Monday, July 1, 2013

Don't base digital shopper activity on ecoupons.. yet

Research just published shows the growth of electronic coupon usage slowing. Does this mean the predicted dominance of ecoupons has stumbled before it's learnt to run?
In a recent report on this subject the use of money off coupons has now grown in usage to cover 90% of all consumers.  However digital coupons have only grown in use by 9% over the same period. 

It therefore seems that paper-based redemption methods are more popular than ever, but that ecouponing hasn't got the mass adoption it should have.
Why is this? 

Here's a couple of possible reasons:
1. Retailers don't support them
The major supermarkets have so far failed to embrace digital vouchers. Even my Tesco Clubcard app on my mobile phone, which uses a simple bar code shown on the screen, only works on a limited number of their scanning tills (and none of their smaller local stores near me, which seem to be the type growing in number right now). Yet I walk in with a handful of paper - based ones (from newspapers, magazines and even self-printed at home via sites such a and they all bleep through with no problem.
2. Brands are slow to use them
Perhaps as a result of the point above, even the major FMCG brands (typically the early adopters of these sorts of things) have not taken up the opportunity to use electronic coupons in any sizeable numbers.
Perhaps when both the retailers and brands collectively get their act together on ecouponing, then there will suddenly be lots of  uses, linked in with tracking and other eCRM initiatives for the ideal digital shopper marketing campaign.
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