Source: Waitrose

MyWaitrose was relaunched in February 2022

Waitrose is to update its MyWaitrose loyalty scheme to improve the range and relevance of personalised rewards offered to customers.

Waitrose relaunched the membership scheme as digital only in February 2022, as part of a multimillion-pound investment aimed at improving the level of personalisation offered to customers. It saw the introduction of offers tailored to an individual member’s shopping habits, as well as special discounts including a 20% discount on Waitrose meat, fish and cheese counters.

However, the reboot was met with a flood of complaints from shoppers expressing dissatisfaction over the digital-first scheme, including over the value and “irrelevance” of the personalised offers.

Some members also expressed disappointment at the decision to remove the offer of a free newspaper and coffee from the scheme. Waitrose made a series of updates in response to the complaints in the weeks following the relaunch, it also reintroduced the free coffee offer in October 2022.

Waitrose wrote to customers last week notifying them of the changes, which will come into force from 18 October. The latest changes have been designed to simplify the scheme, and improve the flexibility with which a customer can redeem vouchers.

The most significant of the four updates will see the timescale of transaction history used to determine a customer’s personalised offers extended, from four weeks to 52 weeks. The change will enable the supermarket to give “more options” to customers who shop less frequently, and “means they’ll now receive more relevant vouchers, based on their previous shopping habits,” Waitrose said.

Under the other significant change, Waitrose will now enable customers to deselect vouchers if a product is out of stock, or they change their mind. Currently a customer has to select two of the multiple tailored vouchers available each week, and cannot deselect them once the vouchers are in the voucher wallet. They’ll no longer be able to swap a voucher for an alternative product if the one they have selected is unavailable, however. 

The two other minor changes involve a simplifying of the terminology used to clarify which items are not included in the offer. Items including seasonal and loose produce will now be listed as “excluded” rather than “ineligible”, as previously termed. The supermarket will also now highlight the dates of the “offer window” on the front of each voucher.

“This latest update simplifies our terms and conditions, and reflects improvements like giving customers the ability to reselect their personalised vouchers if they change their mind, or an item is out of stock,” said a Waitrose spokesman.

The changes come as the John Lewis Partnership prepares for a wider relaunch of the loyalty programmes across both Waitrose and John Lewis businesses. In June Emily Wells was appointed as its first ever cross-partnership head of loyalty to lead the relaunch. She will work with partnership customer director Charlotte Lock, and Waitrose customer director Nathan Ansell. The Grocer understands the change could see the MyWaitrose and MyJohn Lewis schemes combined under a single “pan-partnership” scheme.

The scheme is set to launch in 2024.