Cash back sales promotions are consumers' top alternative to price cuts, with one in four consumers (25%) saying a cash back offer was more likely to encourage them to buy a product than any other deal, according to a OnePoll survey of 2,000 consumers commissioned by Opia. This article is copyright 2015 The Best Customer Guide.

This was just 12% fewer than the 37% most influenced by discounts. Over half (51%) of those polled also confirmed they had taken part in a cash back promotion, the majority of whom (78%) were happy with the outcome.

"These results suggest that retailers don't need to cut their prices at the point of purchase, which ultimately erodes their margins," explained Steve Gales, sales director for the risk-managed sales promotion firm Opia. "Using the right promotional mechanisms, brands and retailers can roll out cash back offers to influence shoppers and give them a good deal for less than half the cost of a straightforward discount."

The survey revealed that, when hunting for a deal, many shoppers will head straight to a retailer's website (59%) - many more than the 28% who look out for them in-store.

Having taken part in a sales promotion, many consumers are also happy to share post-sale insight and feedback: 64% will give their name and contact information; 44% will opt-in for future news and promotions and 39% will share their likes and dislikes.

Despite not getting a discount at the point of sale, 83% of customers said they would be willing to wait up to a month or longer to claim money back from a cash back offer. Some 77% said it was preferable to receive it electronically direct to their account or via PayPal - typically the fastest and most cost-effective way to manage redemptions. Most consumers polled who were unhappy with cash back deals (21%) said it was because the money wasn't received fast enough (27%).