Shell has launched a new rewards programme – Shell Go+ – which will replace its current Drivers’ Club scheme and is designed to completely update the way the company rewards customers for the business they bring to Shell service stations.

“It’s a fresh start to a brand new rewards programme, and a massive opportunity for retailers and dealers across the whole Shell network to serve our customers with exciting rewards both on the shop and on fuel,” explained Michael Hominick, Shell’s UK marketing manager.

“This is a pioneering and leading rewards programme, and we’re going to be absolutely leading the way in how rewards programmes work - not just in the competitive forecourt sector, but also across the whole retail sector.

“We’re expecting more customers, coming more often, spending across the different offers we’ve got in the service stations.”

Hominick said Shell wanted to create a loyalty and rewards programme which gives rewards back to customers for all of their visits to our service stations, whether they’re just coming in for a cup of coffee, a car wash, or a full tank of Shell V-Power.

Shell also wanted to recognise that customers have changed how they interact with companies and bring it into their digital space - taking advantage of mobile phone technology and using the Shell app as the way in which customers are in control of which rewards they spend and when; with the ability to track and see the savings they’ve been making.

“We wanted to have something that is always on,” explained Hominick. “To reward people for just being a member of the programme, giving them a reason to come all the time. So we’ve put what we call member benefits in this programme – things that are always available. You will always get a saving – typically 10% – on your coffee, your Jamie Oliver Deli by Shell, Helix Lubricants and so on.”

Examples of the rewards include: 10% off hot drinks and Jamie Oliver deli by Shell and deli2go every visit; money off fuel every 10 visits, having spent at least £2 in the shop or £10 on fuel to count as a visit; £3 off Shell V-Power for every 300 litres bought.

Hominick said there would also be some surprises along the way of special offers, or even free items from time to time to reward customers for the business they’re bringing to Shell service stations.

“It’s a real mixture,” he explained. “Scale is proportionate to how much business people are bringing. The more you spend as a customer, the more you save. And because the two things are so nicely linked together, the value exchange grows. If customers buy into both the fuel and the shop they really see the maximum potential of the savings in the programme.”

Shell Go+ is described as being very simple to use, with every purchase recorded on the app. But for those not ready for the Shell app digital experience, the company has created a solution so the programme can be used with a plastic card and a key fob. Customers can then use email and the website to claim their rewards.

Shell Drivers Club will close down later this year, but Shell hopes its 1.5 million active users will find the new scheme a positive change and will readily move across to Shell Go+. From there the company hopes to double the number of users.

Trials run in 12 service stations in the Portsmouth area revealed positive feedback, according to Hominick, showing that the programme was liked much more than Shell Driver’s Club: “People enjoyed using it. The evidence from what changed in their behaviour was really encouraging too - people came and visited more often, and people who hadn’t shopped in the shop before started to buy coffee; so we saw big uplifts and changes in behaviour from the people that took part in that pilot. It gave us a lot of good feedback.

Hominick said all dealers will participate in Shell Go+: “We’ve been engaging with our dealer community to do technical upgrades to the till systems for them to be able to do this and to get everything ready at those service stations. We’re confident we will have the majority of them across the line by the spring/summer.

“They’ve told us they’re excited about the change in behaviour – of customers coming more often. The emphasis on the shop side of this is something Shell hasn’t really provided for our dealers as much as we are now and going forward, so they see a huge amount of opportunity in growing their businesses.

“One of the really interesting things is that we can harness the fact that I can run a separate campaign for one customer, at the same time as one for a different customer. I can have multiple campaigns, offers and rewards, based on all of the different customers’ outlays.

“It’s really a very different way of using this tool, to how traditional programmes work, where over one period of time you’re just talking about Shell V-Power, for example. It’s tailored to individual usage. For one customer it might be all about Shell V-Power, for another customer it might be all about Jamie Oliver Deli by Shell. For another it might be about summer motoring. We can do competitions and fun events.

“So Shell Go+ is not just a transactional relationship, but a fun and engaging relationship with the content we send out about what we’re up to and getting customers to get access to movie premieres or money-can’t-buy prizes.”