Voucher sites and coupons enjoy surge in popularity, Kantar Media TGI reveals

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Web sites offering daily deals continue to gain in popularity, according to new research from Kantar Media TGI.

It found 68% of shoppers agree with the statement: I always look out for special offers. And, nearly half (48%) say they always use money off coupons and vouchers.

With over 1,300 mentions in the press over the last year and nearly two-thirds of online shoppers using them, so-called daily deals sites are clearly appealing to consumers’ desire for a bargain and making the gloomy economic climate work in their favour, said researchers

The latest online shopper Intelligence study from Kantar Media Compete shows 65% of online shoppers engage with daily deals sites either by visiting the site directly or reading an email newsletter. The main driver of this behaviour is a desire to lower the cost of a range of purchases, it said.

With more media coverage than any other group buying site, but a lower ad spend, Groupon is the most popular site with 80% market share and 8.1m monthly visitors, said Kantar.

Kantar Media Audiences InfoSys+ data shows advertising in the space kicked-off in June 2011, with ads seen over 15m times. The biggest spender is KGB Deals with its ad being seen over 7m times by individuals, followed by Wowcher (364,618), Living Social (312,140), Groupon (102,647) and 35,618 for Wahanda.com.

Groupon was followed in the shopper popularity stakes by LivingSocial.com and KGBDeals.co.uk (10% each). Newer offerings such as Wowcher are just beginning to make their mark with consumers, said Kantar. 

But only 37% of consumers who buy from these sites make a second purchase from the same supplier.

John Thekanady, UK client services director, Kantar Media Compete, said: “It’s clear group buying sites build awareness and encourage impulse purchase behaviour efficiently, but featured companies are failing to convert those shoppers into loyal customers – bringing into question the long term viability of these sites. With an expanding competitive set and talk of daily deals fatigue, group buying sites would be well advised to target their offerings to specific consumer segments to distinguish themselves and help advertisers reach a more engaged audience.”

Additional data from Kantar Media confirms daily deals are an important consumer trend, but these sites need to change their approach to ensure their long-term success:

  • In the last year, an analysis of print and online media coverage by Kantar Media Intelligence found the term group buying or one of the five main competitors was mentioned in the UK online and print media in 1,328 articles
  • Groupon takes the largest share of the media coverage at 79%, but it’s not all positive. The company is often criticised for misleading consumers and news of investigations by the OFT and ASA were widely covered
  • A significant proportion of the coverage told the story of how and why consumers have been drawn to group buying. The so-called voucher revolution is caused, the coverage analysis reveals, by the economic downturn
  • Kantar Media TGI data shows people are more keen about household promotions – 88% of people said they always look for promotions of these products

Retail Times’ readers can download the full online shopper Intelligence report here: www.kantarmedia.compete.com.