Don’t think your grandma is old-fashioned for clipping coupons. Lots of people still do.
While print coupons are still king, 24 percent of millennials want mobile coupons, like QR codes and mobile wallets, says Vantiv, a payment processing platform.
Tony Rose, director of mobile product management at Vantiv, says mobile is used in so many different ways for payments, so it’s natural for consumers to want to use their phone to save money, too.
“With mobile payments adoption on the rise, merchants are searching for new ways to keep customers coming back,” he says. “One way merchants can increase brand loyalty is with offers such as mobile coupons and loyalty programs, but most merchants don’t know how to use these programs because they don’t know their customers’ preferences.”
It turns out that 43 percent of millennials and Gen Xers share promotions through email and social channels, like Facebook, compared to only 12 percent of baby boomers.
While couponing is traditionally something we did by picking up a newspaper and finding ad books, it’s slowly moving digital, as many Americans are looking for alternatives to carrying paper including loyalty programs with digital coupons.
Rose says there are ways that merchants and stores can catch up with the demand of customers while still making money.
“We believe merchants would best be served to invest in new technology such as putting smart targeted offers and coupons into mobile wallets where they are organized and transmitted automatically, offering not only environmental benefit but a much more convenient consumer experience,” he says.
In the first half of 2016, mobile couponing went up more than 23 percent, according to Progressive Grocer. Total, mobile coupon users have gone up 18 percent since this time last year.
How to get mobile coupons
Right now, at many retailers, grocery stores and gas stations across the country, you can get mobile coupons.
Many places offer loyalty programs through mobile apps on both Android and iPhone devices, and once signed up, you can “clip” your coupons at your leisure.
Safeway — At Safeway, you can find mobile-only coupons that aren’t available through the regular weekly deals in the circular. Aside from the regular app, Safeway offers deals through their delivery app, where you can get a free delivery on your first order and get your groceries within an hour.
Publix — They have an app where you can clip coupons from, or you can do it through their website. You can get ad details straight from your phone, so you know all the offers, including coupons and buy-one-get-one free deals.
Walgreens — Get the loyalty card, where you get 10 points for every dollar spent. Some products offer double points, too, and when you hit 5,000 points, you can trade them in for $5 off your next order.
CVS — Just like Walgreens, CVS offers a loyalty card, giving you access to deals that others won’t get if they don’t have it.
Kroger — Safeway and Publix competitor Kroger is the nation’s second-biggest retailer in the U.S. Get the Kroger Plus card and get big savings on Fridays, when they offer a digital coupon for a free product.