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Inmar releases key coupon trends for 2014

Inmar, a company that operates intelligent commerce networks, announced that according to its proprietary data and trends analysis 2.84 billion coupons were redeemed in 2014. These coupons included offers for both food and non-food items and were distributed digitally as well as through traditional paper methods.

Among major methods of distribution, Free-Standing Inserts (FSIs) garnered the largest share of redemption -- 39.4 percent. At the same time, digital paperless Load-to-Card (L2C) coupons experienced the greatest growth in redemption with their share of overall redemption doubling to 1.8 percent.

Growth in redemption for digitally discovered coupons has been accelerating significantly for the last several years as shoppers continue to reward those retailers that have made the availability of L2C offers a central feature of their shopper loyalty programs. The convenience these offers provide shoppers and the flexibility they afford both retailers and manufacturers is enhancing their position in the marketing mix. 

“The one hundred percent, year-over-year, growth we’re continuing to see in redemption for load-to-card coupons is affirmation of their rapidly expanding popularity among consumers and the tremendous utility they provide marketers,” says Inmar Chairman and CEO David Mounts. “The ability marketers now have to personalize these offers, deliver them adjacent to equity-building content and target them to individual shoppers – at scale – makes them particularly effective in building share for brands and maintaining loyalty for retailers,” adds Mounts.

With L2C offers enjoying their fifth consecutive year of growth in redemption, FSIs still accounted for the majority (89.6%) of the 319 billion coupons distributed in 2014. Overall, distribution declined slightly (-2.9%) compared to 2013. But, as distribution saw a marked increase in 2013, the 319 billion coupons distributed in 2014 was greater than in both 2012 (313 billion) and 2011 (312 billion). Overall redemption was also down slightly (-3.0%) for 2014 versus 2013.

Other major methods capturing a significant share of  redemption volume in 2014 included 1) Instant Redeemable and Instant Redeemable Cross-Ruff which, together, accounted for 21.6 percent of all coupons redeemed; 2) Electronic Checkout with 7.3 percent; 3) Shelf Pad representing 5.4 percent of all coupons redeemed and 4) Print-at-Home (PAH) accounting for 3.5 percent.

While 2014 coupon distribution strategies stayed consistent with recent past practice, marketers are continuing to experiment with offer attributes as they seek to find the best “formula” for motivating acquisition and driving redemption. Average face values for distributed food and non-food offers were up to $1.15 (an increase of 11.6 percent) and $2.04 (an increase of 6.2 percent), respectively. However, marketers gave consumers less time to take advantage of these higher face values with the average redemption period for all offers continuing its contraction to 2.0 months, a decrease of 7.2 percent compared to 2013.

As a service to its clients, and the industry, Inmar will host a webinar, “2014 Coupon Trends, Insights and Analysis,” at 2:00p.m. Eastern Time, Thursday, February 5 and again on Tuesday, February 10 at 2:00p.m. Eastern Time. This webinar will present data from the 2015 Inmar Coupon Trends Report and Inmar shopper behavior research -- examining critical topline coupon industry activity and coupon-related shopper behavior. In addition, the program will offer insights as to what is driving promotional decision-making, the influence of current strategies on shoppers and future implications for brands, retailers and shoppers. The webinar is open to all interested parties, and there is no cost to attend. The webinar registration link is

Inmar has been in the promotion industry for more than 34 years and currently processes and analyzes more than 2.3 billion coupons and related campaigns annually, making it an expert in planning, executing and measuring promotions. In addition to providing promotion management, coupon processing, business intelligence and analytics, Inmar closely monitors coupon distribution and redemption across the country and regularly reports on trends and activity in this sector.