For the past few years, the number of people using vouchers discounts and more to reduce the cost of their shopping has been steadily increasing. Christmas in 2012 saw an impressive 40% increase in the number of people using voucher codes to make savings, and public participation in coupon schemes and online codes does not seem to have diminished since then.
Voucher codes for online sites are relatively easy to find. An enormous range of websites have been created which collate the best offers and give customers the power to search for codes relevant to the places they shop the most. Limiting searches to clothes stores or supermarkets helps to narrow the field a little and to inform the decision making process: a customer might have two favorite retailers who are equally matched, but if one has a 20% off discount available then in the vast majority of cases, they would choose to shop there over the alternative.
The process is simple. Once a code has been found, whether through using a search engine, a specialist discount code website or through promotional newsletters, it simply has to be inserted into the relevant space on the ‘checkout’ form. The discount is then applied before the form is submitted and the order confirmed, allowing the customer to check the overall total and make sure they are happy with the price in front of them. Some companies allow for multiple discount codes to be used at the same time, to ‘stack’ deals, whilst most only accept one code per transaction.
The other method of using online discounts is in purchasing the vouchers which can be redeemed against activities like spa treatments, car valeting, restaurant meals or outdoor pursuits. The websites with these kinds of offers work in partnership with their suppliers, offering a reduced price if enough people claim the deal. For example, a voucher site of this kind might be able to sell customers an electronic voucher for a hairdresser’s appointment at a particular chain of stylists for £20, where the same treatment would cost £60 to a customer walking off the street – as long as 100 people sign up for that offer. The voucher is presented when the appointment is made, and all parties are happy with the process.
Even large supermarket chains are now offering promotional vouchers and codes, both for in-store grocery shopping as well as for use on their website for additional products. There are also an increasing number of online competitions available for you to win £1,500 to ££3,000 worth of vouches for selected super stores. Where once people might have been embarrassed to be seen using coupons, today they are everywhere – and a great way to save money.