Study Shows Lottery Win Would Not Stop Coupon Use

Annual RedPlum® Purse String Study Reveals Insights from More than 23,300 Shoppers

Aug 29, 2011, 10:00 ET from RedPlum

LIVONIA, Mich., Aug. 29, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Redplum®.com, one of the fastest growing value lifestyle sites and a leading provider of coupons, deals and savings on brands consumers want most, announced today results of its Fourth Annual RedPlum Purse String Study that reveals most shoppers would continue to use coupons even if they won the lottery. It's not just about the money; it's a way of life. Overwhelmingly, 96% of the more than 23,300 respondents said that they would still use coupons if they struck it big in the lottery. This reflects the value-oriented mindset that took root at the onset of the recession. This learned behavior was shared by shoppers whether their annual income was $20,000 or over $150,000.

According to the RedPlum Purse String Study, consumers across the board are:

  • enlisting more ways to save – although not necessarily putting more time against these tactics – they are savvy and it has become second nature;
  • overwhelmingly allocating their coupon savings to basic necessities like food and gas, which speaks to the impact the challenging economy continues to have on them; and
  • more digitally connected where there were notable increases in those who are downloading coupons to their mobile phones and spending more time seeking deals online.

"Today's savers are relying on behaviors learned during recessionary times that have become a part of their everyday life," said Lisa Reynolds, RedPlum's Mom Saver-in-chief.  "Our survey shows consumers are trying to save more through coupons, deals and special offers, despite their confidence level remaining basically unchanged from last year. Rising food and gas prices combined are driving their increased savings strategies and basic necessities are where they are allocating their savings, even more than last year. It is clear in a number of areas, that if anything, savings behavior has grown since 2010."

Parents of Teens Lead by Example and Raise a New Generation of Savers

The Purse String Study found that 56% of 13- to 17-year-olds use coupons or coupon codes, according to the parents of these teens – savers themselves. The teens, however, are using coupons and coupon codes for items most important to them:

  • 25%  clothing;
  • 19%  entertainment; and
  • 18%  beauty care/grooming.

In focus groups, savers have expressed a sense of pride and joy and desire to share their savings. When asked if they have ever hidden a purchase from their significant other, 74% of RedPlum Purse String Study respondents said "no," further supporting pride in their great finds. This same pride is rubbing off on their children.

It's not Print vs. Digital – It's About Saving any way you Can

When it comes to saving, todays consumers are not loyal strictly to print or digital – they embrace both. While 60% spend up to two hours looking for coupons, deals and savings from print sources, 31% spend three or more hours each week online looking for deals. This online statistic reflects a 265% increase from 2010.  Mobile is moving forward quickly especially with those under 50.

Consumers are seeking value from multiple sources and are more engaged in digital offers, although this new media still represents a small percentage of all offers in the marketplace. While 22% have downloaded a coupon to a mobile device, this is a 107% increase from 2010 findings. Those most likely to use a mobile device for couponing are 18-44 with children at home with a household income of $75,000 or more.

Despite the Growth in Mobile, Print Still Reigns Supreme for Value Seekers

Shoppers are engaging in new ways to save, but also are relying on tried and true savings in the form of print coupons. The Purse String Study reveals that:

  • 76% indicated that newspapers are their primary source for coupons and deals;
  • 59% from e-mails and coupon alerts, an astounding 29% increase from 2010; and
  • 33% from Internet searches.

Practicality wins out Over Splurging With Coupon Savings

For the second consecutive year, a majority of shoppers (77%) have said they are using their savings for basic necessities, reflecting a 20% increase from the prior year. Additionally, 35% said they will use their savings to pay down debt, which is in line with BIGResearch®'s most recent Consumer Intentions & Actions® Survey. In that survey, nearly one-third said they are planning to pay down debt in the next three months.

Today people are redirecting their savings toward fundamental household items and services. More of them are putting their coupon savings toward paying down debt; long-term savings; and an emergency fund, according the findings of the Purse String Study.  Only 7% said they will use the money saved from couponing to splurge. Similar categories such as vacations, dining out and entertainment experienced decreases compared to last year's Purse String findings as areas of desired spend.

Seventy-seven percent said they save $11 or more each week, compared to 67% in 2010.  Additionally, there has been a 74% increase in the number who save more than $50 each week – 23%.

Rising Food and Gas Prices Incite More Savings Strategies as Shoppers Look for Ways to Offset Theses Costs

Three in four say the price of gas is still impacting their budgets, according to BIGResearch, which puts even more importance on increased ways to save. As evidenced by findings of the Purse String Study, rising food and gas prices have affected spending behaviors and led shoppers to enlist more ways to save:

  • 81% are using more coupons;
  • 73% are planning more prior to shopping; and
  • 69% are combining shopping trips.

"There is a strong focus on maximizing dollars," Reynolds said. "These tactics are effective for grocery shopping but by no means are limited to the grocery store. As we gear up for the biggest shopping time of the year, I would expect these shopping strategies will carry over to the holiday season."  BIGResearch has also reported that all consumers plan to be frugal in the holiday season this year.

According to the Purse String Study, grocery continues to be the No. 1 category for savings with 92% indicating they are using coupons for those every day needs. Additionally, 45% are using coupons for dining out; 38% for clothing; and 35% for cosmetics and beauty products.

More people are indeed saving more this year, as the survey results indicate. In the first half of 2011, Americans saved $2 billion, according to the U.S. Mid-year 2011 Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) Coupon Facts Report, released in July by NCH Marketing Services, Inc., a Valassis subsidiary.

About the Study – 23,300 Respondents Reflects Highest in Four Years

For the fourth year, in conjunction with National Coupon Month in September, RedPlum has conducted a savings survey to gain insight from today's shopper; learn more about their shopping behaviors; where consumers are looking for deals; what lengths they will go to seek deals; what they are doing with their savings; and what influencers are driving this new frugality. The 2011 RedPlum Purse String Study is based on insights from more than 23,300 respondents, the largest number of participants in the survey's history. The survey was conducted on from June 15 through July 13. For more on National Coupon Month, go to:

About RedPlum®

RedPlum brings consumers relevant offers and good deals on the brands they want most to best stretch their budgets. We deliver deals on a weekly basis to over 100 million shoppers in the mailbox, in the newspaper, in-store and online. At and, you will find one of the largest collections of printable coupons, coupon codes and savings tips along with the best deals and the sweetest coupons plus trends, tips and inside information on what to wear, buy and do right now. RedPlum is the consumer brand of Valassis, a Michigan-based company that has been delivering savings and value for 40 years. Building upon our wish to help American families, we empower the public to take part in the effort to help safely recover missing children through our America's Looking For Its Missing Children® program, which appears on our RedPlum products. For more information, visit and To learn about advertising opportunities with RedPlum, please call 1-800-437-0479.