Anna Sopova
Success stories

Runpay enables retail stores to provide high quality customer loyalty schemes using Apifonica

Runpay specialises in financial technologies for thousands of businesses across the world, ranging from utility companies and ticketing firms to retail outlets. It creates and manages all types of payment systems including in-store payment terminals, bill payments, mobile phone top ups, bank transactions, and an extensive loyalty program offering for grocery retail stores and their customers. Rather than having to develop and support their own loyalty program or join nationwide discount programs, retail stores, petrol station and other businesses may simply use Runpay’s loyalty program as a service offer, based on pay-as-you-go principle. This is an easy and cost-effective option for retail stores. Runpay provides a ready to use program, by means of a handy in-store terminal that processes loyalty cards, loyalty points credit and redemption logic, handling the production and delivery of both electronic and physical loyalty cards on behalf of the retailer, and charging them either a monthly or a small per-transaction fee, typically with no installation or sign- up payments.

Providing cost savings with global scalability

Top of mind for Runpay is managing its own operating costs, whilst continuing to streamline the service. The service also needs to be scalable enough to cater for the tens of thousands of people signing up to retail loyalty schemes each month and to ensure this is a convenient and positive experience for the individual customer.

Runpay engaged Apifonica, a specialist in helping companies build exceptional customer communication with voice, SMS and social messaging, to deliver this. “We felt that Apifonica clearly understood the need to provide high levels of efficient customer service,” explains Sergei Zamuruev, project manager for loyalty product for Spain at Runpay. “It is vital that the individual customers signing up to a retailer’s loyalty scheme have a positive experience as this reflects on their view of the retailer, who has entrusted us to provide this service on their behalf.”

Apifonica supplies virtual telephone numbers that all customers call or SMS to register with a retail store’s loyalty scheme and uses intelligent inbound IVR to guide each customer through the verification process. Importantly, all incoming calls and messages are free of charge at Apifonica. The resulting cost savings have had a huge positive impact on Runpay’s profit margins.

Store staff can prioritise customer service

While it is crucial to have customer’s contact data for a loyalty program to actually bring benefits to its owner, getting this data shouldn’t be an added burden for the front-line staff; otherwise, the loyalty program risks to be silently sabotaged from within. This is why RunPay decided to offer the customers a possibility to “activate a loyalty card is done by either calling a local phone number or sending an SMS. This enables cashiers and other frontline store staff to prioritise serving customers in store rather than spend their time getting people signed up to a loyalty program.”

In fact, the automated service from Apifonica saves a cashier an average of 2.15 minutes for every new cardholder that wants to sign up to a loyalty program. Cashiers just hand out cards to the entitled customers, and they activate them themselves. Hence, stores can enjoy all benefits of having their own loyalty program without risking queues or adding workload to employees. Other key considerations in Runpay’s choice was that migrating to Apifonica was simple thanks to the straightforward API design and its offering of an extensive inventory of phone numbers with different country and area codes, giving Runpay the flexibility to offer its loyalty program to customers globally.

Simplifying personal data collection and processing

Significantly, Apifonica has also allowed Runpay to simplify how customer data is collected and processed so this is now far less onerous for retailers. Customers provide their data directly to Runpay, that is then responsible for processing this in the correct manner and ensuring compliance with data regulations, including GDPR.

In the future, Runpay may also take advantage of Apifonica’s social media functionality and voice processing technologies, in particular speech to text. This will help expand its customer loyalty program further to offer more flexible options to end customers and help ensure a positive customer experience goes from strength to strength.

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