Is the paper receipt dying?
It’s been a long road for shorter receipts at CVS. Going back to 2009, the chain has been singled out by publications, including Los Angeles Times and Wall Street Journal, over its long and wasteful paper receipts. Two years later, CVS announced plans to shorten the length of its in-store receipts tied to its ExtraCare Rewards program by about 25 percent. Now, the company has announced that its ExtraCare members will have the option of receiving digital receipts rather than printed versions at the checkout.
“We are excited to roll out the much-anticipated launch of digital receipts. We heard loud and clear that while our customers love receiving coupons and special offers, many wanted a paperless option,” said Helena Foulkes, president, CVS Pharmacy, in a statement. “This feature lets our customers continue to make personalized choices as to how they engage with us, and will let our members choose to say ‘So long!’ to the long paper receipts at check-out.”
The assertion that CVS customers love receiving coupons has been the basis for the chain’s resistance to shorter receipts for years. Back in 2011 when the LA Times piece was published, the chain argued for longer receipts because members of the ExtraCare program liked to “feel the reward.”
With the new program, ExtraCare members will receive their receipts via e-mail. They will also have the option of requesting a printed version. CVS claims to have 70 million active members in the program.
- CVS Pharmacy Says “So Long, Long Receipts,” Announces Arrival of Digital Receipts for Customers – CVS Pharmacy/PRNewswire
- CVS to Shorten Receipts Amid Social Firestorm – RetailWire
Helena Foulkes in a surprise appearance on ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live – Photo: CVS Pharmacy
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Generally speaking, do consumers today prefer long receipts with coupons to shorter paper versions or digital ones? Do you see printed receipts going away in the near future?