Yesterday, I stopped by my local grocery store (Price Chopper, Louisburg, KS) to pick up a last minute item needed for dinner. My 15-year old daughter decided to stay in the car and listen to music.
I ran into the store, grabbed my intended item and headed for the cash registers.
On the way, I spotted a sign indicating my favorite salsa was on sale. So on the way past, I grabbed two jars.
At the cash register, the clerk asked me for my “club card”.
Unfortunately, my card was on my key chain…which was in my car.
Also unfortunate, the great price on salsa was only available with my card.
I asked the clerk if I could provide my phone number or something else to get the sale price.
The answer I was expecting: “I’m sorry, we have a policy, blah, blah, blah”
The answer I would have liked: “Sure, we can swipe a generic card, or some other method of giving you the right price and treating you like the valuable customer.”
The answer I got: “No”
That’s it. No apology, no explanation. Just a “no” and a glare.
Based on the history of less than stellar customer service I have with this store, the response should not have surprised me.
Needless to say, I told her to forget the salsa, rang up the one item I came for in the first place, and don’t plan on going back.
This store lost a sale right then, and a LOT of sales in the future. All because I didn’t have their stupid little card.
I live in a rural area, so the next closest grocery store (which doesn’t require a club card) is several miles further way than this one. However, I’ll be making the trek from now on. The service isn’t much better, but at least the price is the price without having to have a membership card.
So, I’ve had it with my local grocery store, and I’ve had it with club cards. They serve no value to me as a customer, and are an invasion of privacy to boot. (Check out this news story).
There are now groups of people boycotting club cards, and I’m all for it.
I’m sending a link to this post the store headquarters. It will be interesting to see how (or if) they respond.
What are YOUR thoughts about grocery store membership cards?
A bigger question: What might you be doing in YOUR business which was designed to be a “customer benefit”, but is really turning them away? Think about it.