Portal has announced a number of new updates to its popular cash back and rewards programs. Starting November 1, the company will transition its 1 percent cash back rewards program exclusively to Portal Select products. Additionally, they will double the base reward from 1 percent to 2 percent through the end of the year.
Two years ago, Portal—a do-it-all project management company for the custom integrator—launched the cash-back rewards program as a way to help its dealers realize immediate savings on all of their transactions made through the company’s massive online catalog. At launch, one percent of all purchases dealers made through the program went right back into the dealer’s pocket. This move will end the two-year subsidy for suppliers who are not participating in the Portal Select program, instead giving the supplier and dealer a bit of motivation to participate in and consider buying from the Portal Select program.
“We had a crazy idea and felt that dealers would get excited about a rewards program that paid them personally, allowing them to use their rewards any way they chose.” Kirk Chisholm, CEO of Portal, said in a statement. “We believed so strongly in the idea that we decided to fund it ourselves in order to prove to suppliers that dealers would respond. Dealers overwhelmed us with their response and we’ve now been able to transition the program over to suppliers, in order to sustain it.”
The goal of the program all along, Portal said, was to have manufacturers and distributors rethink their existing rebate programs to incentivize dealers to shift a larger percentage of their sales online. That, in turn, reduces the transactional cost for the supplier.
In order for a product to earn the ‘Portal Select’ badge, the company explained, it must be in stock, ship for free, arrive within three business days or less, and pays rewards. Portal Select suppliers pay Portal a small fee, which is how Portal makes its money and can afford the cash-back program. Dealers who buy direct with manufacturers or through buying groups, can also enjoy all the benefits of Portal Select, along with their existing custom negotiated pricing.
Once Portal had a large enough selection on its Portal Select platform, Chisholm explained, the company could then “flip the switch” on the rewards program. Since launching a year ago, Portal has added a wide range of brands and products, including: Atlona, AVPro Edge, Chief, Eero, JVC, Key Digital, Legrand, Logitech, Lutron, Luxul, ICE Cable, Samsung, Sonos, Ring, MartinLogan, Mount-It, Onkyo, OnQ, Origin Acoustics, Screen Innovations, Stewart Filmscreens, SurgeX, Structured Cable Products, TruAudio, Ubiquiti, URC, MSTR Brands, and more.
“We’d love to continue to pay the Portal reward on every single brand, we’re actually confident we’ll get there again soon,” Chisholm said. “For now we’re honored to have the support from so many top brands—we’re looking forward to supporting them and offering dealers a buying experience they can’t get anywhere else.”
Portal said its looking into expanding the Portal Select rewards program with a volume incentive that would give dealers the opportunity to earn even more rewards. That program could launch as soon as Q1 2019, the company said.