Coupons Benefit More Than the Consumer: How Retailers Can Maximize Returns
According to a recent Forrester Research report, U.S. online retail sales grew 12.6 percent in 2010 to reach $176.2 billion and are expected to reach $278.9 billion in 2015. As e-commerce has grown, so too has the number of consumers shopping online. This online surge provides an opportunity for retailers to offer strategic deals and coupons, increasing sales and ensuring customer loyalty.
Coupons, deals, discounts — however you say it, bargain shopping remains a hot topic. Even with an economy that’s showing signs of recovery, consumers are just too savvy and technologically connected to pay retail prices. According to a recent Harris Poll conducted by RetailMeNot.com, 82 percent of online shoppers are more loyal to businesses that offer regular discounts than businesses that offer occasional discounts. The benefits associated with coupons go beyond just the consumer. Retailers can gain positive returns by offering deals. In fact, coupons rate as the number three driver of retail business behind SEO and a company’s house list. Below is a list of the benefits for retailers that offer discounts, as well as some best practices to maximize their return.
1. Remain competitive and encourage consumer loyalty. No longer content to just search for the lowest prices, today’s consumers actively search for coupons to maximize their savings. One of the best ways to reach these bargain-hunting shoppers is by offering exactly what they are looking for — a deal. If a retailer consistently offers deals, especially those targeted at return customers, in all likelihood, those customers will come back. The converse of that is also true. If a retailer doesn't offer discounts, or the discounts are inconsistent, they will likely not be top of mind for most consumers.
2. Target brand-loyal consumers. Many consumers are looking for a specific brand or item, regardless of retail outlet. Retailers can target these consumers by offering brand specific deals or coupons. Including the brand name in the coupon code allows consumers to find the deal faster, especially true when working with coupon and deal websites. This works beyond just brand names. A well-designed coupon focusing on one particular product or service can generate a short-term boost in traffic to most retailers.