• October 6, 2011

Mobile Users Have Mixed Feelings About Location-Based Coupons

A recent mobile survey by Prosper Mobile Insights revealed that most mobile users think location-based coupons are convenient and useful, but the majority would prefer to receive coupons on their mobile devices via email. Almost half of mobile users also have privacy concerns when it comes to location-based coupons.

Sharing their locations with retailers to receive discounts might be worth the privacy risk for the majority of mobile consumers, as 67 percent agree strongly or somewhat that location-based coupons are very convenient and useful, according to the survey.

Further, one in four (25.6 percent) say they would prefer to receive coupons on their smartphones or tablets automatically when they are near a store. However, double that number (51.1 percent) would prefer to receive coupons on their devices via email. Manually searching for coupons, scanning QR codes, and receiving promotional texts/IMs also rank higher than automatic location-based coupons. Receiving discounts on the spot, though, appears more popular than checking in through social media (only 10.3 percent would prefer this method).

The research found the following coupon preferences on smartphones/tablets:

  • Receive via email: 51.1 percent;
  • Manually search for them: 32.2 percent;
  • Scan a QR code when inside a store: 31.9 percent;
  • Receive via text or instant message: 31 percent
  • Receive automatically when near a store: 25.6 percent;
  • Check in through social media: 10.3 percent; and
  • Don't want to receive coupons at all on device: 18.1 percent.

While 81.9 percent are open to receiving coupons on their smartphones or tablets in one form or another, location-based coupons do raise privacy concerns, with 44.8 percent somewhat or very concerned about their location being tracked or other security issues; 29.6 percent are neutral while 25.6 percent are not concerned.

The majority of mobile users engage in shopping behaviors on their smartphones or tablets. Most conduct research: 76.4 percent browse or look for a product or service; while 73 percent use their devices to locate stores or store hours; 48.9 percent research specific products; and 45.7 percent read customer reviews. In addition, 42.2 percent have used their smartphones or tablets as coupons (scanning barcodes, showing texts to a cashier, etc.) Nearly two in five, 39.7 percent, have also made purchases directly on their mobile devices and 36.2 percent have scanned QR codes.

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