Kwik Chek Pioneers Connected Customer Technologies
BONHAM, Texas — Kwik Chek Food Stores Inc. teamed with P97 Networks to create a mobile app, as well as a point-of-sale (POS) system that controls the fuel pumps, back-office and financial systems.
Both solutions build upon Microsoft Azure IoT (Internet of Things) services and other technologies. The first solution, PetroZone Mobile Commerce, is a mobile app that enables navigation, cashless payment and smart digital offers. The mobile app allows customers to connect to the cloud and use geolocation services to locate the nearest Kwik Chek location, reserve a fuel pump from the convenience of one's car, and find out about the availability of a car wash, ATM and other services.
From a security standpoint, the app allows mobile payment as opposed to swiping a debit card or credit card. “When you have credit card information stolen, all sorts of damage can occur, from identity theft to charges online," said Daniel Gaddy, chief technology officer for Kwik Chek. "With the PetroZone app, no cardholder data is ever stored or transmitted to or from the phone; even if you lose your phone, there are ways to wipe that phone remotely. It’s a far more secure method of payment.”
The second solution, PetroZone Retail Fuels Module, is a POS system intended to increase in-store traffic. It offers an opt-in feature that tracks customers' mobile purchase history and then can use the data to generate relevant digital discount offers, which are sent to customers' phones in real time while they're still onsite.
"Today, as an industry average, approximately 70 percent of our fuel customers never come inside the store,” says Kevin Smartt, CEO of Kwik Chek. “These offers are bringing more of them in, resulting in increased in-store sales from formerly fuel-only customers. It’s a big advantage for customers, too, who save money on things they’re likely to buy anyway.”
P97 Networks believed time was of the essence to create technology solutions to help boost sales at convenience stores and gas stations.
“We knew the time was right to deliver a world-class solution into retail fueling,” said Don Frieden, P97 Networks' president and CEO. “If you look at what’s going on in the industry, mobile commerce is opening up new channels to drive market innovation — everything from alternative payment methods to transforming the point-of-purchase experience for the consumer."
Bonham-based Kwik Chek operates 39 convenience stores and gas stations in Texas and Oklahoma.