ALDI slams major supermarkets for 'pointless' rewards cards


Discount supermarket ALDI has slammed loyalty cards offered by major supermarkets for “poorly” rewarding customers.

The supermarket has launched an advertising campaign titled, “No Pointless Points”, mocking loyalty cards and telling customers not get “sucked in”.

In a blog post on its ALDI Unpacked website, the supermarket wrote “loyalty schemes are often used to harvest large amounts of data” without giving customers much in return. The blog includes an “ALDI Pointless Points Calculator”.

The calculator claims a person spending $175 at a supermarket every week would need to do so for two years and five months to earn enough points for a four-slice toaster.

That’s also a total of $22,700 spent on groceries.

Discount supermarket ALDI has slammed loyalty cards offered by Coles and Woolworths for not offering enough rewards for customers. Source: Creative Commons

‘Spend $2000 to save $10’

For a $10 grocery voucher, ALDI’s calculator claims it would take more than two months with a total grocery spend of $2,000.

Calculations are based off a “standard rate of one point for every $1 spent” – the same system both Woolworths Rewards and Coles Flybuys use, according to ALDI.

However, Coles and Woolworths have both said there are quicker ways to earn more rewards points.

ALDI’s head of customer service Adrian Christie told News Corp “customers need to realise what they are giving up for rewards”.

“It’s not a mistake that the words ‘loyalty’ and ‘scheme’ are used together as they are a scheme; there is some sort of manipulation going on,” Mr Christie said.

ALDI’s head of customer service Adrian Christie has questioned whether rewards cards benefit shoppers or shareholders. Source: Getty Images (File pic)

He also questioned whether the value was more for the customer or the shareholder.

In 2016, the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner said in a statement, more than 80 per cent of shoppers have a loyalty card.

Research conducted by consumer review site Canstar Blue in August found 63 per cent of shoppers find rewards programs to be good value while 58 per cent said the programs influenced where they shop.

In a statement to Yahoo7, a Woolworths spokesperson said it has 11 million members in its rewards program.

About 19 million shoppers in loyalty programs

“Australian shoppers are savvy and know value when they see it,” the spokesperson said. 

ALDI has created a calculator it claims shows the value of reward cards in purchasing certain items including toasters and laptop computers. Source: Getty Images (File pic)

“We’re also focused on making shopping simpler for our members with increasingly personalised and relevant bonus point offers across our wide range of more than 30,000 products.”

Coles also defended its rewards program, and in a statement said it has eight million members as part of its Flybuys program.  

“Flybuys also regularly offers members bonus points,” the spokesperson told Yahoo7. 

“Just last week, Flybuys members could earn 4000 points for spending $200 at Coles – the equivalent of 10 per cent off their shop.”

The spokesperson also added shoppers can “multiply” points by taking out an insurance policy or using a Coles credit card.

In other supermarket news, Woolworths has launched a new delivery service.

Woolworths’ Sydney and Melbourne customers in eligible areas can now select up to 30 items from their local store range and have it delivered to their front door in under two hours.

The express service, which is available between 9am and 7pm seven days a week, will set you back an extra $19. It adds to the existing online shopping delivery service which can be scheduled days in advance.

Supermarkets that introduced a milk levy to support drought-affected farmers have been slammed for the “half-baked” plan by federal Agriculture Minister David Littleproud.

The minister said Coles and Woolworths failed to follow through with the original idea of a 10-cent-a-litre levy on all milk brands that would be paid to processors that supply supermarkets.

Coles hit back at the comments while Woolworths and ALDI are yet to respond.