Monday, January 28, 2008

Best Buy Reward Zone

Last fall, Best Buy introduced the Reward Zone program in Canada. Every time you buy something in-store or online, you collect points - 1 point for each $1. Collect 400 points and you get a $5 certificate. Not a bad program if you spend plenty of money at Best Buy. There are additional ways to earn bonus points so it's not too hard to at least get $10 to $20 in certificates. Fine and dandy.

But for a company that sells technology items, the program is, well, not very high-tech. You have to print off the certificates and they can only be used in-store. Excuse me? That means it is easy to forget or lose the certificates (though you can print them until they expire).

Why not just have a little reminder that comes up when you buy something. The cashier could ask if you want to cash in your certificates. Shoppers Drug Mart does this with their Optimum program. The fewer things I have to carry in my wallet, the better.

What really bothers me is that you can't use them online. You can access your Reward Zone account online. You can print your certificates. You just can't use them when you purchase something online. Who thought of that limitation?

Another small annoyance is that it takes several weeks for points to be posted. Some of the reward programs - Air Miles to name one - are worse than financial institutions when it comes to posting rewards promptly.

Best Buy if you get rid of the printing part and the delay in posting points and allow me to use the certificates online then you have a winner of a reward program. Make it easy and simple to use.

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