Horizon 2 — Innovating what's next for Shell Lion club

New roads to loyalty

Helping Shell redefine loyalty as a service for customers on and off the forecourt.

Else was brought in by the Shell global loyalty team to raise the value of their loyalty programme. Our work started with uncovering and redefining how loyalty was understood within the business and culminated in delivering powerful new ways for marketing and loyalty teams to push forward.

A bit of background

Shell have seen a decline in customer engagement of their loyalty scheme, despite an increase in customer base in the UK (over four million visits per month). The loyalty card was perceived not to be delivering the value that Shell customers expect of a premium fuel brand.

With a digitisation programme under way, and having already launched several digital products, including their first pay-at-the-pump app, Shell wanted to rethink how they engage with their customers on the forecourt.

Our initial brief was to translate their existing card-based loyalty scheme into an app-based experience.

New opportunities across the customer experience

We crafted four personas to reflect distinct user needs and behaviours. These personas became the cornerstone for developing an Experience Blueprint that mapped the customer journey.

With this forensic view of the overall CX it was clear that all the focus was on the forecourt, but the reasons to choose Shell and the whole motoring experience happened beyond the forecourt. A bigger view enabled us to identify far greater opportunities.

Identifying the opportunities

In close collaboration with the Shell Loyalty team, we developed service design concepts to make interacting with Shell feel more premium and more memorable.

We charted the customer journey, using an Experience Blueprint. This highlighted some fundamental opportunities before and after a visit that could deliver loyalty as part of the entire digital eco-system. It also surfaced some friction on the forecourt around payments.

A set of insight-led experience principles helped guide ideas to deliver value for both the customer and the business. They were used like a graphic equaliser to emphasise different experiences.

The five loyalty principles

Ideas to deliver now, soon, and later

From these activities, the true scope of work started to emerge. We then organised ideas and concepts that could be delivered on three horizons:

Now (within six months)

Soon (within 12 months)

Future (18 months+)

Else were highly professional, innovative and credible in our dealings with them on a bespoke process they undertake called ‘Blueprint’. We have used this method since, to look more deeply at our customer experience.

Carolyn McKeever — Global Head of Loyalty, Shell


The culmination of the design thinking was used to run a set of workshops with the wider Shell stakeholders, to understand how loyalty could be delivered as a service across all of their digital properties.

The work was a success and led to applying the same process for the global marketing teams at Shell.

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