JCPenney Rewards

August 15, 2008 · 0 comments

Four years ago I reported that JCPenney was considering establishing a rewards program, and FINALLY, they announced via a sales circular last week the introduction of JCP Rewards.
The program (a work in progress, according to a spokesman) allows shoppers to register up to 3 of their debit or credit cards — they don’t have to be JCP-issued cards — and members will receive 1 point per dollar when these cards are used for regular or sale priced purchases in-store, online, or by catalog. (Clearance purchases are excluded.) Members who shopped at JCPenney the previous month will get double points. By signing up, program members will also receive special offers and coupons by email.
250 points = a $10 JCPenney promotional certificate (there’s a max of 1 per month), which equals a 4% rebate (or an 8% rebate if the points were doubled because you shopped there the previous month — also note that they’re doubling points through 12/31/08 if you join now). These certificates can be combined with other offers. You should be able to combine this with the cash back you can earn by shopping through one of the rewards programs (Ebates offers 4% cashback, or get 3% at MrRebates or Upromise), as long as you use one of those three registered cards to pay for the order.
JCP Chief Marketing Officer Mike Boylson said, “We know that a significant number of consumers are shopping in our merchandise categories each month. We also know that our customers spend an average of $30 to $40 each time they shop with us. With JCP Rewards, we are able to reward customers for regularly shopping at JCPenney, while building long term customer loyalty.”
This morning, it was reported that JCP’s profit for the second quarter of the year fell 36%. They attributed this to consumers cutting back on discretionary spending and fewer mall trips. In my opinion, blaming lower profits on “fewer mall trips” means that JCPenney customers aren’t loyal enough to the company to shop through their website or catalog. JCP needs this loyalty program to bring those shoppers back into the fold. I noticed that is doing a promotion for free shipping on $49 orders. That’s obviously another route to entice business from the shoppers who are avoiding the mall.
I think that this program is a huge step in the right direction for JCPenney. Back in March, I made a post specifically about JCPenney and my disappointment that they had no rewards program for customers who weren’t credit card holders. I think that the doubling of points for members who shopped the prior month is a big enticement for repeat business. I am disappointed that the potential rewards are capped at $10 a month, though, and I’m also concerned about how (if at all) this program will affect their cardholder benefits — I like the JCPenney Privilege program for cardholders (especially the free GCs they send on your birthday and I think right before Mother’s Day). So, while there’s some room for improvement, I’m very happy that they’re at least trying something…even though it took four years to get it off the ground!
Sources:, Dallas Morning News,

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