Hoping to increase overall loyalty, PNC Financial Services Group Inc. is adding credit cards with rewards based on the consumer's relationship with the bank.
The new cards, which carry no annual fees, are the PNC CashBuilder Visa, the PNC Points Visa and the PNC Flex Visa, the Pittsburgh company said Tuesday.
"We are focused on understanding what our customers want and need to achieve their financial goals," Joseph Guyaux, PNC's president, said in a press release.
The credit cards feature benefits and rewards that increase based on the extent of the cardholder's relationship with the bank, Guyaux said.
The CashBuilder card enables consumers to earn 1.25% cash back on all net purchases.
Consumers who open a card account before the end of March will earn 1.75% cash back for the first billing cycle.
That promotional rate will continue for cardholders with a Performance Select Checking account.
Those with a PNC Performance checking account will earn 1.5% cash back after the promotional period.
The PNC Points card allows cardholders to earn four points per dollar spent on qualifying purchases such as groceries and gas.
Cardholders with a Performance Select checking account will receive a 75% bonus on points earned.
Customers with a Performance checking account will receive a 50% bonus.
Those with a Virtual Wallet account will receive a 25% bonus on points earned.
The Flex Visa is similar to the Points Card, but also enables consumers to save on interest and receive a longer introductory offer and a lower balance-transfer rate.
Cardholders who hold a qualifying checking account and meet minimum-balance requirements in that account or other linked accounts will receive enhanced benefits.
A full relationship program similar to Citigroup Inc.'s ThankYou program, which PNC appears to be emulating, is "a great way to extend your customer base," said Brian Riley, research director for TowerGroup of Needham, Mass.
But for rewards credit cards like this, consumers need to go into it with open eyes, he said.
For many cardholders, it could take at least three or four years just to get a $100 reward, Riley said.