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Close to 90pc of coupon searches come from mobile for some: report

By
May 11, 2016

mobile-couponsAt the end of April, 59 percent of all online searches containing the word “coupon” originated on a smartphone or tablet, while leading bricks-and-mortar retailers saw significantly higher shares, according to a new report from Hitwise, a division of Connexity.

Jo-Ann, Michaels, Hobby Lobby and JCPenney all saw more than 80 percent of coupon searches on mobile. Overall, deal-oriented searches grew by 40 percent in the past year, with approximately one out of every 300 online searches seeking out coupons, sales, discounts or deals.

“While it wasn’t a surprise to see that a large and growing share of coupon searches online are originating on mobile devices, what was unexpected was the share of coupon searches that some of the top retailers are getting from smartphones and tablets,” said John Fetto, senior analyst research and marketing at Connexity.

“For instance, 92 percent of coupon searches mentioning Joann were conducted on a mobile device,” he said.

“That’s not just mobile dominant, that’s nearly mobile-exclusive.”

Mobile is a given
The fact that top brands see a higher share of coupon searches coming from mobile suggests that shoppers are looking for coupons while in their store or a competitor’s store.

Walgreens, Advance Auto Parts, Victoria’s Secret, Ulta Beauty and Harbor Freight see more than 70 percent of searches on mobile.

While a significant number of searches are coming from mobile devices, only one out of every 500 coupon-related searches uses the word “mobile” in the search.

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The findings suggest that consumers simply expect to find coupons on mobile and are not differentiating between types of coupons.

Coupon codes
In terms of the offer mechanism, searches for coupon codes surpass those for printable or mobile coupons by a rate of nearly five to one. By share, 14 percent of searches are for coupon codes, 2.9 percent for printable coupons and 0.2 percent for mobile coupons.

Kohl’s sees the highest percentage of searches for coupon codes at 2.46 percent, followed by Amazon at 1.27 percent.

For mobile coupon searches, Target leads with 8.13 percent, followed by Michael’s at 5.27 percent, Bed, Bath and Beyond at 4.88 percent and Hobby Lobby at 2.96 percent.

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For printable coupon searches, Kohl’s leads again, with 2.95 percent followed by Hobby Lobby at 2.53 percent.

Summer is the second biggest time of the year for deal-seeking, following the holiday season, with the peak weeks occurring in late July and early August, when back-to-school shopping begins in earnest.

“Coupon searches, excluding those for coupon codes, are moving overwhelmingly to mobile with those brands with the most robust coupon strategies – Hobby Lobby, Bed Bath & Beyond, etc. – leading the pack,” Mr. Fetto said. “This could create a financial risk for brands as more shoppers show up at the register with an often significant mobile coupon in their hand – as opposed to those who in the past may have forgotten their coupon at home and went ahead and paid full price.

“At the same time, it provides brands with ways to simultaneously upsell or promote additional items at the same time that they’re delivering that mobile coupon,” he said. “With the strong possibility that a mobile coupon search is being searched out while a consumer is already physically in store, there’s opportunity to drive additional transactions within a very short window of time.”

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