Aloha assigns Aloha POS Category ID values in the Family and Major Group Punchh fields. The values that are assigned to these Punchh server fields for each transaction line item can be configured in several different ways.
This guide explains each of these methods
Aloha Punchh Categories explained
Aloha POS has 2 Classes of Categories:
Punchh requires that for each menu item that is sent to Punchh, that item should always be sent with:
A single value in the Punchh Family Group field
A single value in the Punchh Major group field
For Aloha ONLY the sales/retail categories meet the requirement the each Aloha item belongs to 1 & ONLY 1 category
Default Item Punchh Family Group Major Group Value assignment
For every line item on a POS transaction, the Punchh integration will send the Aloha assigned Sales/Retail Category ID in to Punchh in the Punchh POS Family Group and Major Group field
Designated Categories Feature
The Designated Category Feature allows a brand to utilize non-sales categories ID’s instead of ONLY sales and retail categories to be assigned to items’ details when sent to PUNCHH in the family/major groups.
The Client will need provide to Punchh Support/Implementations which non-sales categories they'd like to use in place of the item’s Sales/Retail category when the item’s details are sent to Punchh in the Punchh Family/Major Group
The Punchh POS Engineering team will then set these on the Punchh Aloha configuration server to be sent down to the brands NCR Aloha sites
The menu items must have distinct membership in the provided Aloha categories... i.e. Each Aloha item may only occur in 1 & ONLY 1 of the list of categories provided to Punchh POS Engineering
Designated Categories w/Dual Group Membership
For Version 22.214.171.124 and later of Aloha integrations, this feature provides a way to combine the default Aloha integration Sales/Retail Category behavior with the Designated Category Feature
With the sub-feature of Designated Categories Activated, Aloha will send the item’s default Sales/Retail category in the Punchh Major Group field and the Item/ Designated Category ID in the Punchh Family Group data field
As of 10/03/2020 OlO online ordering does not support sending dual values int he Aloha sales details to Punchh in the receipt details.
This dual group reporting feature should not be activated when using OlO for online ordering directly integrated with Punchh until OlO can match this category feature
Substitute Category Text Value for ID Value Feature
The purpose of this feature is to substitute numeric ALOHA category ID values with the categories text value. This feature simplifies the use of PUNCHH major and family groups for earning and redeeming rules when there are multiple POS types in use.
Does this require the designated category feature?
The brand will tell us the name (text-value) of the categories they’d like to use, or give us the number (numeric-value) of the categories they’d like to use, then we make the rules, so it’s up to the brand to let us know what categories they’d like to use.
The client/sites cannot use this text feature without providing designated categories (ie. using the text substitution for the default sales categories)
The default setting is numbers. If the text is not detected in category array vs numbers, numbers is default.
Does the text value substitute for both family and major groups?
YES it does - Punchh uses the default category for the major group and family group … the default category that aloha assigns to each category.
How to identify when designated categories are enabled?
It’s a POS setting // The brand chooses to use this option or not, and the brand will inform us (Punchh) if they would like to use this feature.
How to ID when substitution category text is enabled?
See log snippet below (Aloha.INI) … this snippet shows Text substituted for Numeric values i.e. “Pork Entrees” is a Text value, if it were to be a Numeric value, there would be a category number (i.e. 1, 2, 3, etc.) whatever was assigned in ALOHA, and given to us by the brand:
2 <category>Pork Entres</category> <Actual Category Name = Pork Entrees?
5</redeemitemcategory> (For the text example, are we going to see this in the log/pos config files?)
What happens when the designated text categories don’t match case sensitivity:
The TEXT categories are NOT case sensitive, so there will not be any errors if there are uppercase letters and lowercase letters configured for the categories.
IF the TEXT categories are not spelled correctly (spelling has to match what’s in ALOHA & for Punchh see example below) then software will not work. It's not case sensitive, but the text will need to match what's configured in ALOHA.
<category>Pork Entres</category> <Actual Category Name = Pork Entrees?
What happens if one item belongs to multiple categories?
If a Budlight Beer item belongs to two separate categories i.e. DRAFT & BEER, and that Budlight is the same item number in ALOHA, whichever category is first (lowest category number assigned in ALOHA) will be selected by default for Punchh.