Killer Coupons (Literally)

written by Clare Ryan on March 23, 2011 in Startup News with one Comment
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Image from: DonkeeHouse

Before my brother goes shopping for anything, he goes to look for a coupon. He frequently uses a site called, “RetailMeNot,” that allows him to search for coupons for specific products or brands, but he will also just try a google search. Surprisingly, he finds coupons for almost EVERYTHING. There’s 25% off here, $10 off there… the offerings are endless. He basically, refuses to pay full price for anything.

On one hand, this is smart shopping, but the question must be asked, is this coupon craze ruining retail?

Writer Jay Goltz writes, “Recently, a 30-year-old woman came into my custom framing business with a designer purse and a question, ‘What kind of coupons do you have out there?’”

Shop owners are being asked to offer their products at significant discounts because, as the Groupon craze grows, paying full price starts to just sound dumb. Unfortunately, retailers are not often making huge margins, and offering coupons is not a sustainable option for the majority of business owners.

These deals are a threat to price integrity and retailers are facing the challenge of having to prove their value to keep customer satisfaction high. Even if the retailers offer discounts and gain a new customer base, it is likely this base will leave and go elsewhere when the next big offering pops up online.

So, here’s the question, is this coupon craze here to stay? There is certainly value in saving money for consumers, but for retailers? How will they survive this?

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