Step Aside, Mobile: Banks and Retailers Should Hold Onto Traditional Coupon Strategies

Consumers are using their smartphones for all things retail these days. Well, not all things. When it comes to collecting coupons, many are still relying on more traditional methods like newspapers instead of turning to their mobile devices. In a recent podcast interview with PYMNTS, TSYS Director of Corporate Strategy and Planning, Joe Majestic, gave us insight on today’s surprisingly high number of coupon users, the influence (or lack thereof) of mobile coupons, and what banks and retailers must to do to keep their customers coming back for more.


In a payments space that’s practically gone completely digital where the paper version of anything comes second, there still happens to be some surprising statistics about who continues to opt for the “old school” ways.  TSYS’s Consumer Payment Choice Study, conducted with an online consumer survey and in-person focus groups, confirms that consumers are still heavily using coupons. In fact, 83 percent of respondents said they use coupons, which, said Joe Majestic, Director of Corporate Strategy and Planning at TSYS, proved to be rather surprising.

Consumers surveyed for the “Consumers, Coupons, and Daily Deals” report had various incomes, yet in nearly all income ranges, at least one third were using coupons 50 or more times a year, said Majestic.

“We didn't see as much variability between different income segments as we thought we would,” he said. “In fact, the highest percentage of heavy users was in the 150 thousand plus income bracket.”  In terms of payment types, he added that coupon users tended to choose debit.

According to the report, the high percentage of coupon use did not link to growing smartphone use – only one in five of those surveyed said that they were getting coupons via a mobile app. The top-ranked source, said Majestic, was newspapers, followed by online, and then store circulars. However, this does not mean that mobile has “left people cold” when it comes to the coupon – rather, it’s “just a function of changing behavior and will grow over time,” said Majestic.

About half the respondents also indicated that they were open to receiving coupon offers from their bank, but only 12 percent said they remembered actually receiving an offer. Given most consumers get their coupons from traditional sources, banks must aim to increase consumer education around these deals, said Majestic, sparking more of a change in behavior.

With the large amount of traditional coupon users that exist today, the key takeaway for retailers and banks is to understand and focus on the best (yet not always new) methods to reach their customers, keeping them coming back for more.


To listen to the full PYMNTS podcast, CLICK HERE


For more on this study download the "Consumers, Coupons, and Daily Deals" white-paper by clicking the button below.






The September 2020 Leveraging The Digital Banking Shift Study, PYMNTS examines consumers’ growing use of online and mobile tools to open and manage accounts as well as the factors that are paramount in building and maintaining trust in the current economic environment. The report is based on a survey of nearly 2,200 account-holding U.S. consumers.