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Lidl Plus has the digital receipt

At the beginning of next week, Lidl will officially launch its digital customer loyalty programme in Germany. This marks the beginning of a new era of customer-related shopping basket analysis in discount retailing. In addition, Europe’s largest retail sales banner has solved another problem: with Lidl Plus, the discounter not only offers discounts untypical for discounters, but also the digital receipt.

Since the beginning of this year, retailers have to provide receipts in Germany. This has caused a lot of trouble, as it has considerably increased costs for companies and the environment. As many retailers in Germany had introduced the rule that a receipt is only printed if the shopper wants it.

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With the official launch of Lidl Plus, users of the app now receive their receipt in digital form. This is not trivial, as the authorities require in the cash register security ordinance that receipts cannot be copied in order to prevent evasion of sales tax. Among other things, Lidl has made its digital receipts unique for the tax authorities by means of a barcode on the digital code.

Returns of goods become easier

This makes it much easier for users of the app to return goods in Lidl stores. They don’t lose the receipt. When goods are returned, the barcode is simply scanned from the smartphone display at the checkout.

Meanwhile, Lidl’s POS software supplier GK Software has launched an initiative for the digital receipt, which offers a solution for all retailers as well as for all POS software. With eMailBon.de, GK Software makes it possible to comply with the legal requirements regarding the obligation to issue receipts and to reduce the expensive and environmentally harmful paper printing at the same time. The solution is already integrated in the standard version in all GK POS software versions, but is also to be made available to other POS software providers.

GK offers solution also for anonymous purchase

Unlike Lidl’s customer loyalty app, customers can remain anonymous with this solution. The legal requirements for the obligation to issue receipts in accordance with the Kassensicherungsverordnung (Cash Security Regulation) are implemented and the expensive paper printing can be reduced. Consumers have the option of accessing their receipts anonymously and securely via eMailBon.de using a browser. In addition, every receipt can be sent by e-mail on request.

Whenever a receipt is needed – for guarantee purposes, for tax purposes or for resale – it is available in the customer’s letterbox. Consumers not only benefit from the good feeling of having done something for the environment. The chaos of notes in shoe boxes or faded, illegible receipts are also a thing of the past.

Lidl Plus works Europe-wide

After extensive testing, Lidl has launched its customer loyalty app not only in Germany: Lidl Plus is also being launched in Spain, Belgium, the Netherlands, Denmark, Austria, Poland and Great Britain. Users of the app can also use it internationally in Lidl branches outside their home country.

All purchases made within a month are added up in the discount collector. Customers can reach different levels and receive an exclusive coupon for each level.  Newly registered Lidl Plus users receive a 5 Euro discount on their next purchase over 30 Euros.

Lidl’s promotional video for the launch of its digital loyalty card in Germany. (Video: Lidl) 

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Björn Weber

Björn Weber has been a journalist, analyst and consultant specialising in the retail and consumer goods industry for over 20 years. Prior to founding Fourspot, which is publishing The Retail Optimiser, Björn Weber headed the international analyst group LZ Retailytics. Previously, he was Research Director Retail Technology and Head of Planet Retail in Germany. Before that, Björn Weber was editor for IT & logistics topics at Lebensmittel Zeitung for eight years. Björn Weber is a member of the jury of the Retail Technology Award (Reta Europe) of the EHI. He is a regular speaker at events of the EHI, the NRF, industry media and the Consumer Goods Forum.

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