The growth in consumer coupon redemptions is continuing strongly, according to the latest industry data released by coupon and voucher services provider Valassis, covering the first half of 2012. This article is copyright 2012 The Best Customer Guide.

The company's data shows that coupon redemptions were up 14% in the first half of 2012, with nearly 225 million coupons being redeemed (compared to 195 million in the second half of 2011).

When redemptions in the first half of 2012 are compared to the first half of 2009, they grew from 115 million to 225 million, representing a 96% growth in only three years, and meaning that coupon redemptions had almost doubled during that time.

The company's analysis of the latest coupon redemption data also showed that:

  • The trend of significant growth in coupon redemptions (44% growth from 2009 to 2011) is continuing.
  • The growth has mainly come from retailer issued coupons and vouchers, which grew by 84% compared to the first half of 2011 and 58% growth year-on-year;
  • Retailer coupons grew by 78 million redemptions to over 170 million coupons;
  • Retailers now account for over three quarters of coupons redeemed (while in 2011 it was two thirds of coupons redeemed);
  • Redemptions of manufacturer issued coupons have recently shown modest growth (7%) after many years of slow decline. However, in recent years manufacturers have significantly moved away from issuing their own coupons to working with retailers and using retailer loyalty programmes as the distribution channel.

"The ongoing growth of coupon usage and redemption is one of the more remarkable trends in FMCG marketing in recent years," said Charles D'Oyly, managing director for Valassis. "Coupons have been at the heart of so many marketing communications and campaigns, driving consumer behaviour and spending when shoppers might otherwise have held back. Redeeming coupons is now habitual across all demographics."