Wendy’s launches a national loyalty program

The company believes combining its Wendy’s Rewards with its new breakfast can bring customers in more often.
Wendy's Rewards
Photo courtesy of Wendy's

Wendy’s is taking its loyalty program national. The Dublin, Ohio-based burger chain on Tuesday said it was launching its Wendy’s Rewards program nationwide.

The program is designed to build loyalty and frequency among existing Wendy’s customers. The chain has been signaling its intention for months that it hopes that loyalty could be used alongside its new breakfast to help with its customer traffic.

“Frequency remains an opportunity for us,” CEO Todd Penegor said in May, according to a transcript on the financial services site Sentieo. “We will be looking at our loyalty program to help us solve this. We believe we have built a loyalty program that people will love, and we could not be more excited to get this into the hands of customers.”

Numerous chains have jumped on board loyalty, using the data to market directly to customers based on their preferences, and encouraging them to come in more often. Chains such as Domino’s Pizza and Starbucks have used their loyalty programs to effectively generate sales.

Large burger chains, however, have not been as aggressive on loyalty, which could give Wendy’s an advantage.

The program enables customers to accumulate points based on purchases tracked through the company’s mobile app, and to introduce the program Wendy’s is giving out double points for diners’ first order.

Customers earn 10 points for every $1 spent on food. How many points it takes to earn free food ranges, from 150 points for a small Frosty, 4-piece Chicken Nuggets or Sausage Biscuit, to 700 points for a free Baconator or salad. The company also said it would provide bonus points for the purchase of certain items from time to time.

The company launched breakfast in early March, generating strong sales from the get-go. The daypart has proven resilient during the coronavirus, despite an overall decline in breakfast sales, settling in at about 8% of sales.

“Our loyalty and breakfast is an enabler to break habits,” CFO Gunther Plosch told investors last month, according to a Sentieo transcript.

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