too late. For example, as reported by Multichannel Merchant:
“Robert Passikoff, founder and president of Brand Keys, said all Sears has done is trade away coupons with points. He said the Shop Your Way loyalty program doesn’t surprise, but that it is ‘a self-fulfilling prophecy.’ ‘I don’t see this as the new penicillin of the digital age,’ said Passikoff. He added that Sears has become a category placeholder. For a lot of years, Sears didn’t know what it wanted to be when it grew up – it went for selling tools, then it wanted to do the softer side, then it turned around and tried to position itself yet another way.”
“’After a while you don’t need them,’ Passikoff said. “This was the nature of change in terms of an industry that is losing more and more to online sales.” The issue is that a lot of people join loyalty programs because it is easy to sign up for. But having it help change behavior toward the brand is the hard part. ‘It is all brand centered, what the brand stands for, and Sears stands essentially for last century’s old clothing,” according to Passikoff.”