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More Customers Use Printed Coupons

Categories: Industry Insights
Printed Coupons

Apple introduced the iPhone in 2007, which launched a revolution in mobile marketing and shopping. But even after nearly a decade of transformations and advancements, one thing hasn’t changed: printed coupons.

Online coupons can be successful, and emails are an inexpensive way to distribute information, build awareness of your company and drive traffic to your website. But several studies show that consumers prefer paper. Businesses that want to reach more customers should use printed coupons or direct mail.


  • More than 85 percent of customers have used traditional printed coupons, while less than half have used online coupon codes, and less than 20 percent have used mobile coupons from shopping apps. That’s according to a 2014 survey from Ask Your Target Market, a leading market research company.
  • While a growing number of shoppers are using coupons from digital, social and mobile media, value-seeking consumers still prefer traditional media. The top two sources of where they prefer to receive their coupons were newspapers (52 percent) and mail (51 percent), according to a 2014 Shopper Marketing Report from Valassis, a leader in intelligent media delivery.
  • Campaigns that included mail achieved more than twice the market share growth compared to efforts that did not include mail, according to a 2014 report from Royal Mail MarketReach, a leading delivery company in the United Kingdom and Europe. Those campaigns with mail were also far more likely to deliver high sales performance and high acquisition levels.
  • The Royal Mail report also found that, compared to email, mail was more than twice as likely to make customers feel more valued, to get them to spend a lot of time reading the information and to leave them with a better impression. Those favorable numbers about mail have actually jumped over time, even as the number of digital messages consumers receive has become more overwhelming.

The lesson: As your business looks to grow customers and build loyalty among existing clientele, don’t forget about the power of paper. But keep your eye on digital as well, as it can complement traditional marketing methods.