Mobile platform to fuel demand for digital coupons in India

Kulpreet Kaur, Co-founder, Shoppirate
Monday, December 28, 2015
Kulpreet Kaur, Co-founder, Shoppirate
The demand for Digital coupons is increasing slowly but gradually in the Indian market. Thanks to the savings it offers to the consumers, more & more businesses are now distributing their coupons digitally. As per a strategic white paper on digital coupon market released by Pepperwood Partners, Indian coupon market recorded an impressive growth of 629 percent in 2011 with digital coupons being the catalyst of this growth. We believe that a number of companies in India are still depending on advertising in print medium and are yet to realize the importance of coupons as a tool to increase their sales. This offers companies like ours that are operating in digital coupons space a huge opportunity as print circulation has gone down globally, including in India. The future will definitely see disruption in media businesses with digital solutions emerging as the most preferred option.

Interestingly, we as a company are seeing a strong growth in mobile traffic and tractions on our website, a trend that is going to result in taking the demand and popularity of digital coupons to the next level. As per a market survey conducted by shoppirate.com in August 2015 (100 participants in New Delhi & Mumbai, all in the age group of25-40 years and a minimum annual income of six lakhs), about 60 percent of the respondents had never used a coupon to purchase a product, but surprisingly a strong 42 percent of the remaining respondents had redeemed a coupon digitally. About half of them used mobile platform to purchase a product availing a coupon. This clearly indicates that digital coupon market is growing strongly and consumers are shifting to mobiles for redemption of digital coupons.

The digital coupon market in India is bound to head the U.S. market way, where according to eMarketer, 92.5 million people redeemed a digital coupon in 2012 and the number of mobile coupon users rose from 12.3 million in 2010 to 53.2 million in 2014.

According to 'India on the go - Mobile Internet Vision Report 2015' by IAMAI and KPMG, there were approximately 82 million 3G subscribers in India by the end of 2014. Considering that smart phones are reaching to the masses with manufacturers like Micromax, Lenovo and Lava offering smart phones at very competitive prices, buying on mobile platform has picked up tremendously. In fact this segment will emerge as the strongest medium to push the demand for digital coupons in the country. India will overtake the U.S. as the second largest market for smartphones in the world by 2016 as smart mobile devices become affordable, global research firm eMarketer has expressed. A good example to reflect the demand for shopping on the digital platforms is the recent festive season sales of e-commerce companies like Flipkart and Amazon. Both the companies recorded six-digit sales figures within hours after the launch. Flipkart reported to have sold one million products with 6 million customer visits in the first 10 hours of opening the sale. The fact is that mobile apps of all these e-Commerce companies are hugely popular are likely to contribute significantly to these numbers.

What makes us optimistic about the growth of digital coupons and mobiles emerging as the catalyst of its growth is the smartphones that let the users access the deals on the go and can offer coupons that are relevant to a consumer depending on their location, behavior and timeliness. Mobiles also offer players like Shoppirate.in, HappyCheckout.com, Couponsdunia.com, and many others an opportunity to use these devices to deliver digital coupons in various ways like SMS promotions, mobile apps and mobile barcodes.
Digital coupons also offer an opportunity to companies that have no or little online presence an opportunity to compete with the growing e-Commerce entities by using platform like ours to increase sales.

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