Borders Rewards “Failed to Deliver,” Say Analysts

January 10, 2007 · 8 comments

According to this story in today’s Ann Arbor News, stock analysts are unhappy with the performance of Borders Bookstores and they think part of the problem was the Borders Rewards program unveiled last year.
Credit Suisse analysts said, “(Borders’) results suggest that the rewards program failed to deliver the anticipated results…” Analysts for Merrill Lynch said they didn’t believe customers really understood how the program worked, which explained why the program didn’t increase customer traffic as expected. Analysts for Goldman, Sachs, & Co. said, “We believe…that the company will significantly change the details of its loyalty program in 2007.”
Borders said changes to Borders Rewards are “likely.” Their CEO will be announcing his new strategy for improving the company’s performance in March.

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Anonymous January 10, 2007 at 9:00 pm

Does this mean there are too many smart shoppers who didn’t like the minimum $10 purchase for any sort of discount? ^_^

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Ginger January 11, 2007 at 12:26 am

When eRewards offered a $15 redemption towards your Border’s Reward card I thought it would be a good idea. I went to Borders.com to read up on it and found the explanation was HORRIBLE. It was NOT easy to understand and put me off. Well DUH, no wonder that program didn’t work too well. I have not yet gotten a Borders Rewards card but was going to get one soon. I have a ton of eRewards I need to spend. BUT, if they are revamping the program I wonder if it would be wise to redeem for Borders or stick with the usual stuff I get. Everything evolves it seems. I just wanted to cash out and go shopping!!!! LOL
Ginger

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scott January 13, 2007 at 6:05 pm

The Borders Rewards program is ridiculous. It definetly needs an overhaul. A rewards program shouldn’t take a 10 minute conversation to understand. It should be understood, at least the basics, with a few simple sentences.

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rob February 25, 2007 at 11:43 pm

Well, as a Borders Express employee, I nor any of my coworkers have any problem spitting out a 30 second phrase that sums up the card without any questioning. So as for the 10 minute statement that was made, there is no reason for anyone to have that long of a conversation, or even a conversation at all, to explain such a simple card.

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jennifer March 15, 2007 at 1:20 am

I am also a Borders employee and all of the crap about the Borders Rewards card bothers the hell out of me! For many reasons:
ITS FREE. Its a free service. Just about any free service out there is not the same as a paid service. The Rewards card is a pretty good “free service” if you ask me. Yeah it might seem complicated to some but it doesn’t take much to print a damn coupon out. If you are going to buy a damn book then why not buy it from a place that offers a FREE service that you get money BACK from. Damn. Its pretty simple. This is not rocket science. A large majority of people that prefer the B&N card over the Border’s card like to get their discount then and there. Well that is the way society works. Look at studies done. We are a culture that is obsessed with getting what we want when we want it. However, you don’t see B&N giving you the 30% off from new best sellers without even HAVING a card, do you? Nope. You get 20% for a non-member and then a extra 10% if you are a member. Border’s offers the full 30% off even if you don’t have a card. You only need a card to get the Rewards points and the member’s only coupons.
Basically…..it’s free. There is no obligation. If you don’t spend that much money on books…your not losing anything on the program. You might be losing all of one minute to find your card and have the person scan it. Thats it. No harm done. Your not losing money or large amounts of time.
So why all the bitching that I see everwhere???!!!

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barbaramartin March 25, 2007 at 3:08 pm

I love the rewards program. If you check my records you will see that I take full advantage of the rewards. However, I have a complaint—- I always received coupons and discounts online, however, I have not received any since the middle of February. Can you check this out and email me what is happening? My records will show that I spend over $50. per month, with the exception of February. Aren’t I a good enough customer?

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barbara martin May 30, 2007 at 11:09 am

i belong to the borders reward program. However, the reward isn’t much and I can buy my books for less money at Barnes and Noble, Wal-mart, etc. I received more with your old program and spent more money. Now when I check my status I am not gaining much by spending $150. Can’t you offer more of a discount for your faithful buyers? I could appreciate it if you will give me an answer.

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Richard Price June 17, 2008 at 9:34 am

was going to register but not going to waste my time with it given the comments I’ve read.

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