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Survey: Shoppers want grocery, not gas, discounts

Survey: Shoppers want grocery, not gas, discounts

U.S. grocery shoppers are no longer pumped up about gas rewards, according to survey results released Tuesday by Loyalty One Consulting.

The results of the survey indicate that supermarkets that offer fuel discounts should expand their rewards to include grocery items and other perks, the firm said.

The survey of 1,000 U.S. consumers, which took place in March, found that 72% of consumers would prefer that grocers offer discounts in the aisle instead of at the pump. The preference is strongest in the densely populated Northeast, where 81% said they’d opt for grocery discounts over gas savings. It’s weakest, but still noteworthy, in the West, where 65% favored grocery discounts.

“Too many grocers have become complacent with a one-offer-fits-all mentality about loyalty. Not only is a generic fuel offer not relevant to all customers, it equates to untargeted marketing spending undermining ROI,” Dennis Armbruster , managing partner for LoyaltyOne Consulting, said in a statement.

“Fuel reward programs still have relevance and value, but our research and client engagements confirm they're also not a cure-all for building loyalty,” he added. “Progressive grocers need to heed the signs. Few can afford to not leverage shopper data and explore alternatives or additions to their fuel programs to engage more customer segments, improve their marketing response and derive significant returns.”

Other key findings from the survey:

  • 62% of respondents said they’d switch to grocery rewards if a grocer offering gas rewards gave them the option of a different type of reward.
  • 24% said they’d stay with gas rewards.
  • 8% said they’d opt for travel rewards.
  • 6% chose electronics, housewares or apparel.
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