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The Green Sheet Online Edition

July 11, 2016 • Issue 16:07:01

Mobile coupon tidal wave

Since launching five years ago, Koupon Media has delivered more than 500 million mobile coupon offers to consumers for some of America's leading brands and retailers. According to the company, these geo-targeted offers have driven 20 million store visits leading to $100 million in additional gross margins for its clients, and its mobile offers network currently represents over 30,000 in-network retail locations nationwide.

Several factors are contributing to this trend. "Consumers are using their smartphones more while they're shopping, and mobile coupon usage is growing as a result," said Bill Ogle, Chief Executive Officer of Koupon. "In 2015, we doubled the number of coupons delivered on our platform. The fact is mobile coupons are easier to use than paper or print-at-home coupons, and more retailers accept them than ever before."

Ogle expects mobile coupons will soon outpace paper coupons. To assess this moving trend, Koupon conducted research and released its findings in a report titled 2016 State of the Mobile Coupon Industry. The report confirms an earlier EMarketer analysis revealing that in 2015 the number of U.S. consumers using mobile coupons reached 92.6 million, up 18 percent from the previous year.

Koupon identified the following indicators that further growth in mobile coupon usage could be around the corner:

  • 60 percent of customers said they would adopt mobile payments if offered coupons.
  • 42 percent of mobile phone users have used mobile coupons.
  • 39 percent of customers spend more when they receive personalized coupons.

The redemption data in the report focused on convenience stores, a vertical market that has shown steady growth, according to Koupon. Researchers found that beverages topped the list of redemption categories for mobile coupons.

"Depending on the category, we are seeing redemption rates at over 10 times the average of a paper coupon," said Charlie Lang, Vice President of Product and Research for Koupon. "Mobile coupon redemption is driving double-digit sales growth for brands and retailers during campaign versus pre-campaign sales. This clear demonstration of ROI is why some of the world's largest brands and retailers use our platform for mobile campaigns."

Walgreens steps up paperless coupons

Not missing a beat, Walgreen Co. stepped up its mobile coupon program by extending paperless coupons redemption from Walgreens and manufacturers across online and in-store channels. According to the company, offers can now be "clipped" from product detail pages and in search results on both Walgreens.com and the Walgreens mobile app.

"In the last few years, we’ve seen a growing demand from our customers to provide value and a seamless shopping experience whether they visit us in-store, online or through the Walgreens mobile app," said Linda Filler, Walgreens President of Retail Products and Chief Merchandising Officer. "Paperless coupons give Walgreens and our vendor partners an opportunity to deliver even greater value to our customers no matter which of our channels they choose to shop."

Walgreens stated that its paperless coupon program will now make electronic coupons available to the more than 85 million active members of its Balance Rewards program for members who opt in online or via the mobile app. The clipped offers members select will automatically be saved to the customer's Balance Rewards card, which can then be applied in-store during checkout, the company noted.

"We were one of the first retailers to take an innovative and simplified approach in developing the customer experience for digital coupons," said Abhi Dhar, Walgreens Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer. "These latest enhancements, in addition to integrating our loyalty program with Apple Pay and Android Pay, have made it even easier for the millions of people who use our online and mobile channels every day to save even more at Walgreens."

Walgreens revealed that since it first launched paperless coupons in 2015, the drugstore chain has seen continual increases in monthly redemptions, with more than 135 million total coupons clipped through the program to date.

The company has since added manufacturer coupons through a partnership with Quotient Technology Inc. (formerly Coupons.com Inc.) and plans to begin offering digital redemption and clipping from product pages for its Weekly Ad and Monthly Savings Book in the near future. end of article

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