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September 26, 2012updated 04 Apr 2017 4:13pm

Ikano and Monsoon launch loyalty app

Retail loyalty services provider Ikano and  fashion chain Monsoon have rolled out the first mobile loyalty app in the UK fashion retail market. Ikano says the app will take over the functions usually served by plastic cards, such as reward and discounts services, allowing retail outlets to save the costs of printing and shipping physical cards.

By Chiara Francavilla

The app carries the customer’s loyalty card as a barcode, which is scanned by the in-store till systems. The app also provides promotion alerts and store location services.

Joe Irons, e-commerce and multichannel marketing director at Monsoon Accessorize said: “[Customers] will now never be without their reward card, as their smartphones will now be their loyalty tokens.”

According to Ikano’s head of client services and marketing Lindsey Ulanowsky, the app responds to emerging customers’ demands.

“It should be well received, given that during our retail loyalty survey, 54% of customers thought that a card on the phone was a good idea,” she said.The shift from physical cards and vouchers to mobile apps is a growing trend in the retail and service industries.

In June 2012, US mobile payment company Square upgraded its Pay with Square app adding loyalty functionalities, allowing users to receive a digital version of the traditional physical loyalty cards from the merchants that joined the initiative.

Earlier this year, Apple launched a new app, Passbook, with which users can collect vouchers, tickets and boarding passes by scanning QR codes with their iPhone.

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