Why Your Clients Should Add Coupons to Their Promotional Mix

Fri Mar 17, 2017

Kathy Crosett

The recently published 2K17 Coupon Intelligence Report from Valassis reveals that print remains the couponcoupon format of choice for consumers. But the report points out a noticeable shift from previous years. More consumers are using paperless coupons, with millennials leading the digital way.

While the percentages of Gen Xers and Baby Boomers who use coupons has dropped slightly in the past year, millennials are clearly watching their pennies. In 2016, the number of millennials using coupons rose from 88% to 94%. These younger consumers are using both paper and digital coupons to save money and discover new products.

When it comes to convincing consumers to try something new, whether it’s baby food, shampoo, or batteries, manufacturers and retailers should turn to coupons. Research shows that 86% of consumers can be influenced to put something different in their shopping cart when they have a coupon that cuts the price.

Marketers use a number of different channels to release coupons. Here’s where shoppers are finding them:

  • Print sources – newspapers, booklets, direct mail – 83%
  • Store circulars – 84%
  • Online – 75%

As the above numbers show, over 80% of consumers will maintain or increase their use of paper coupons in 2017. If your clients want to connect with more consumers, encourage them to place some of their coupons on digital channels. Over 91% of consumers expect to boost their use of the digital format. In the past year, the number of shoppers who prefer to receive coupons on their smartphones increased from 24% to 32%.

Your clients should also know that paperless coupons are the way to the wallets of African American and Hispanic consumers. Sixty-four percent of African Americans search for discounts on their phones while they are in stores, and 79% of Hispanics do the same. These figures are substantially higher than the average rate of 55%. Discount notifications by phone sway 64% of African Americans and 75% of Hispanics to switch brands while they are in the store shopping.

Hispanic shoppers are focused on coupons of all types, with 91% reading through store circulars before they go shopping. And, 51% of these consumers are swayed to visit a different retailer because they’ve seen ads for better prices or deals. Forty-five percent of Hispanics also choose stores based on whether paperless coupons are accepted.

If your clients are rolling out a new product or service, advise them to promote it with a coupon campaign. Doing so will encourage more consumers to give it a try. Extending the coupon campaign over several weeks will also reinforce the habit of selecting your client’s product when shoppers are in the store.

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About Kathy Crosett

Kathy is the Research Director for SalesFuel. She holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Vermont and oversees a staff of researchers, writers and content providers for SalesFuel.

View all posts by Kathy Crosett