How Couponing has Changed the Online Shopping Industry

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Over the last decade, technology has drastically changed the way consumers purchase products. For centuries, markets and shops have been the only places products were sold. People would travel to a store or a mall and choose a product from the limited set of items available in that particular store.

With the invention and widespread use of the internet, people, for the first time, had access to all these centers of commerce from the comfort of their house. They could visit multiple websites in a matter of minutes and choose the best products at the best prices in much shorter periods.

Online shopping gained popularity very quickly. This is so clearly reflected in the fact that the richest man in the world, Jeff Bezos, is the owner of the world’s biggest online shopping center, Amazon.

A Trend In Rising Demand: Couponing

Online shopping is highly competitive when it comes to prices. It is almost impossible for the average buyer to compare the prices of products in all physical stores. But the consumer can very easily, at the click of a few buttons, compare the prices of products across websites. To increase sales, sellers in the online shopping industry try to lower their prices and keep up with the competition.

Coupons were introduced in the online shopping industry to facilitate this very purpose. People prefer to buy cheaper products, and therefore every discount makes people feel better about their purchase. Coupons have become so popular today that most online shops have a field for entering coupon codes during checkout.

According to research data from CouponBirds, a digital coupon website, more consumers are shifting to digital coupons, paper coupons are disappearing. In 2020, more than 145 million American adults use digital coupons; In 2024, 145.3 million consumers used it. 90% of consumers used coupons in 2020 and saved about $3.6 billion. Electronic coupons have become a necessity for online shoppers.

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How couponing has changed the online shopping industry

Couponing quickly spread across the industry as it immediately received a positive response from the buyers. Most online shopping centers integrated coupons into their business, leading to a lot of change in the industry itself. Here are some examples

Skyrocketed conversion rates:

Advertisements, promotions, and other strategies can be used to promote a business and increase reach significantly. But increasing the conversion rate is a difficult task.

However, coupons and discount codes have emerged successful in pushing prospective customers into actually purchasing a product. As a result, conversion rates have drastically increased since people get instantly attracted to such products with heavy discounts.

Enhanced UI/UX of shopping sites:

As couponing got more competitive, online stores began to design simpler coupon portals with better UI/UX to get an edge in the competition. This eventually translated into better UX across shopping sites that were both easy to use and elegant to look at.

Buyers now have a smoother experience during online shopping, and payment gateways are designed with more complex programs to accommodate coupons and discount features.

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Better responsiveness of shopping sites:

Coupons are arguably the most effective way to promote a product and even work as advertisements. So to facilitate better traffic and keep customers glued, online shopping sites are leaving no stone unturned to give customers a seamless shopping experience.

Customers can be introduced to coupons on a plethora of devices. Shopping sites, to capitalize on this newfound reach, have made their sites compatible with multiple devices. Online shopping was initially limited to desktop and laptop computers. However, in 2019, 67.2% of the total revenue generated from online shopping came from mobile phones. In 2024, this percentage increased to 70.4%.

This can perhaps be attributed to the introduction of mobile phone apps that function smoother and faster than mobile web browsers. Shopping sites are extremely sensitive to these trends and references among the buyers because they consider the extra traffic generated by coupons to be very valuable.

More focus on customer loyalty:

Since the advent of couponing, there have been shifts in consumer behavior. One survey showed that 86% of people who went shopping made a purchase based on discount rates.

Customer loyalty is very important for brand building, and this has been shaken by couponing.

At present, online shopping centers invest heavily to increase customer loyalty, and therefore many loyalty programs, better customer support have been introduced. To protect customer loyalty, online shopping centers have even begun to relax return and exchange policies, provide free home delivery, and many more similar policies that make online shopping a hassle-free and smooth experience.

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Integration with social media:

Social media is the best way to catalog products. It builds a brand and works as a great advertisement tool. It is also the best platform to establish a conversation between the brand and the consumer.

Naturally, it’s also the best place to release coupons. This practice also attracts more people to keep up with the brand’s social media platforms. Coupons pique the interest of customers for a limited time. Therefore, online shopping platforms have begun integrating the shopping platform with social media to ensure a fast and smooth transition between the introduction of the coupon and the sale of the product.

More sales:

Increased customer reach and conversion rates directly impact sales. Increase in sales results in a direct increase in income. This, in turn, increases capital which means that companies can invest more in research and development. Because of this, the general quality of products has increased, and newer products are being released into the market at the fastest rates.

This is also a very sustainable model because this increased capital can be used to fund even more coupons which will, in return, increase sales at an even higher rate.

This creates a cycle whose result is increased revenue for the company and cheaper prices for consumers. This has promoted a fast lifestyle where tons of cheaper products are available for purchase. Purchasing is done from the comfort of the buyers’ home, where the shopping process itself takes very little time.

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Increased brand reach:

As couponing leads to higher sales and attracts more traffic, a significant increase in brand visibility has been witnessed over the years. Coupons aren’t always sent out by the brand. Sometimes the brand ties up with other companies or even publishes advertisements. At times, people spend their time searching for coupons available on the internet. Coupons introduce a whole new demographic of potential customers to the company. This has resulted in a tremendous increase in brand reach.


Couponing has changed the online shopping industry by introducing a new type of cut-throat competition. It has also increased the sales of products which then funds more reform in the industry. As a result, the online shopping experience is now better than ever. Be it better designing the sites or increased accessibility and additional support features; it is no doubt that the couponing has changed the online shopping industry for the better.

Looking for coupons? is an example of an online shopping site that offers good quality products at heavily discounted prices. Happy couponing!