The Fuel Rewards® program has launched a new mobile application that extends the reach of its national coalition loyalty program for its five million members. By embedding loyalty throughout the mobile experience, Fuel Rewards members can link their loyalty, credit, debit and prepaid cards to their smartphones to make it easy to earn rewards on everyday purchases and save on the cost of everyday life.

The Fuel Rewards program uses cents-per-gallon fuel savings as the ultimate consumer reward for everyday purchases made by members every time they shop at more than 10,000 restaurants, more than 1,400 retail locations nationwide, and nearly 700 online merchants that belong to the program. The company recently announced that its members have saved more than $500 million on fuel since the program’s launch in 2012. Rewards can be redeemed for the program at nearly 12,000 participating Shell and other select fuel stations across the country. Fuel Rewards members can always save a minimum of 3 cents per gallon on up to 20 gallons every time they fill up at participating Shell stations.

Mobile apps play a critical role in retailers’ business viability and consumers’ everyday activities, according to recent statistics showing that 80% of Americans own a smartphone (GlobalWebIndex) and that half of all U.S. commerce will be conducted on mobile devices by 2017 (Gartner).

“We wanted a stronger mobile focus in response to our member data showing that 60% of all email communications are being opened on a smartphone, and more than 50% of our program website views are taking place on a mobile device,” said Scott Schaper, EVP of Marketing and Program Operations for the Fuel Rewards program. “We designed our program and universal rewards currency to impact our members’ everyday lives positively, and our mobile app was built with that same focus ̶ to add more value, utility, and ways for our members to earn and save.”

The Fuel Rewards program developed the app at a time when consumers are demanding “mobile first” interactions with brands and businesses. The app was created in conjunction with Bottle Rocket, an app developer, and Vibes, a mobile marketing firm, to address rapidly changing consumer needs and mobile commerce opportunities.

“Marketers are faced with more change and challenges than ever before and loyalty is at the heart of the marketer’s dilemma. With the launch of this new app, Fuel Rewards can leverage their expertise in loyalty in a new way for a whole new generation of consumers,” said Calvin Carter, Founder and CEO, Bottle Rocket.

From the app, members can quickly and easily join the program, link credit/debit payment cards to their account, track their rewards and redemptions, and use geo-location features and maps to identify nearby participating merchants, affiliated programs, Shell stations and MasterCard® limited-time offers.

 

Feature-rich App supports personalized marketing

The Fuel Rewards mobile application also serves as a new customer acquisition and engagement tool for the program and its participating brands, enabling them to keep members informed through text messages and push notifications, in-app alerts, geo-targeted offers, and other personalized communications that reinforce buying behaviors and inspire loyalty.

“Every mobile communication needs to be perfectly coordinated and highly relevant to our members, and now we’re able to do that,” said Schaper, noting that mobile communication capabilities enhance the program’s one-to-one marketing efforts.

These capabilities will be complemented by the May 2015 roll-out of the company’s next-generation card-linked offer (CLO) program, which allows members to link any debit or credit card to the loyalty program in order to earn rewards from participating retailers and merchants across the country.

Now through May 31, 2015, consumers can use their linked MasterCards to earn rewards at participating sporting goods and home and garden retailers across the U.S. MasterCard offers change seasonally, giving members new ways to save throughout the year using their linked MasterCards.

 

Consumers want loyalty programs that are mobile-enabled

“Consumers can now engage with our loyalty program from their smartphones as easily as snapping a photograph or sending a text,” Schaper says. “Expanding the program with this new mobile app enables our participating brands and retailers to connect with customers throughout their daily mobile lives. Combined with our card-linked offer platform, the app truly delivers on our promise to give members the easiest ways to save the most on fuel.”

Additional features include:

  • Credit/debit card linking to their Fuel Rewards account
  • Intuitive navigation and location-aware technology, enabling members to view nearby offers by merchant or category, and find nearby Shell stations
  • Real-time tracking of rewards balances; personalized “pump price” displays
  • Option to receive location-aware, time-sensitive push notifications, alerts and reminders on mobile devices about promotions from the Fuel Rewards program, Shell or affiliated programs/partners
  • In-app travel portal, powered by Priceline, allowing members to earn Fuel Rewards savings when booking hotels and rental cars; airfare will also be included in an upcoming release

 

Retail program participants include Winn-Dixie, BI-LO, Caesars Entertainment, Priceline and more; online retailers including Staples, Kohl’s, Best Buy and Macy’s, as well as an extensive restaurant network. In addition to rewards redemption, consumers can also earn rewards through participating Shell convenience store offers.

The Fuel Rewards app is available for iPhone and Android devices. For more information about the Fuel Rewards program, its mobile app or to interview a Fuel Rewards program executive, please contact Vanessa Horwell at ThinkInk (vhorwell@thinkinkpr.com) or 305-749-5342 x232, or Amanda Williams at awilliams@thinkinkpr.com or 305-749-5342 x238.