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Enterprise Retail / Extend the value of POS with Apps

Points: A New Currency

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Editorial Team
Executive Summary
Points: A New Currency

The Verifone Points Redemption app is turning rewards into everyday purchases.

Rewards-based programs are on the rise. FIS™, the world’s largest financial tech solutions provider, reported recently seeing a 26% growth in these kinds of programs, with the average American participating in 29 different ones.

But here’s the caveat.

There’s still $50 billion worth of open reward viability. So, people are participating in rewards programs, but they don’t always redeem their points. The reason for this, according to Daniel Poswolsky, Head of Value-Added Services, is two-fold.

“There are a lot of larger ticket items that people can’t get,” Poswolsky explains. “People accrue a smaller number of points, can’t access these larger rewards, and simply forget about the points they have.” There’s also a procedural issue with accessing points. Often times, participants need to go through several steps before reaping the benefits of the rewards points they’ve accrued.

This was the impetus behind the Verifone Points Redemption app.

“With this app,” says Poswolsky, “we wanted to make points redemption a seamless experience that presents consumers with an easy decision and, most importantly, won’t slow down the line.”

At the POS, the app uses FIS technology to check if you have rewards points from your card provider. The app then asks if you’d like any available points to count toward your purchase. The process is safe, simple, and benefits everyone involved.

We’re turning points into a new currency.

Cassie Boutelle VP of Loyalty Product Development and Strategy at FIS

“We’re turning points into a new currency,” says Cassie Boutelle, VP of Loyalty Product Development and Strategy at FIS. Poswolsky agrees, stating, “This is an untapped payment method that Verifone is bringing to the terminal in a simple, frictionless way.”

It started as a pilot program with POS devices at BP gas stations. Consumers were given a prompt at checkout asking if they’d like to use their rewards points to discount their purchase on gasoline.

“Consumers would continue to come back to BP to get the discount, and they began spending more money and using their cards more—knowing they would accrue more points,” says Boutelle.

The banks loved it because consumers used their cards more, and consumers loved it because they got discounts. Being able to seamlessly use points at the POS gives these often under-utilized rewards programs more value.

The next logical step was to bring this technology to more places: retail, food service, hospitality, etc.

“Which is why it’s great that we have such a good relationship with Verifone,” says Boutelle.

No matter the merchant or the location, Verifone devices with access to the App Marketplace can download FIS’s app and start participating immediately.

“This really shows the power of Verifone’s Commerce Platform. It’s unique and showcases how the Commerce Platform allows merchants to enable the same types of experiences that have historically only been available to online retailers.” says Poswolsky. “It opens the door for more alternative forms of payments.”

How soon will you be able to use rewards points at your favorite store? It’s still unclear, but so far, adoption rate is strong. “We have 31 financial institutions participating,” says Boutelle. “That’s nine million participating consumers. We’re on track to have 23 million participating consumers by Q2.”