Visions of Sugar Plums & Online Coupons

Visions of sugar plums are not dancing in my head. The visions dancing in my head are that of an incomplete shopping list. The spirit of giving has turned into the spirit of “what in the heck do I get so-and-so… they already have everything!”

In situations like these, the internet is my best friend. Although cyber Monday has come and gone, online retailers are still offering shoppers like me a chance to find perfect gifts without the hassle of fighting crowds of other restless shoppers.

With three weeks until Christmas Day, I still have ample time to order and receive the gifts I need, but what other benefits are companies offering to urge shoppers to choose their brand in this especially rough economic time?

I read an article this morning in the New York Times about the rise of online coupons (this is not the first I’ve read about this, it’s a pretty prevalent topic). Companies from Lucky Grand Jeans to Proctor & Gamble to Caribou Coffee are offering clickable (rather than clipable) coupons for shoppers looking for a deal.

The goal of these coupons is to encourage customers to purchase products, but also keep them coming back for more. Brand loyalty is a very important mission of coupons and with the state of our economy, consumers are becoming much more selective about where they spend their hard earned money.

By offering customers loyalty coupons and discount cards, repeat interaction (aka purchases) become more likely given the incentive for future discounts.

So, a tip for shoppers—check out the possibilities of online coupons. You may be surprised and save a buck or two. You may also get a wink of sleep at night.

And, a tip for retailers—look into setting up some online coupons, loyalty programs, etc. It’s a relatively simple way to tell your customers you care about their needs (and wants) and can certainly help relieve some of their shopping stress.

Also, with a little promotion, you’re special offers can be in front of targeted consumers quickly and painlessly.