Print in the Mix Coupon Redemption Jumps Nearly 10 Percent

According to data from promotions transaction settlement company Inmar, coupon redemption in the fourth quarter of 2008 grew nearly 10 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2007, the first jump in redemption since the early 1990s. Consumer response to coupons also remained strong for the year, with 2.6 billion coupons redeemed, the third year in a row at that level.

For years, 70 percent of coupons were redeemed in conventional supermarkets yet, in 2008, coupons redeemed at mass merchandisers accounted for almost 20 percent of all coupons redeemed, while conventional supermarkets comprised less than 64 percent of coupon redemption.

The methods marketers are using to distribute coupons are also changing. Methods that gained and lost ground in distribution and redemption volume are:

Gaining Losing? / Ground Ground
Direct Mail / FSIs
Internet / In-ads
Newspaper / In-packs
On Pack / Shelf Box
Shelf Pad / Handout

According to Inmar, marketers continue to believe in the power of coupons and made 5 percent more coupons available to consumers last year. At 317 billion coupons, distribution is both up from the previous year and back up to levels from a decade ago.

“While we can’t predict the future, it is safe to say that the traditional coupon is back in vogue for consumers,” said Inmar’s Jennifer Mauldin. “Even if the economy turns a corner sooner than later, a combination of factors have put coupons back on the radar of many consumers and introduced some to them for the first time.”

To read this Print in the Mix Fast Fact and additional print market research studies, go to Print in the Mix is a free and easily accessible clearinghouse of research on print media effectiveness, published by the Printing Industry Center at RIT and made possible by a grant from The Print Council (

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