Do digital coupons discriminate against those who can least afford it?

by Samuel Pordengerg Nov 23, 2022 News
Do digital coupons discriminate against those who can least afford it?

Nov 23,2022.

The practice of digital couponing is being taken aim at by public interests groups because they say it is discrimination.

A letter to the supermarket industry signed by a number of public interest groups alleges that low income shoppers and seniors are being unfairly restricted from accessing in-store digital-only deals

Those discounts which are advertised in-store on shelves, signs, and circulars, but which require customers to digitally redeem them with a loyalty program account are the ones that the letter criticizes. Customers who are able to use the deals get significant discounts, while less tech- savvy shoppers miss out.

According to the letter, 25 percent of seniors don't use the internet and 39 percent don't have a mobile device. 43 percent of low income households don't have internet access.

The criticism of the digital couponing practice comes as a Moody's Analytics study finds that American households are spending more on groceries this year than they did in the previous year.

The practice of offering app-based digital coupons is controversial.

Since implementing coupons that can be clipped and redeemed via the app, sales at the club have increased by 43 percent. A survey shows that 74 percent of major retailers see a risk that customers will switch to another retailer if they don't have digital coupons.

Older demographic groups tend to benefit from retailers who make technology user friendly.

A demographic that generally has a lower rate of technological adoption is 55 and older, which is why Walgreens' app is popular with them.

Do you think digital coupons discriminate against certain demographic groups? Do retailers have an obligation to give advertised discounts to people without tech access?

Please practice The RetailWire Golden Rule when submitting your comments. Braintrust

Retailers don't have to accommodate less tech- savvy consumers, but those who do will earn sales and loyalty.