Ocado launches loyalty discount scheme as sales slow

Ocado, the online grocery retailer, has reported a slowdown in sales growth as customers reign in their spending to cope with the challenging economic environment.
The company said sales increased 16.9 per cent to £147.9m during the 12 weeks to 7 August 2011, up from £126.5m the previous year but down from a rate of 20.8 pr cent in the previous six months.
Weekly order figures rose from 92,834 to 110,945 year-on-year but average spend per customer fell from £113.59 to £111.08.
In terms of customer service, it revealed that recent investment in this area resulted in 99 per cent of items delivered as ordered in the third quarter, and 95.5 per cent made on time or early.
Meanwhile, to help improve slowing sales Ocado has launched a loyalty discount scheme that will offer customers discounts of 10% or more on a range of more than 500 branded products, in return for a small annual subscription fee.
The online supermarket claims regular shoppers could save more than £100 a year through the Ocado Saving Pass, which follows the introduction of the company’s free home delivery scheme (Ocado Delivery Pass).
Ocado co-founder, Jason Gissing aid: “We’re proud to bring a whole new way of saving to our shoppers. Not only will the Ocado Saving Pass help lower the cost of a basket throughout the year, it will also offer great discounts in the run up to Christmas, a time when we are all trying to economise.”
“We are really pleased to be helping our customers secure even greater value when shopping at Ocado in a time of economic uncertainty.”