Consumers prefer paper coupons


Study shows that consumers are still crazy about clipping paper coupons.

If you like paper coupons, you’re not alone: according to a new study, there’s big business in those little clippings. In a recent article, Chicago Tribune contact reporter Gregory Karp writes that about 90 percent of the 319 billion coupons distributed in 2014 were paper coupons; altogether, about 2.84 billion paper and digital coupons were redeemed in the U.S. last year.

According to a survey conducted by, “clipping paper coupons is the method most often used by 63 percent of consumers, while promotional codes for online or mobile purchases are the primary method far less often, just 17 percent and 15 percent, respectively,” Karp writes.

Even young people are getting in on the money-saving fun; according to the survey, 18- to 24-year-olds are using paper coupons about twice as much as any other method.

Karp suggests that paper provides an important emotional connection. “One reason for the continued use of paper coupons by retailers and manufacturers is subtle, but a major point of using coupons at all. It's the emotional connection and feeling of loyalty clipping a paper coupon evokes in a consumer vs. an automatic digital process — loading a coupon onto a card or smartphone — in which the shopper is barely aware he got a price break,” he writes.

Also reported by CBS News:

Source: Chicago Tribune, November 3, 2015