Shopping Discussion

PC Plus point system totally BS

  • Last Updated:
  • Nov 10th, 2017 9:34 am
[OP]
Deal Addict
User avatar
Nov 16, 2003
2614 posts
53 upvotes
Toronto

PC Plus point system totally BS

Hi All, sorry to have to vent here, but I hope more people can see how poorly their customer service is at Loblaws and PC Plus Points system.

The last 2 wks, Loblaws has advertised a 20000pts ($20) promotion for PC points for $80 purchase. I made the qualified purchase, and at this particular loblaws, there were temporary signs posted by the cashier and on the self serve terminals advising that the points will be credited to the Plus Account in 3-4wks.

So that's fine, when I was there last night, the same promo is still going on this week so again I scan the plus points tag, and the cashier advised me that i need to "load the offers" before I can get the points on all my purchases and that bonus 20000pts. I was never told the first week when I made the purchase, and I don't remember reading anything on how this ridiculous system works. Like all other loyalty programs, you simply scan your card, why do the customer have to go online to load the offers every freaking week before you go shopping? It makes no sense, and if this is a way to increase website traffic it is the dumbest I have heard.

The cashier goes on to saying you can load it with your smart phone now, but I do not have a data plan with my phone, so she suggest I make the purchase then call PC points tomorrow.

Fast forward to today, I give PLUS points a call, the CSR is no help, again all i hear is, you did not load offers before you go, nothing they can do. I asked to be transferred to the supervisor, of course he is rude, and basically said you didn't read. And denied that the sign was ever posted on the first week of the promotion, and that is not how the system works.

I am not going to waste any more of my time or energy for $40

But for those who shop at Loblaws or use their PLUS points system, please be ware this is what you have to do. I think it discriminates against people without a computer or smart phone, and people who might not be computer literate.

Nowhere on this video on the PC Points main page mention anything about loading rewards
http://youtu.be/T8QAaI1T9yw

For all I know, Loblaws just lost me as their customer.

Sorry for the venting.
311 replies
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Oct 22, 2007
8331 posts
1545 upvotes
London
I agree, this whole PC Points thing sounds so convoluted and irritating that I simply won't bother with it.
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Apr 4, 2009
7670 posts
764 upvotes
North York
I was wondering why they had the PC Points PLUS program (ontop of PC Points) to begin with ... so it may be a prelude/setup to more tied social marketing/promotions.
Deal Addict
User avatar
Jan 16, 2008
1113 posts
102 upvotes
Neb wrote:
Aug 1st, 2013 12:41 pm
I don't remember reading anything on how this ridiculous system works
The "you need to load the offers" mumbo jumbo is in the fine print, which you obviously need to accept in order to participate in the program. I actually took the time to read their fine print, which I normally never do. Not sure why I did this time...
[OP]
Deal Addict
User avatar
Nov 16, 2003
2614 posts
53 upvotes
Toronto
I bet if it was not in fine print, people would not bother. No mention of loading in their promo video.
Deal Guru
Jan 7, 2002
10552 posts
3359 upvotes
Waterloo, ON
I'm confused about this thread.

1. The e-mails I get from PC Points have this Subject, "BYLO, load your new offers now." Note the word "load." It implies you have to take an action, i.e. load the new offers into the app.

2. When I open these e-mails there's a graphic similar to this one:

[IMG]http://s18.postimg.org/ur673zkq1/Image_1.png[/IMG]

Note what action the button at the bottom requests you to take with your Offers.

3. When I start the app on my smartphone and tap on Offers it shows me three tabs, New, Loaded and Earned. That suggests there's a difference between New offers and offers that I've Loaded.

Then there's the fine print, which I agree isn't very prominent. That's typical of fine print. But the first three items I've listed are in your face every time you get an e-mail with new offers or when you use their app.
veni, vidi, Visa
[OP]
Deal Addict
User avatar
Nov 16, 2003
2614 posts
53 upvotes
Toronto
I guess i didnt read the emails, usually just hit delete like most spam mails. My point is, why does it have to be so complicated? Why do i have to spend my time to click, sign in, and load offers. Then go shopping?
Deal Addict
User avatar
Mar 15, 2012
1544 posts
438 upvotes
I agree that loading the offers is stupid, but at the same time, if you didn't load them yourself you'd still have to either look online or your app to see what the offers are anyway (since they're different for everyone). I'd assume they're doing it this way to force people to actually look at their offers and make an effort to buy them rather than just walking in and getting your usual purchases because they haven't taken a second to glance at their offers.

And both weeks in the flyer and signs in store, the "offer must be loaded" for the 20K pts wasn't exactly fine print. It's slightly larger than the "for every $80 you spend" actually.
Deal Guru
Jan 7, 2002
10552 posts
3359 upvotes
Waterloo, ON
Neb wrote:
Aug 1st, 2013 2:41 pm
I guess i didnt read the emails, usually just hit delete like most spam mails.
Sometimes "SPAM" e-mail isn't. If you delete e-mail without reading it from sources with whom you do business then you have to deal with the consequences.

Next you'll argue that you didn't read an e-mail notification from a financial institution with whom you do business so you didn't realize you owed them money and now you're pissed off that they sent your account to corrections?
My point is, why does it have to be so complicated? Why do i have to spend my time to click, sign in, and load offers. Then go shopping?
These are separate points from the point behind this thread, i.e. that you weren't told you have to load offers in order to get these PC Plus points.

P.S. I could ask why Shell wants me to go into their convenience store to validate some AirMiles bonus offer when all I want to do is pay for gas at the pump using a credit card and my AirMiles card. After all they've got my AM number and they know they sent me the bonus AMs offer so why should I have to schlepp to the store, stand in line behind a bunch of bozos who can't decide what lottery numbers to play and then wait for the clerk to process my transaction. I could ask, but I don't. And I don't call their "system totally BS" either.

P.P.S. I could also ask why the PC Plus program is available only to shoppers at Loblaws stores and not also to other stores in the Loblaws empire like Zehrs and Valu-Mart? Why are those of us who don't live near genuine Loblaws stores treated as second class customers? But again, while I could, I don't. It's Loblaws' program and they get to set the rules.
veni, vidi, Visa
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
May 9, 2009
5203 posts
1001 upvotes
Montreal
While I can't explain why they require this extra step, I know this is common with many American grocery loyalty programs. For example, at Price Choppers, I also have to load special offers on my account before I can take advantage of them.
[OP]
Deal Addict
User avatar
Nov 16, 2003
2614 posts
53 upvotes
Toronto
Most stores will allow you to credit your account for points if you bring your card and receipt back at the customer service desk. But not in this instance, you forget to load it is SOL. Especially for a new program, you would think they would be more lax, i am not exactly trying to ask for something i dont deserve.

Anyway, the more complicated the program, and the more hoops you have the jump through the less likely people will adapt to it.

I am just stating that in my opinion this is a poorly designed program, and will be interesting to see how long it will stay like this before they make a change.
Deal Guru
Jan 7, 2002
10552 posts
3359 upvotes
Waterloo, ON
psyko514 wrote:
Aug 1st, 2013 3:27 pm
While I can't explain why they require this extra step
RemedialChaosTheory has a plausible explanation, "I'd assume they're doing it this way to force people to actually look at their offers and make an effort to buy them rather than just walking in and getting your usual purchases because they haven't taken a second to glance at their offers." These programs are intended to track your behaviour in store. In the case of this offer they want to know if you spent $80 because you happened to be in the store and needed that much in groceries or because you came in to take advantage of the 20,000 point offer.

There was an article recently that talked about how some places in the US have in-store WiFi that lets them track the path you take through the store by triangulating your position using multiple access points. They use that info to determine where to place various types of merchandise so you'll most likely see it and hopefully buy it. Imagine systems like that coupled with customized bonus offers that steer you towards the most profitable (for the store) items.
Neb wrote:
Aug 1st, 2013 3:50 pm
I am just stating that in my opinion this is a poorly designed program
How does that make the "PC Plus point system totally BS"?
veni, vidi, Visa
Deal Expert
User avatar
Sep 19, 2004
20311 posts
3095 upvotes
Waterloo
Club Sobeys (Sobey's program in Ontario) requires you to load offers too, to your card. It works well for me

What I hate about PC Plus, is that it's only at Loblaws store for now... no RCSS, no Zehrs..... (I wouldn't expect it for No Frills just like no Club Sobeys @ FreshCo/PriceChopper)
Which Credit Cards to sign up? >> Jerry's List of Credit Cards with $200+ Welcome bonus/Aeroplan & AMEX Churning FAQ
AMEX Personal 60K || Business Platinum 75K || Biz Gold 40K || SPG 25K
Member
May 8, 2001
292 posts
22 upvotes
Well, I call this thread BS :)

What these are, are basically digital coupons. They are offers but not for everyone. For example like jerryhung mentioned the Club Sobeys program they used to send offers to your email and they were print and cut coupons. Which were a waste of time and paper but that's how coupons are. Then they wised up and had these offers available to "load" onto your card. I get different offers than my dad because I shop less. He'll get xx points for larger purchases but not less. Mine are in the buy $20 range and get xx (less) points.

So Loblaws is doing the same thing. They are coupons but rather than print and take with you they get loaded on your card. So just like a coupon if you forget to bring it you can't use it. And future offers will be different for different spenders.
[OP]
Deal Addict
User avatar
Nov 16, 2003
2614 posts
53 upvotes
Toronto
Well these are all different take on the system. Again, this thread is just my opinion, I think the system they have come up with is not the best for the customer. For example, the Shoppers optimum is one of the most successful loyalty programs in canada, and they have different items with "bonus" points, as long as you buy those items and read the flyer to know which one offers that, you can take advantage of the bonus. No need for coupons, no need for loading all I need is the flyer and card. Simple.. sometimes the KISS simple works best. If they want to track buyers preference or conduct market research, you can still track those through your points card as long as I scan it after my purchase. For example, costco have on record every item you have ever bought from them based on your membership number, they can look at your buying habits with a click of a button. They can also look at slow moving items and put those on sale to clear etc. I just don't' see the point in loblaw's so call reward system. I see it as extra work for the customer in the end. Both of the above retailers can do what loblaws is trying to do, but does not cost me any extra time. Anyway, the thread was more for me to vent at the poor CSR, and a "buyers beware" for those who want to take advantage of the 20000pts. bonus.

Top