The Incredible, Growing Sales Receipt
receipts across stores now can typically measure over two- to three-feet
long as retailers add coupons, return policies, loyalty points,
advertising and other information to the basic data on the transaction.
While some consumers capitalize on the extra information, others
find it wasteful and cumbersome.
information contained in receipts may includes credit card applications,
data regarding recalls for items previously bought, and customer
to an article in The
Wall Street Journal, receipts
started expanding early in this decade as retailers, armed with
sophisticated software, began tailoring information,
such as coupons, to specific customers.
Bogan, senior vice president who oversees receipt printing at NCR
Corp., said redemption rates for coupons printed on receipts can
run as high as three percent – about triple the rate of coupons
mailed to customers or included in advertising circulars. Retailers “find
it’s one of the most effective places to communicate with their
customers,” said Mr. Bogan.
also said many customers have grown to expect and appreciate the
coupons that are typically the most common addition to receipts.
Glynn, a Kroger spokeswoman, said Kroger customers also appreciate
the additional information on receipts showing how much customers
saved for using loyalty cards. She told the Journal, “With
some customers, it’s a badge of honor: here’s how much I saved.”
Depot uses the bottom four inches of receipts to ask customers
to take an online survey in return for a chance to win a $5,000
gift card. The retailer receives 500,000 responses each month.
to 2003, we used customer-comment cards in store, and they got
nowhere near the level of response,” said Ron DeFeo, a Home Depot
the downside, the article notes that store managers are complaining
about running out of receipt paper and having printers break down.
The paper/print costs and the environmental impact are also considerations.
light of these issues, Wal-Mart is testing double-sided receipts.
CVS plans to introduce in-store kiosks where customers can scan
loyalty cards to collect coupons to avoid carrying around lengthy
coupon-filled receipts. Lowe’s is deleting white space at the top
and bottom of receipts and moving the return policy to the back.
waste concerns, the other annoyance for consumers is “paper clutter.” Jeannette
Lovejoy of Roseville, Calif., told the Journal that
the act of stuffing receipts caused the zipper on her purse to
burst. “The receipt issue has gotten out of hand,” Ms. Lovejoy
Question: Do you find the lengthier trend in receipts entirely
appropriate or largely wasteful? Which receipt add-ons to you find