Starbucks has never had a problem with customer engagement or customer loyalty, evidenced by its highly impressive My Starbucks Rewards loyalty program.
And because of that ever-growing loyalty program, the rich are getting richer: Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz said during the company’s third-quarter earnings conference call on July 23 that the My Starbucks Loyalty program membership rose 28% since the same period last year. That translates to 10.4 million active My Starbucks Rewards members, including 6.2 million Gold members (up 32% in the past year).
“MSR continues to be our most important business driver as new members contribute not only short-term increases in revenue and profit, but also to long-term loyalty for years to come,” Schultz said, according to Seeking Alpha. “The significant increase in Gold level membership means that an increased number of our MSR customers are transacting in our stores more frequently than before with MSR members now accounting for approximately 30% of total tender in North America. And our mobile commerce platform is literally stronger than ever. We have reached the milestone where mobile payments now represent 20% of all in-store transactions in our U.S. stores, more than double the figure from only two years ago, and we are now processing nearly nine million mobile transactions each week.”
Schultz said the plan has always been to bring its My Starbucks Rewards membership and digital capabilities to scale.
“And we are now there, and so then leverage the Starbucks brand, our deep engagement with customers, our global store footprint, and our world leading mobile digital card and loyalty assets to create the foundation of a much broader external mobile digital and loyalty platform,” he explained. “One that would extend to purchases and experiences outside of the four walls of the Starbucks store.”
Schultz touted the company’s third-quarter performance among “the most remarkable quarters in our over 23 years as a public company.”
Global comp store sales grew 7%, driven by a stunning 4% increase in global traffic.
“Let me put that 4% traffic increase figure into perspective,” Schultz explained. “A 4% increase in global traffic on a business of our scale translates into having served over 23 million more customer occasions in Q3 of 2015 than in Q3 of 2014, or an average of approximately 25 more customer occasions every day from every single store in our nearly 10,000 store global comp base. Starbucks Q3 of fiscal 2015 was a fantastic quarter across the board, clearly evidencing a continuation of the strong momentum we've seen across our business and around the world this fiscal year and solid in-store execution by our people who now deliver the Starbucks experience through nearly 80 million customer transactions from over 22,500 stores in 66 countries around the world every week.”