Even though the volume of money-off coupons and vouchers in circulation appears to have fallen, UK consumers still saved £3.4 billion in the 12 months to April 2017, a new survey conducted for coupon company Valassis reveals.
Almost all consumers said they use coupons when supermarket shopping (99%) and almost all (96%) say they are actively looking for promotional offers more often or as much as a year ago.
However, while the appetite for coupons and vouchers remains high, 41% of consumers report that they are receiving fewer than a year ago. The survey’s respondents reported decreases in coupon availability across most of the usual sources, with nearly two thirds (65%) claiming they now receive fewer coupons at till and 35% spotting fewer coupons online.
Charles D’Oyly, managing director of Valassis UK, comments: “Several grocery retailers have pulled back from using basket price comparisons against other supermarkets, which often resulted in the price difference being printed out as a voucher when checking out. This promotional mechanic has been popular since early 2010, but with the rise of the deep discounters and the need to compete on everyday low prices for household staples, it looks like retailers are not issuing as many of those types of coupons and vouchers.”
The hunger for coupons and vouchers remains high, especially among younger shoppers, with 49% of 16-24 year olds stating they had increased coupon use compared to 33% of all consumers.
Regarding new shopping habits, 20% of all shoppers claim to regularly use online shopping and home delivery, and it is particularly popular among the younger age group. Younger shoppers are also more likely to try other new shopping methods – 11% of shoppers aged 16-24 often use “Click and Collect” compared to 1% of shoppers over 65, while 15% of younger shoppers often use a handheld scanner when shopping compared to just 2% of all shoppers.
Over half of all those surveyed (54%) claimed to have used Amazon for grocery shopping, with 19% using it regularly.
However, some traditional shopping habits remain – most people still use a shopping list, with just 30% saying they never use one for their main grocery shop, suggesting that most shopping decisions are made before setting off to the supermarket. The research underlined this further, with 37% of respondents agreeing that offers will sway what they intend to purchase and what goes on the shopping list.
Loyalty to retailers is decreasing, with far fewer people using only one supermarket for their regular shop. Shoppers visiting just one store for their grocery shopping has dropped to just 8% from 12% in the previous year. Likewise, over two thirds of shoppers (67%) report that they use two to three stores on a monthly basis.
The research also suggested that the rise of discount supermarkets may be slowing down and that the discounters may even be falling out of favour – exactly a quarter of shoppers stated that the hassle and inconvenience of shopping in places like Aldi and Lidl were not worth their lower prices.
The findings are based on an online survey of 2,000 nationally representative adults, conducted by GfKNOP from April 3 to 10 2017 on behalf of Valassis.
Valassis Limited is the UK’s largest coupon and voucher services provider, performing crucial data management and financial clearing services for brands, retailers and others. Responsible for handling most of the UK’s coupons and vouchers, Valassis Limited is uniquely positioned to deliver insights on UK consumer promotions.
In North America, Valassis is a leader in intelligent media delivery, providing over 58,000 clients with innovative media solutions to influence consumers wherever they plan, shop, buy and share. By integrating online and offline data combined with powerful insights, Valassis precisely targets its clients’ most valuable shoppers. NCH Marketing Services, Inc. and Clipper Magazine are Valassis subsidiaries, while RedPlum is its consumer brand. Valassis is a wholly owned subsidiary of Harland Clarke Holdings.