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1. (WO2001001320) SYSTEM AND METHOD OF PROVIDING PROMOTIONAL PRICES TO A USER AND ACCUMULATING INCENTIVES TO A USER

Pub. No.:    WO/2001/001320    International Application No.:    PCT/US1999/014752
Publication Date: Fri Jan 05 00:59:59 CET 2001 International Filing Date: Tue Jun 29 01:59:59 CEST 1999
IPC: G06Q 30/00
Applicants: PLANET RX
CHONG, James
CHAN, Joseph
TANG, Henry
LAM, Robert
Inventors: CHONG, James
CHAN, Joseph
TANG, Henry
LAM, Robert
Title: SYSTEM AND METHOD OF PROVIDING PROMOTIONAL PRICES TO A USER AND ACCUMULATING INCENTIVES TO A USER
Abstract:
A computer-implemented method and system for promoting a business are provided. The method can be used with an electronic network, preferably the World Wide Web. A vendor program running on a vendor system (330) displays promotional items on a promotional Web page (302). When a customer selects promotional items (306), the vendor program queries a database (304) to determine the customer's eligibility to participate in the business promotion. An ineligible customer (318) is offered the opportunity to purchase the items at a non-promotional rate (324), or to cancel the order (326). The promotional items are delivered (342) to an eligible customer (344) at the promotional rate. An eligible customer is also sent a persistent cookie (316) that is used to notify the vendor program to display a non-promotional Web page during the customer's subsequent visits to the vendor's Web site. The eligible customer is sent a URL link with an encrypted unique key (336) for associating referred new customers (400) to the customer. An incentive is rewarded (406) to the customer for each referred customer who participates in the business program. A tally Web page displays referred customer information. Incentive awards can be selected from a redemption Web page. Upon selection of an incentive award, the vendor program updates the tally and redemption pages, and the database. The vendor program makes arrangements to have the incentives delivered to the referring customer. Each additional customer is provided a URL with a unique encrypted key and has the opportunity to earn incentives by referring others to the vendor's business promotion.