Capital

Sweetgreen’s New Subscription

Popular fast-casual salad chain Sweetgreen launched its first loyalty subscription: the Sweetpass. Following the likes of other subscription models like Taco Bell’s $10-per-month Taco Lover’s Pass or Olive Garden’s now discontinued Never Ending Pasta Pass, healthy alternative Sweetgreen is hoping to hook customers at the prime time of New Year’s Resolutions.

While other brands offer loyalty points systems of items free of additional cost after paying for the membership, the $10 Sweetpass grants consumers a daily discount of $3 per day for 30 days. With share prices having dropped since the initial November IPO, Sweetgreen’s new move reflects a strategy to make the occasional customer a regular. Although the program is currently a pilot set to end in mid-February, it may be renewed if it proves to be a success. 

Sweetgreen’s original loyalty program, which ended in March 2021, used to give $9 in credit for every $99 spent in the restaurants, this 10% margin ended up being quite costly for the chain. The program was also renowned for its special events such as exclusive product tastings and the annual Sweetlife Music Festival, to which Black-status (customers spending $2,500+ annually) members received free access. 

The Sweetpass can only be used through the Sweetgreen mobile app, reflecting how restaurants are leaning heavily on digital ordering. Nearly half of the company’s sales came from app, website, and in-person “scan to pay” orders. Digital customers spent 20% more than non-digital, in-person dining customers. 

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