Apple Card announced on Friday that its 3% cash-back card-linked offers at Walgreens would also be valid for drive-thru purchases and on purchases made through the drug retailer’s e-commerce site. Because of Covid-19, merchants are seeing a significant shift in sales to online, and away from in-store.
Covid-19 has upended many business models—including those related to card-linked offers. Historically, CLO has been used to drive in-store sales. But with many brick-and-mortar stores shuttered around the world, card-issuers and CLO publishers are pivoting to drive delivery, pick-up, drive-thru and online purchases. AppleCard/Walgreens is just one example: Numerous others including CardLinx members Harvey Nichols and 24S LVMH have taken similar steps, using card-linking to drive e-commerce sales. Long after Covid-19 is gone, merchants will increasingly leverage CLO to drive omni-channel sales.