A Big Mac will appear on one side of the McDonald’s app

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McDonald’s announced Tuesday that, after months of testing, it would launch its first nationwide loyalty program on July 8th.

The fast food giant is joining rival chains like Popeyes from Restaurant Brands International and Taco Bell from Yum Brands to develop reward programs to help retain the digital customers the companies gained during the pandemic. Chipotle Mexican Grill announced Tuesday an expansion of its existing program to offer members more redemption options.

Loyalty programs can lead to more frequent visits and higher average checks, and restaurants can provide valuable consumer insights.

McDonald’s began testing the program in November and slowly expanded it to other regions in its home market. While it has successful loyalty programs in other countries like France, this is the first nationwide rollout in the US

The chain’s U.S. President Joe Erlinger told analysts in April that the company had nearly $ 1.5 billion in digital revenue in the first quarter, including orders through its digital kiosks, mobile apps, and delivery platforms. But the loyalty program could add that number even further.

The program allows customers to earn 100 points for every dollar spent. You can work towards 16 reward options divided into four different tiers. The simplest items, such as hash browns or a cheeseburger, only cost 1,500 points to redeem. A Happy Meal or Big Mac brings back 6,000 points for members.

To encourage customers to join the loyalty program, they collect 1,500 points after placing their first order as a reward member.

McDonald’s hopes the program will also help personalize the customer experience. In February, Alycia Mason, vice president of digital, media and customer relationship management for the company, said employees will greet loyalty members by name as they move through the drive-through lane. Customers will also receive a personalized email after picking up their orders containing upcoming offers tailored to them.

McDonald’s has also worked to incorporate its new loyalty program into its broader range of technologies. The program is part of the company’s new “MyMcDonald’s” platform, which brings together various technology investments such as apps and digital menus and makes it easier for customers to order and pay for their meals.

McDonald’s stocks are up more than 8% this year, equating to a market value of about $ 180 billion.