News Feature | March 19, 2015

7-11 Launches Mobile Updates, Bill Pay

Source: Innovative Retail Technologies

By Brianna Ahearn, contributing writer

7-11 Mobile Rewards

Popular convenience store chain 7-11 has just launched their own mobile rewards app to help consumers find more ways to get rewarded for the purchases they make every day at 7-11. In a press release issued on March 9, 7-11 announced the arrival of 7Rewards, a loyalty program that rewards customers with free beverages after a certain number is purchased. 7-11 is known for its beverage selections, including the famous Big Gulp Slurpee, and that's one reason the retailer wanted to rewarded their customers' loyalty with free drinks.

“7-Eleven is a beverage destination for millions of Americans, with over 60 percent of our customers including a beverage with each purchase.  We know that millennials like to have plenty of choices and, hands down, 7Rewards offers more beverage variety than any other rewards program,” says Laura Gordon, 7-Eleven vice president of marketing and brand innovation.

7Rewards is now available as a free download in the Apple iTunes Store or Google's Play Store and functions the same as the traditional “punch cards.” Rather than a cashier punching a card with each new cup or refill purchased, the cashier scans a barcode in the customer's app, and the customer automatically receives credit there with a star icon indicating each purchase. Once the customer has accumulated six stars, the app displays a notification of their free beverage. 7Rewards also features a social media option where users can share their rewards via Facebook and Twitter.

The 7Rewards program doesn't have any size restrictions, with all applicable beverages available for any size purchase, and not limited to one purchase per day. Customers also aren't limited to one size when redeeming the offer for a free drink, letting them make six small coffee purchases, and be rewarded with a free seventh drink that's size large.

By offering a new digital option for beverage rewards, 7-11 has made it easy for their customers to get rewarded by including an app on their phones that they often have ready at a moment's notice. It's not the only digital change for their customers the retailer has made either, as evidenced by new coverage by TheDrum.com from the “What is a Brand Now Anyway” panel from South by Southwest the week of March 16. Gordon shared that the convenience store retailer is also offering a new digital app, in a new move to help 7-11 become more than just a destination for food and beverage purchases, but a destination that offers customers complete convenience. The app is for the “unbanked,” individuals who are unable to obtain a traditional banking account; an estimated 30% of the population.

At press time, no information about the app's compatibility with Apple or Android devices was available, nor was the app's title. Once launched, customers will be able to link a 7-11 account through the computer, and then pay for their shopping in-store with the linked funds. “7-11 is working to go from being a convenience store to creating convenience moments that in turn help the brand be more relevant every day for our customers,” says Gordon.