Published on June 30th, 2017 | by Chuck29
Negative Changes to Staples Rewards Program starting July 1 [No Online Earn, No Free Shipping, & More]
Staples sent out an email with some changes coming to the Staples Rewards program. The changes take effect July 1, 2017.
- No more rewards earned at all for online purchases. Thoughts: This is a big hit which they swallowed inconspicuously within the email.
- No more Plus level. It used to be that Base level gets 2%; after spending $500 you are Plus and get 3%; after spending $1k you are Premier and get 5%. Now we remain Base until spending $1k and become Premier with 5% benefit. Thoughts: no big deal, makes sense to simplify the program. (Note: This understanding is based on my belief that there is some misinformation in the Membership Levels section due to copy-and-paste errors.)
- All Staples Rewards members get free next-day shipping on orders $49.99 or more. Thoughts: The few times I’ve ordered they deliver fast, usually with their own truck, not the postal service. Certainly good to know it’ll always come next-day for all Staples Rewards members; makes the store more reliable and even faster than Amazon.
- No more free shipping without a minimum. This negative change they almost pulled right past me, but if I’m not mistaken Staples used to offer free shipping for all Staples Rewards members. Looks like there’s now a $49.99 minimum. (Oddly, when I add a $25 Gap e-gift card to my cart, it gives me free shipping even on less than $49 order.)
- Signup for a Staples More Account and get 5% back both in-store and online. This gets you 5% online, and it also helps you skip the Base level straight to the Premier level. Thoughts: Most importantly, those who signup for a More credit line will be eligible to receive 5% Rewards for online purchases.
The biggest news is that you won’t earn Staples Rewards online unless you signup for the More account. The More account looks to be like a line of credit for businesses, and I imagine it comes with a credit check process. Personally, I don’t order much from staples.com, but those who do might consider signing up for the More program. Hopefully, it won’t count against 5/24, and will just appear as an inquiry.
[Update: Staples support makes it sound like it’s an ordinary credit card, which means it’ll likely count toward 5/24, and you might need to actually pay with the Staples card (and lose your Chase INK rewards) to get the 5%. In that case, it’s a non-starter for most of us.]
The new $49.99 requriement for free shipping will mean I probably won’t be ordering anything from Staples any time soon.
I’m probably missing some analysis of the change, drop a comment below if you notice anything else or different.