Cumberland Farms Uses Payment App To Create Loyal Customers

While Chevron is experimenting with NFC-compatible mobile payments in a few California gas stations, East Coast fuel and convenience store Cumberland Farms is using their own mobile payment app to keep customers loyal, cut back on credit card fees, and even get gas-buying customers into the store. Their secret is not so secret: it’s a loyalty card and payment app similar to the one that Starbucks uses.

Here’s the catch: the app is directly linked to customers’ bank accounts, which is how the company saves money on credit card processing fees. If you’re comfortable with that, you can get 10 cents off per gallon when using the app.

This isn’t a sustainable solution for all businesses: imagine customers keeping a separate payment app for every store they visit, like a wallet full of virtual store credit and loyalty cards. However, Cumberland Farms has found that the system keeps customers loyal to the chain, and that the prospect of saving ten cents by waving a phone barcode at the gas pump is a pretty good deal.

Customers also receive coupons for a free drink after buying about two tanks’ worth of gas, and surprisingly, they actually redeem them.

Why Some Gas Stations Give Discounts When You Pay With an App [Bloomberg]