How UK-based Morrisons used APIs to build its customer loyalty program

Morrison's used Apigee to builds its new Match & More scheme

shopping_trolley.jpg

dreamstime

dreamstime_0
shopping_trolley.jpg dreamstime dreamstime_0

Morrisons' Match & More scheme, launched late last year, lets customers collect points, which can be exchanged for vouchers in store as well as price match Aldi, Lidl, Sainsbury's and Asda - all from their mobile phone.

The Match &More platform pools customer data from various sources to create a fully personalised, useful tool for customers who want to see offers based on their location, as well as compare prices with other grocers.

It does this using an Application Programming Interface (API) platform from Apigee, which provides a secure operability layer between disparate systems.

Data is sourced from Morrisons' tills, its on-premise Oracle estate (which stores the grocer's item and promotion data), the Ocado platform that stores customer information and core merchandising data, and Salesforce.com for its customer relationship data.

The Apigee tool, which runs on AWS, sits in front of these data sources and provides a single API. The site and the smartphone app can call this API to gather all this information - providing a seamless customer experience - securely, Tom Foster, Morrisons' head of platform strategy and architecture told ComputerworldUK.

The app also calls third-party price match data from competitors so the Match & More loyalty scheme can compare groceries customers are looking at or have already bought from Morrisons' competitors.

The scheme, launched in October, already has 120 million API requests a month, Foster said.

While rivals Sainsbury's and Tesco offer loyalty cards Nectar and Clubcard, Match & More is offering a truly personalised shopping experience, Morrisons claims. Using location data, it offers customers promotions relevant to their local shop and usual shopping basket based on their previous shopping profile stored in Ocado.

Enterprises are increasingly opening up APIs to external partners in a bid to foster creative applications that come from developers outside of the business.

Tesco recently launched its API wiki - a public portal, which explains how entrepreneurs can use its 19 APIs to use the retailer's data for useful applications.

Morrisons' API is currently private, but Foster said it was a route they are hoping to go down in the future, although no schedule has been set yet.

Geo-fencing

Foster said the retailer is also "looking at" geo-fencing as a way to use customer location to send personalised notifications while they shop, but would need to assess the feasibility of enabling wifi in every store and "trial carefully" to avoid being overly intrusive.

"There would be certain questions that would have to be asked," he added.

Assisting inventory - a side effect of the loyalty scheme

While pooling Morrisons', Ocado's and third-party data is useful for personalising a customer's shopping experience online and through their phone, it also assists with supply chain and inventory, Foster said.

The retailer can see how a promotion is affecting inventory in real-time, so it can order more products if necessary.

More on customer loyalty programs:
How Supercheap Auto used big data to model customer loyalty
4 brands making customer loyalty programs work
Why Fitness First is dropping its customer loyalty program and turning to data

Join the CMO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Supporting Association

Blog Posts

Top tips to uncovering consumer insights for business innovation

An in-depth understanding of consumers sits at the heart of what we all need to do, but we know it’s not always easy to uncover insights that will unlock a true innovation opportunity.

Matt Whale

Managing director, How To Impact

Is your customer experience program suffering bright shiny object syndrome?

You may have heard of ‘bright shiny object syndrome’. The term is used to describe new initiatives undertaken by organisations that either lack a strategic approach, or suffer from a failure to effectively implement.

Leveraging technology to stand out in the sea of sameness

The technology I'm talking about here is data and marketing automation. Current digital marketing methodology, much as it is practiced at Bluewolf, dictates the need for a strategy that does four things: Finds the right audience, uses the right channel, delivers the right content, and does all of that at the right time.

Eric Berridge

CEO and co-founder of Bluewolf, an IBM Company

Lead Management is very important part of the process. For anyone running Facebook Lead Ads I would recommend using this service.Get your...

Dirk Lo

How this fintech startup is improving content marketing and lead generation

Read more

I am agreeing with Mr. Tyron Hayes that a measured test-and-learn approach could be missing opportunities to not only better engage custo...

brunson5862@mail.ru

CMO interview: How Curtin University’s marketing chief is using test and learn to cope with complexity

Read more

Excellent!

Dr Sadasivan,US

Shakespeare shows data and creativity aren’t Montagues and Capulets

Read more

Great article! Agreed with all... Matthew Lerner, Deeps De Silva... When a company has a great product that solves customers needs, a gre...

James Tyler

Why marketers are embracing growth hacking techniques

Read more

Very good article, Social media analytics helps in problem identification. They can serve as an early warning system for negative custome...

BizVinu

Four ways to use social media to boost customer loyalty

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in