Same. I guess they’ve deactivated it for the time being. Perhaps shaming the product and questioning the validity of dedicating product development time to it might have had something to do with it
It does make me wonder if this was wasted development effort - provide a feature that is already provided elsewhere; with no obvious advantage.
…it’s not like it’s a product that hasn’t been mentioned in countless updates to the product roadmap since the Crowdcube investment.
I don’t disagree with you entirely as it does seem like an unnecessary product but there’s been plenty of time to raise it before it went into production. However, it points to a wider problem I see forming with Curve. A partial lack of understanding of the overall market (Loyalty is a really messy and chaotic landscape - more on that later) and a more active move by the market to restrict their own card products being enveloped by Curve’s “one-card-solution“. This week I’ve received my fourth card provider notice saying that it will treat all curve fronted transactions as cash handling making Curve useless.
Store Loyalty Card a CRM insider’s view
Beyond scan and store barcodes there’s not much more you can do with loyalty cards. Ultimately, it’s a physical identifier (generally a card with a unique barcode/QR code) thats scannable by the POS system and links it to customer records.
Every retailer implements their solution slightly differently. But generally the aim is to create a solution in house to keep costs down and minimal consumer data processing with third parties. So the cheapest route to market is a cheap plastic card with a barcode. For example, a major dept store chain paid to replace all 21,000 barcode scanners at its POS tills merely to enable them to scan it’s loyalty card because they’re original barcode scanner kit were IBM tech from the 80s and couldn’t read the barcode. So it’s a heavily fragmented and potholed landscape.
Add to the mix more modern non barcode related solutions that exist like MasterCard Loyalty Connected which enables the customer to add their preferred payment card and it’s recognised by the merchant POS via API. So no loyalty card necessary. But it’s expensive as it’s a third party solution, so carries additional overheads for the retailer plus retailers hate updating/upgrading POS systems as they’re a high risk closed network.
Who’s responsible for bringing order to all these various systems?
Ultimately Curve isn’t going to be able to create a bespoke solution for each retailers application of loyalty/customer identification. That’s why Apple makes retailers conform to Wallet standards and the retailers chooses to do so or not because of their technical ability or overall laziness to fulfil their customers desires.
If you want something more nuanced then it’s something that you should probably take up with your retailer of preference (and loyalty). The amount of value they get from using your data massively outweighs the expenditure they put in to identifying you. Propensity modelling, Personalization, Rex engines, all things basically to make you spend more and are made possible by leveraging your big data from the permission given/enabled by your loyalty card.
What should happen next
Personally, I think the functionality should be launched and allowed and pick up the niche users that will tinker with it and find it useful, and move on to developing key products.
Curve should do this by revisiting its roadmap and ratify it with investors, and subsequently beta testers to ensure the product ideas are still desired/needed.