The growing consumer appetite for redeeming money-off coupons has increased dramatically with 90% of UK consumers now stating that they use coupons, representing an average shopper saving of 5.70 per month, or a national total of 2.3 billion each year, according to a survey by coupon provider Valassis.
The study also found that the higher the social class, the more likely consumers are to save money using coupons. One third (33%) of the country's ABs demographic save at least 5 a month, while only 25% of DEs do so.
The reasons behind the high use of coupons are mainly money motivated. The rising cost of living (24%) and higher food costs (20%) are cited as the main reasons for seeking out promotional offers, according to the survey of more than 1000 UK adults.
One area that has not grown significantly is the use of electronic coupons. Despite the general trend toward the increasing use of internet and mobile communications, only eight percent of shoppers are using internet coupons more than they were last year and only nine percent are using mobile coupons more.
"While consumers are still finding the financial climate tough, nearly all of them are doing their best to fight back by making the most of coupons and the savings they can bring," said Charles D'Oyly, managing director for Valassis. "Consumers are becoming more and more money off motivated with tracking down coupons becoming increasingly incorporated into everyday shopping behaviour, with many planning their shopping destinations according to where the best discounts are available."
It appears that shop-switching is widespread with 94% of shoppers claiming they would change from their regular supermarket in favour of another if better discounts were offered.
"What's particularly interesting, however, is that the use of coupons and vouchers from mobile phones or the internet does not seem to be growing as rapidly as expected and paper still leads the way," concluded D'Oyly.