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J.C. Penney Entices Consumers With Rewards, Toys

J.C. Penney’s latest initiatives are designed to entice kids and parents alike.

The retailer has overhauled its rewards program by allowing shoppers to earn more perks, faster. Regular rewards members earn 1 point for every $2 they spend while for those that hold a JCP credit card it’s a one for one exchange. For every 200 points shoppers accrue, they receive $10 in rewards now with no limit to how many they can earn. The retailer sweetens the deal during reward events, offering $10 for every $50 spent.

“We know our J.C. Penney Rewards members shop and spend more than twice as much as non-Rewards customers. As we focus on growing revenue per customer, our customer loyalty program will be integral to enticing customers to shop often and spend more on every trip,” said Sherina Smith, vice president of loyalty and customer relationship management.

[See why retailers are focusing on rewards programs: Retailers Find That Loyalty Programs Make Dollars and Sense]

Members will also gain access to exclusive offers and prices on select goods. And again, credit card holders will enjoy even more benefits, some based on their card status and how much they spend annually.

JCP has also streamlined the way in which consumers can track and redeem their points on the company’s site or via an app.

In addition to the rewards changes, the retailer has added toys to the list of product categories it is reclaiming.

The department store, which recently added appliances back into its product mix, is now introducing toys in all doors. The move came after a positive response at the end of last year.

“Toys is a great example of listening to our customer and adding categories she’s asking for. We had toys in our holiday assortment for the first time in many years and the response was excellent,” Marvin R. Ellison, chairman and chief executive officer, said during the company’s fourth quarter earnings call. At the time, Ellison anticipated a slower rollout with toys trickling into some doors before others.

[See the other initiatives J.C. Penney has in the works: Transformation Nation: A Comparison of Department Store Survival Plans]

The retailer is going after the $20 billion industry with an assortment that includes Hasbro, Mattel, Playmobil and Fisher Price. The toy section will be located adjacent to the Disney Collection area in Penney’s stores and some will even feature a designated area where kids can try before parents buy. Online, consumers will find twice as many toys compared to last year, and by the holiday season, that number will increase even more.

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“We were extremely pleased by customer response and confidently made the decision to grow our toy assortment in stores and at We know that shoppers buy toys year-round and by creating a fun, inviting toy shop, with some of the biggest brands and hottest products, we will entice families to shop and spend more at J.C. Penney,” said John Tighe, executive vice president and chief merchant.