LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Thorntons’ online and in-app expertise has landed it a spot in the top 20 chains in Stuzo’s digital c-store ranking.
“We congratulate Thorntons for its successful Refreshing Rewards program. Thorntons belongs to the 53% of retailers on CStoreDigitalRanking.com that offer a mobile loyalty program to its consumers,” said Sandra Sydlik, marketing manager for Stuzo. “Thorntons Refreshing Rewards program drives consumers into the store and encourages them to spend more by offering fuel discounts, exclusive deals and programs, personalized perks, sweepstakes entries and more.”
- Click here to see Stuzo’s complete online ranking.
The ranking covers 100 c-store chains, measuring each chain’s digital presence, including mobile commerce, connected car, website and social media. Each company is ranked on a points-based system with a score of zero to five for each metric. Each metric is calculated using four more specific metrics. While this article examines the details behind the Thorntons ranking, it is meant more as a profile than an attempt to compare it to competitors.
Click through for more on Thorntons’ spot in Stuzo’s c-store digital ranking and information on the brand’s digital capabilities …
Mobile Commerce: 1.63
App Performance: 3.2
Mobile Payment: 0
Loyalty Program: 3
Mobile Ordering: 0
Currently, Refreshing Rewards members can enter sweepstakes to win Monster gear or a year of free fuel. The Refreshing Rewards program also includes tobacco offers to all members who are 21 or older. “Freequency” Rewards allows consumers to enter clubs and earn free items while making in-store purchases using a digital punch card. Every 10th purchased item is free.
Some app users have complained about difficulties signing up or that the app crashes, according to reviews in the Apple and Android app stores. The app is rated 2.3 on the Apple App Store and 4 on Android’s. Sydlik and the team at Stuzo see an opportunity for Thorntons to resolve these technical issues and add mobile payment and order-ahead capabilities for the mobile app.
Loyalty Program Promotion: 4.33
App Promotion: 5
The Thorntons website is easy to navigate and provides useful information for consumers such as available menu items, store locator filters, gas availability, a full list of rewards that can be earned and an FAQ regarding the reward program. The mobile app is well-promoted on the site, which explains the benefits and features available. Consumers log in on the Thorntons site to keep track of their Refreshing Rewards.
Brand Responsiveness: 4
Frequency of Posts: 4
Creativity of Content: 3.5
Level of Engagement: 2
Thorntons posts frequently, sharing content such as current in-store offers, promotions for the Refreshing Rewards program and mobile app, and images highlighting food items; however, Thorntons' mobile app and loyalty program could be promoted more heavily to inform consumers about available mobile offers. Thorntons does not receive much engagement from consumers, but it is very responsive to its consumer's questions and comments on social platforms.
Connected Car: 0
Thorntons did not score in the connected-car metric, although this score is not unusual for c-store chains on Stuzo’s list. The metric is largely focused on the future. Stuzo predicts chains will put more resources into such initiatives as the industry evolves.
The connected-car metric measures the chain’s use of a car’s “infotainment” system on the dashboard, which will become more common as the capabilities of car platforms expand further.