As consumer prices climb, millions of Americans are trying to stretch their dollars further – and some are saving big online.
That shift drove the use of digital coupons as demand from traditional paper coupons fell. Digital coupons are "clipped" virtually when a customer selects them in an app, the savings is applied to a future purchase.
"So the digital coupon takes that guesswork out of it, you just scan a product and it pops up … I’ve saved hundreds of dollars," said Christina H., who runs a YouTube channel dedicated to finding deals. "I make sure to plan out my purchases before I go to the store so I know how to navigate the store and find what I need."
In 2019, less than 25% of coupon redemptions were digital. Now, 33% of coupon redemptions are digital while only 24% of redemptions come from paper inserts.
Beyond digital coupons, other online savings methods, like cash rebate platforms have surged in popularity. While coupons reduce the price a customer would pay, cash-back apps can use a picture of the purchase receipt to refund money to the user after a transaction.
"As soon as I get to my car I scan that receipt, by the time I get home the cash back is usually in my account," said Krystal Sharp, who runs a blog about maximizing deals. "It saves a lot of time in my opinion because there’s no clipping or sorting, and it’s deeper than just free things at the grocery store; I can use the money I save to make my life better."
Bryan Leach, CEO of cash-back platform Ibotta, told FOX Business rebate apps are the fastest growing form of online promotion. The company has "given away" $1.1 billion in cash back in the decade since the app launched. Leach likened the app to a second source of income for the people who use it and feel they are being "paid to shop."
"We believe it’s important to cut the consumer in on the deal," Leach said. "If they [consumers] are going to spend time, energy, attention, share information about what they like to buy, what do they get in return, we can say concretely you’ll earn hundreds of dollars a year."
While Ibotta works with multiple retailers, Leach explained the company will soon launch a new cash-back platform for Walmart.