Case Studies22% Increase in Center Store Sales

Gooseberries Fresh Food Market

Company Background

Gooseberries Fresh Food Market is a family owned and operated grocery store run by a family with over 100 years of experience. Remember the good old days when your neighborhood butcher greeted you by name and your local market was more than happy to special order any item you wanted? Gooseberries is bringing those days back. Their goal is to provide unparalleled service along with fresh and unique products you can’t find anywhere else.

Loyalty & Rewards Goals

    • Remain competitive with big box supermarkets
    • Drive center store sales
    • Provide a seamless and high end customer experience
    • Gain visibility into program performance

The Challenge

Competing with Big Box stores in Center Aisle

Leadership at Gooseberries had reached a decision to reinvest in their stores to emphasize perishable departments. They wanted to provide a unique experience for shoppers that would differentiate themselves from the growing threat of big box retailers. With that shift in focus, however, center store based grocery sales were declining due to price competition, and shoppers took notice. After using another program, leaders at Gooseberries were pointed towards AppCard by their wholesaler partner, Certco.

Getting Started with AppCard

Once we got going with AppCard, we noticed that our main competitor dropped the program they had been using. Shoppers were comparing us to the competitor’s old program, and were remarking on the ease of use that AppCard provided - you just have to enter your phone number and once an item is scanned you automatically get the points.

- David Speigelhoff, Owner

Leveraging Vendor Allowances

Once Gooseberries got started with AppCard, they went through a process of assessing their vendor allowances, and rather than applying them as discounts to items, they applied them as bonus points for the purchase of those items.

One of they keys we’ve discovered is to offer redeemable items the shoppers either need or love. For example, every month we offer at least one of our gallons of milk and paper towels available as redeemable items. We used to offer rotisserie chickens as a redeemable item but we ended up selling out of them and we didn’t have the rotisserie capacity to make enough of them in a day, which is a nice problem to have!


Overall, Gooseberries main goal was to drive traffic to center-aisle items. For this reason, they decided to use AppCard to offer bonus points on items in those categories to incentivize purchases.

In general, the way the program is structured incentivizes shoppers to purchase center-aisle items in order to bank points to redeem on the more high end items and experiences offered by Gooseberries.

We’ve found that shoppers are much more excited about earning points to use towards a strip steak, shrimp, or a custom cake than they are about saving $.30-$1.00 on an item.

I would tell other grocers that your staff is very good, and the other thing is that it’s a program that an independent retailer can use as much or as little as they like. But the more you use it, the better you’ll become, and you’ll still be totally in control of the program. There are a lot of loyalty programs where you get locked in, and you don’t end up having a lot of flexibility when it comes to your offers. AppCard offers so many different options that can easily accommodate the needs of independents.