Liquid Barcodes


Evolving Excellence in k kiosk Switzerland

Paula Thomas, Chief Content Officer, Liquid Barcodes


This interview was done in early March 2020 – before the impact of Covid-19 affected us all. With convenience retail one of the few sectors continuing to operate amidst the pandemic, there has never been a more important time for retailers to connect with their customers.

Valora in Switzerland is one of Europe’s most innovative retailers that had invested in a digital loyalty programme, giving them tools they need to engage and communicate with their customers at this unique time.

Read about this exciting programme here:

As one of the most developed countries in the world with the highest nominal wealth per adult in the world, Switzerland is widely recognised and respected as a country with cities that boast an exceptional quality of life. With its “stable, prosperous and high-tech economy and great wealth“, its eight and a half million citizens enjoy a peaceful and prosperous lifestyle, so it’s no surprise to learn that it’s also a mature market when it comes to retailing, innovation and the loyalty landscape. The leading grocery retailers have offered loyalty programmes for several years, thereby educating Swiss users about the benefits of registering and sharing their purchase data in order to earn exciting rewards. They also ensure that any loyalty programmes in the convenience industry will need to demonstrate some compelling benefits for users in order to earn a place in their busy lives.

In this article, we discuss the latest ideas and insights from Valora – the leading foodvenience provider in the country in an exciting interview with Michael Wirth, their Head of Digital. A long time partner of the company even before he joined the team in this key role, he shares some of the latest loyalty enhancements they’ve launched for their “k kiosk” app-based programme that truly embody the guiding principles of the company – “nearby, quick, convenient and fresh” – increasingly evident in their innovative online programme, as they’ve done so successfully offline in their stores since their humble beginnings in the 19th century!

Michael WirthMichael Wirth, Head of Digital in Valora. 

Launching Loyalty

When it initially launched in 2017, the k kiosk app focused on two key consumer benefits: firstly, the simple benefit of regular discount coupons as well as a digital stamp card to track coffee customers and their spend. Coffee customers get every sixth coffee free, as well as generous incentives to download the app, on their birthday and any time they recommend the programme to their friends and family.  These simple benefits were also supplemented by a number of gamification campaigns that continually drive engagement.

While this early strategy has proven an excellent approach to begin to connect with value-conscious and coffee-drinking consumers, it was clear to Wirth that higher-spending customers deserved a more compelling proposition with greater recognition and rewards. And so began the careful planning and launch of this latest phase of their customer connection strategy, ensuring their digital channels deliver the same ultra-convenient experience for customers that their incredible network of small format stores has always done.

k kiosk app rewardThe k kiosk app offers a generous reward – every 6th coffee is free!

Asking Customers

As so many convenience shoppers simply “grab and go”, our industry has (perhaps unfairly) for many years assumed that convenience shoppers did not expect to be recognised or rewarded for their loyalty. In order to understand if this was true or merely an assumption, the Valora team decided to actually ask their customers. A simple yet often overlooked step when it comes to building something that will work! And the results were exciting and not too surprising – customers that plan more and spend more, expect more! The message was clear – beyond stamps and coupons, they wanted the option to earn for every purchase and every transaction, and so a points system was designed and added to the platform to ensure exactly that! For loyalty marketers, points are sometimes undervalued in terms of their power to drive behaviour and enable relevant rewards, however Valora’s customers understand the value exchange of loyalty programmes so well, that it was clearly an essential mechanic that customers would appreciate.

k kiosk loyalty appThe k kiosk loyalty app has recently launched exciting improvements for convenience customers in Switzerland.

Listening and Learning

The k kiosk’s new points feature went live in December 2019 and Wirth is excited with its potential to enable the company to continually evolve and perfect their customer’s experiences, now enabled by a complete “closed loop” feedback system that also ensures that customers feel “heard”.

With its “soft launch” phase now several months in the market gathering insights around adoption and usage, k kiosk is now focused on its in-store marketing campaign designed to excite and educate its customers throughout the country on the points programme, as well as continue to promote the delightful “share and care” coupons that this award-winning convenience brand is already famous for.

NACS Insight Convenience Summit Europe

Valora received the NACS Insight Retail Technology Award in at the 2017 NACS Insight Convenience Summit Europe

Eternally Evolving

When asked what he’s planning next for this innovative programme, Wirth is excited about the possibilities of payment-linked loyalty with its proven ability to simplify the collection of data for their entire customer base, even those the segment who currently spend less than others and remain laser-focused on speed and simplicity. He is also working with his buying colleagues to connect with suppliers who realise the potential of behavioural data at such scale and how it can be combined with the power of mobile as the most intimate connected channel to customers. He has even added a “like” button to the app to capture additional glimpses of insights that can be shared anonymously with their manufacturing partners to deliver even-more compelling benefits for k kiosk customers.

What Do We Know “For Sure”

Wirth’s key insights for our industry is that “one size will never fit all” – specific feature sets can (and should) be designed to delight customers so much that they install the k kiosk app permanently. Only then will they be sure that the brand is always as “nearby” digitally as it has always been physically.

k kiosk logo

About Us:

Liquid Barcodes is a leading global loyalty and digital marketing technology company specialized for the convenience store and foodservice industries. Our proprietary cloud-based technology platform allow retailers to create and manage their digital marketing campaigns with a proprietary process we call the “customer connection cycle’ to engage, promote and reward customers activities in real-time across digital and media channels.

How we do it:

We have developed the most advanced loyalty and digital marketing technology platform specifically for convenience store and foodservice retailers globally.

Retailers use our self-service dashboard to create and manage loyalty driven marketing campaigns that increase purchases with their existing customers, as well as effectively target and acquire new customers through partners or paid media channels.

One core component of live loyalty is gamification. We have gamified branding, loyalty and promotions. We believe this approach is essential in order to get customers’ attention and ultimately truly engage them with repeatable actions thereby winning their loyalty.

Check out some of our exciting/proven results here:

About Me:

Paula Thomas

Chief Content Officer, Liquid Barcodes and Independent Loyalty Consultant

With over twenty-five years marketing experience, I specialise in loyalty marketing consulting, managing consumer loyalty propositions, strategy and operations. In addition to working with Liquid Barcodes, my clients have included Telefonica O2, Three Mobile, Electric Ireland, Allied Irish Bank and The Entertainer, as well as Avios – the global points currency for some of the world’s top airlines. I am also a former judge for the Loyalty Magazine Awards. 


Blog post

Paying for Fuel With an App Is Convenient… Until It Isn’t

Paying for fuel using a stored payment method through your smartphone and the store’s app is an amazingly convenient concept. Drive up, link your phone and the pump, pick your payment method, and fuel up. In under 5 minutes, your fuel tank is full and you’re on your way and you never touched a payment […]

Blog post

For the Love of Convenience

This summer, my family took the proverbial summer road trip vacation. First, we drove from our home in Virginia up north to the great land of lobstah in wicked cool New England. After that, we drove from there down to the endless sandy beaches in the Outer Banks of North Carolina.     1,500 miles! […]

Blog post

Save Thousands in Credit Card Fees With ACH

Visa and Mastercard announced an increase in interchange fees earlier in the year and retailers are taking action and sending a message by migrating their customers to new solutions, including mobile app-based ACH payments, and in the process increasing profits by not only reducing credit card fees but also boosting loyalty via innovative app-based incentive […]

Blog post

Subscription Programs Are Economically Smart Investments

Monthly subscriptions to products and services are economically smart investments for retailers and customers With a recession looming and gas prices still at record-high levels, customers are tightening their grip on their wallets. But this doesn’t mean they’ll be turning their backs on convenience store purchases and there are ways you can weather the impending […]

Blog post

Converting Impulse Shoppers to Automatic Customers

Subscription programs for drinks and snacks encourage customers to change from impulse buyers to automatic customers   Customers stop at gas stations and convenience stores to buy fuel, for beverages and snacks and to use the bathroom, essentially in that order of priority. A NACS survey of gas-buying customers found that half went into the […]

Blog post

Maxol Launches First-of-Its-Kind Loyalty App

Maxol, Ireland’s largest family-owned forecourt and convenience retailer, announced it has launched a new customer loyalty app with never-before-seen features in the Irish market. After more than a century serving Irish customers, Maxol’s 240+ stores and service stations are located throughout Ireland and have enjoyed global recognition for their best-in-class operations, store design and offers. […]

Blog post

Delivering Personalized Content With Machine Learning and Image Recognition

Build personalized customer connections, improve efficiency, and make intelligent, data-driven decisions using machine learning and image recognition.   It’s 7:15 in the morning and a customer – Amy – is on her way to work. She is on the hunt for coffee and breakfast and stops at a convenience store. She opens her store app […]

Blog post

Sweet Tea and Coffee Subscription Beverage Programs Brew Recurring Revenue

As summer nears, consumers are turning their attention towards refreshing iced beverages and iced tea is a hot seller this time of year, especially when sold with a subscription beverage program. Sweet tea might be the quintessential drink of southerners in the U.S, but the rest of the country has developed a taste for the […]

Blog post

Circle K’s Use of Beacon Technology to Activate Car Wash Subscription Program

Beacon Technology and Car Wash Subscription Programs Beacon technology used in tandem with a customer-facing car wash subscription program revolutionizes the customer experience by providing a quick, convenient experience. Innovation is the key to continued growth and ensuring a frictionless customer experience should be top of mind for any retailer. Circle K’s vast global network […]

Blog post

Unlimited Car Washes!

Subscription programs for car washes are a hot trend in convenience retail.

Blog post

Car Wash Program Drives Sales for United Pacific

Car wash programs are revenue drivers for convenience stores and fueling stations around the globe. Making sure the process is convenient and cost-effective for customers increases traffic and drives in-store sales. Oftentimes, car wash units occupy a small corner of the lot and do not receive much attention. This is not the case for those […]

Blog post

Danish Railway Rewards Riders with DSB Plus

The Danish railway system, known as DSB, is going the distance to reward customers by partnering with convenience retailer 7-Eleven to deliver points towards food and coffee simply for riding the rails. Whether commuting or travelling longer distances, riders who join DSB Plus earn points whenever they travel within Denmark. DSB is an abbreviation for […]

Blog post

Subscriptions for the win!

Amazon Prime is, by nature, a subscription under the auspice of membership. Pay an annual fee, get 2-day shipping and exclusive deals. Amazon took it one level further with “Subscribe & Save” where you can get everyday – and not so everyday – items shipped to you on a regular schedule.  In the early days […]

Blog post

Customer Retention Program of Circle K Vietnam

As the first international convenience store brand to launch in Vietnam, Circle K has over a decade of expertise catering to the needs of the 96 million residents of this huge country, operating a network of over four hundred convenience stores each open 24 hours a day! So launching an outstanding customer retention program was […]

Blog post

Stinker Stores Named Best New Loyalty Program in the U.S.

        2021 Best New Loyalty Program  Stinker Stores’ new loyalty program offers multiple redemptions with a single scan and stands out with a gamification feature to keep customers engaged. This article is originally published on CStoreDecisions and written by Erin Del Conte | October 28, 2021 Stinker Stores, with 103 convenience stores across Idaho, […]

Liquid Barcodes

Put a rocket under your loyalty program

With our loyalty platform, we help design and operate world-class, tailor-made subscription and reward programs that make sure your customers always come back.

Book a Demo →

We are trusted by global brands.

Convenience retailers all over the world have engaged and rewarded consumers with our tailor-made loyalty programs.

To our case studies →

Liquid Barcodes
Liquid Barcodes
Liquid Barcodes
Liquid Barcodes

Convenience retailers all over the world have engaged and rewarded consumers with our tailor-made loyalty programs.

To our case studies →

Liquid Barcodes
Liquid Barcodes
Liquid Barcodes
Liquid Barcodes