Couponing Worldwide

international coupon usage

International Coupon Use on the Rise

Around the world, coupon use appears to be on the increase as expansion of markets and retailers drive coupon use and competition up in developing countries. China holds the top spot of reported coupon use as a strategy to save money, while the U.S.A. and U.K. follow closely. The below data provides a sampling of coupon redemption and use both online and in physical store locations.

General Worldwide Coupon Redemption Trends

The data shows that among the top countries using coupons to save money, there is no clear-cut trend among the countries. China and the U.S. top the list, but other large countries are missing from the list. Belgium and Portugal represent the only two countries in Western Europe. There is a mixture of developed and developing countries on the list, with no countries from the Middle East or Africa represented in the top 10. Reported use of coupons is greatest in North America (65%) and Asia Pacific (55%). The United States (66%), China (67%) and Hong Kong (65%) are the three leading markets for reported coupon use as a way to save money.

Top Ten Markets for Reported Coupon use as a Strategy to Save Money

top 10 coupon markets

Notable Worldwide Figures

China and promotion

  • 35% of hypermarket sales in key cities are sold on promotion—a stable contribution over the past two years.  In most Asian countries, simple price cut promotions are the main promotional vehicle supported by direct mail leaflets and newspaper advertising.

Europe has inconsistent coupon usage

  • While 385 of European consumers indicate using coupons to save, there is wide variation within the continent. While at least half of consumers reported coupon use in several western and southern European countries, such as Belgium and Portugal (63%), Greece (55%), France (53%), and Spain (50%), in other markets, particularly in northern and Eastern Europe, coupon use is much less prevalent.  Belgians are the record holders in terms of coupon redemption, but in countries like Germany or the Netherlands, their usage is very marginal.  Many retailers in Europe are rather reluctant towards that practice.

Low coupon usage in Latin America, Middle East, Africa

  • In Latin America and in Middle East/Africa, reported coupon use is much less common as a saving strategy. Only 25% of consumers in Latin America and 18 percent of respondents from Middle Eastern/African markets report using coupons. In the Middle East, price cuts is the most popular promotional vehicle used by retailers along with volume discounts.  However, consumers are gaining a greater awareness of leaflets, which are driving store visits and prompting retailers to actively advertise promotions in newspapers.

Couponing Trends in 5 Countries Around the World


  • It’s a relatively new and youth-oriented phenomenon in China, where consumerism has taken off only as the country has shifted from central planning to capitalism and started to grow.
  • There are coupon kiosks in subways, malls and supermarkets, and almost every major brand offers a discount card. Eyeball China, a Beijing-based company, prints 170,000 coupons every day for restaurants, car rentals and other goods and services and places them in about 200 kiosks across the capital.
  • “The market is so saturated with brand names that a small discount makes a huge difference helping the brand stand out with their target consumers,” said Xie Dehui, Eyeball China’s vice general manager.
  • China’s biggest online shopping site,, has more than 150 million registered users. The website connects buyers and sellers who offer everything from cars to English lessons and often have direct connections to Chinese manufacturers offering steep discounts.”We looked to online promotions since many of our customers are part of the post-’80s and ’90s generation,” said Cai Gongming, a Mercedes vice president. “It’s a big trend right now. … They are familiar with online group buying.”
  •, previously little-known, became an overnight sensation in June by offering a $25 package of two movie tickets, two sodas, ice cream and popcorn for only $6. It sold about 150,000 packages, generating nearly $900,000 in sales over a 24-hour period.


  • Couponing has become widespread throughout Germany: Only 20% of Germans have not used any form of coupons
  • 60% of Germans feel that couponing will take on a more important role in citizens’ shopping habits in the future
  • Four out of ten coupon users redeem coupons at least once a month.
  • Coupons are used most frequently at supermarkets
  • Coupons are mostly associated with vouchers and discounts (27% of all types)
  • when asked to think about coupon providers, Germans primarily think about supermarkets, and shopping centres, etc.
  • As regards the usage of different types of coupons, classic discount coupons have a strong lead, “mobile” coupons are not (yet) well known
  • Price savings are seen as the biggest advantage of using coupons
  • PAYBACK is by far the best-known couponing provider (86 percent)- more used than Groupon
  • Payback is also seen as by far the most trustworthy (55 percent) and versatile couponing provider (60 percent)

United Kingdom

  • Online Coupons prove most popular
  • YouGov survey highlights consumers more likely to redeem coupons printed online compared to those sourced elsewhere
  • New YouGov research conducted on behalf of and published by in the UK and Europe has highlighted the increasing influence of printable-coupons in influencing consumers’ purchasing habits.
  • The survey, which draws on a nationally representative sample of 1,790 adults across the UK, showed an 11% year-on-year increase in fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) and supermarket coupon redemptions. The survey also found 28% of consumers were more careful to remember coupons when heading to the supermarket, and 16% were using coupons more than they were a year ago.
  • While approximately 60% of all coupons redeemed in the UK were retailer specific or from retailer loyalty programmes, such as Tesco Clubcard or Nectar, the research also revealed a significant and growing opportunity for both retailers and brands alike to adopt and embrace printable coupons, with 57% of consumers having printed an online coupon and a massive 81% of the respondents who had previously never printed a coupon, indicating that they would be willing to do so. Furthermore, the research highlighted that women aged 25-39 showed the highest rates of participation in the use of online coupons.
  • Furthermore, the research shows that if consumers knew that there were coupons available, 52% would be willing to visit a retailer’s website and 42% willing to visit a brand’s website.


  • Brazil had the most far-reaching visitors to the category of coupons with 16.1%, representing a total audience of 6.8 million visitors.
  • Brazil is Groupon’s largest audience in Latin America, with 2.5 million visitors representing 6% of internet users
  • Brazil has a more mature coupon market compared to other countries in the region
  • The top coupon sites in Brazil (in order) are
    • Groupon
    • Groupalia


  • India’s leader in the coupon space is SnapDeal which boasts more than 15 million registered users in February 2012
  • SnapDeal ships to more than 4,000 cities and towns in India and features more than 50,000 merchants on their site.
  • As of June 2011 these are the top Indian deals sites:
    • (Groupon)
  • India’s Online Couponing Gender Breakdown
    • Males: 62%
    • Females: 38%
  • India’s online couponing age demographics:

India’s online couponing age demographics

Nielsenwire: Global Consumers
Nielsen Shopping & Saving Strategies Around The World
Nielsenwire: Global Consumers Chart
“Among Young Chinese, Cult of the Coupon Rises”
“Couponing in Germany”- Survey by TNS
Germany’s “Payback Deals”
UK- online coupons prove most popular
Couponing in the UK
Couponing in Latin America
Indias largest online Couponing Site Snapdeal
About SnapDeal India
Top 10 Deals Sites in India
India’s ichart
India ichart Age Demographic
India ichart Gender Breakdown
India Mobile Coupon Users