Internet print-at-home coupons (PAH) and paperless offers – collectively dubbed “digitally-discovered” coupons by Inmar – are making strides in the marketplace.
Consumers acquire paperless coupons from retailer and other websites and load them directly to their shopper loyalty accounts. They never manifest as paper, with discounts applied automatically to appropriate purchases at checkout when the shopper presents their loyalty card or unique individual identifier.
Inmar reported that redemption volume for PAH and paperless offers increased significantly in the first half of 2013 (H1 2013) as compared with the same period last year.
Redemption volume for Internet print-at-home coupons continued its steady quarter-over-quarter growth with 70.9 million PAH coupons redeemed in H1 2013 – up 12.1% compared to the first half of 2012. At the same time, exponential growth in redemption was seen among paperless, digital (“e-wallet”) coupons with a 234% increase in redemption volume in H1 2013 versus the same period last year. In just the first six months of 2013 Inmar settled, and observed settlement of, more paperless digital coupons (28.5 million) than in all of 2012 (27.5 million).
Although e-wallet promotions currently represent a relatively small segment of coupon activity, their continuing, and accelerating, growth is already having significant effect on the marketplace. The targeting and personalization capabilities inherent in these promotions are enabling marketers to effectively engage – in greater and greater numbers – shoppers who previously had not used coupons with any real regularity.
“The use of digital promotions continues to accelerate while the ease and efficiency of paper coupons remains high for both brands and value-minded consumers,” said Inmar CEO David Mounts. “The rapid growth in redemption volume we saw in the first half of 2013 for digitally delivered coupons is further indication that having the appropriate promotion mix is the best way to increase acquisitions and sales,” continued Mounts. “However, only by employing detailed analytics to thoroughly understand shopper behavior can marketers determine the optimal mix and effectively influence shoppers along the path to purchase.”
Meanwhile, among paper methods, Instant Redeemables (attached to product package) experienced the greatest growth in redemption in H1 2013 with 191.7 million of these coupons redeemed. The increase was a continuation of this method’s impressive growth trajectory and represented a 23% increase over redemptions for the same six month period last year.
Paralleling this redemption increase was an overall increase in coupon distribution. Marketers pushed out 170.4 billion offers to shoppers in H1 2013, a 2.1% uptick versus the same period last year. At the same time, however, overall coupon redemption was down 6.6% for the first half of the year compared to the same period in 2012 (1.39 billion vs. 1.49 billion).
Inmar processes and analyzes more than 2.3 billion coupons and related shopper engagement campaigns annually. In addition to providing promotion management, coupons processing, business intelligence and consulting, Inmar closely monitors coupon distribution and redemption across the country and regularly reports on trends and activity in this sector.