Retailers and Singapore Public Transit Use Incentives To Change Behavior

Monetary incentives are powerful when it comes to changing behavior. Brands and retailers typically use incentives to change drive trial or push sales. The Singapore Metro Rail Transit (SMRT) appears to be taking cues from the retail space and using incentives to change commuter behavior to drive efficiencies.

Crowded trains and buses are a reality for most big cities, and common work schedules across large populations mean the majority of people are commuting during narrow time periods. SMRT is using discounts to get more people to ride public trains and buses during off-peak hours. They currently offer a 50 cent discount for early bird commuters who arrive at their destination before 7:45am on weekdays, thus avoiding the morning rush.

Additionally, SMRT is using incentives to encourage residents and visitors alike to use public transportation instead of other forms of transportation to get to large events such as the Formula 1 race held in October – thus cutting down on road traffic in addition to driving their own sales.

The impact on actual train crowding may not be huge, but speaking as a commuter, every little bit of extra space helps.

Perhaps retailers can reexamine their our incentives by looking at the efforts of the SMRT. Could incentives be used to reduce congested shopping times? Have any retailers enticed you to change your shopping patterns for a coupon or special?

Contributed by Integer Asia-Pacific

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