I recently visited a new city for a few days. I had to stock up on groceries and the clerk attending to the “12 items or less” checkout asked me if I had a frequent shopper card to get a sizeable 50% discount on one of my items. I did not have a card, so right at the checkout, in the fast paced flow of “12 items or less,” the clerk used here POS terminal to enroll me in the chain’s loyalty program. In previous experiences I wouldn’t bother completing an application for a loyalty card because the process had too much “friction;” wait in line at a Customer Service counter, fill out paperwork, hand it back in, and in return get a plastic identity card assigned with a random number I would never remember. But this time was different. No paperwork, and I was able to choose my own unique identity code.
The store did not make me use THEIR (meaningless to me) identity to be tracked in THEIR system. This is good… If I visit the chain again, all I have to do is tell the clerk my mobile number and I’ll receive the benefit. (BTW… they don’t know this is a mobile number, to them it’s just my unique identity.)
Aside: US telephone numbers were engineered for easy memory.