Fastrac, a local upstate New York convenience store chain, announced today that its customers have saved more than $5 million dollars in fuel discounts.
Motivated by the promise of savings at the pump, Fastrac customers have racked up over $5 million in discounts in the past five years, thanks to an innovative program launched by the company in 2008.
Increasingly, the general public finds it convenient to use credit cards to pay for their purchases. With each swipe of the card, merchants pay the bank a fee that the consumer never sees. And those fees quickly add up to tens of thousands of dollars annually.
Small businesses everywhere, faced with the mounting cost of credit card transactions, must find ways to offset them. But doing so creates a dilemma: Raise prices and risk losing customers, or somehow persuade customers to change the way they pay.
For Fastrac, the solution came through an alternate method of payment that by-passes credit card transaction fees.
To encourage customers to use the program, Fastrac offers a discount on each gallon of gas purchased. With the Fastrac Member Card, customers can fuel-up at any Fastrac location, receive discounts at the pump of 7-10 cents per gallon, and still enjoy the convenience of paying with a card.
Payment works much like a debit card, drawing directly from the card-owner’s bank account. It’s fast, simple and secure. And the customer gets immediate feedback in the form of an email confirmation of the transaction.
Now that their program has shown value to its customers, Fastrac is sweetening the deal by offering double discounts to new enrollees. As of July, those who sign up and use their activated Fastrac Member Card at the pump receive twice the discount for a full 60 days after enrollment. That translates to instant savings of 14 cents on each gallon of gas purchased Monday through Saturday, and 20 cents per gallon on Sundays.
For Fastrac Markets LLC, which prides itself in being a locally-owned company, giving back to its customers offers impressive benefit for both. And if $5 million in discounts doesn’t say something about customer loyalty, what does?
Now in its 15th year, Fastrac Markets LLC, based in Syracuse, N.Y. has 44 stores and employs more than 400 people.