Coupons have always had on influence on how we shop. This is true since we, as shoppers, seek to find the best value and quality of our products at the best price. This basic principle is, of course, called economics where we, as humans, try to utilize scarce resources in order to act and strive as a successful society. In essence, people use the means of coupons in order to find great deals, quality in a product, and greater happiness.

In the psychoanalysis of this social science, I will have to discuss where our products come from and how they get here. See, most corporations do not tell you the means of where they get most of their products in order to sell to a populace hungry for useful goods. According to Caron Beesley from the US Small Business Administration, he goes into context to discuss how coupons “are really another form of marketing” which will lead to the promotion of “businesses where local customers can realize quick and easy savings” (1). This is an important reality that most businesses should realize since offering such discounts to the general public will cause them to come in to establishments. This idea will then lead to the average consumer purchasing great products at unbelievable values. Beesley goes into discussing the importance of e-commerce in the equation of coupons. He mentions how “group purchasing sites are dominated by a lucrative young market” which will force most consumers to “Pay 50% of the original offer” (2). Groupons have become the new coupons of this generation. As stated before, businesses try to find new and innovative ways to attract this new generation of consumers by posting a group of discounted items on a board which specializes in discounting a group of selected items. Even though the realm of coupons may seem satisfying to the average consumer, there can be potential downsides to such satisfaction.

A note from us at I’m In:  We offer a group of discounted items at I’m In!

Coupons may help the average consumer, but at the same time, they can potentially put a dent in the profits of a local business. This is true since most retailers have to pay the distribution companies a wholesale price and in order to make any form of a marginal profits, they must mark up the product to a higher price. Giving coupons to people may hurt a company’s potential profits. According to Bob Phibbs from The Retail Doctors, he mentions the malicious intent of coupons distributors and how they can hurt businesses. There was an experience he discusses stating how “People were buying 5” sets of products with the help of coupons, which then led to the same family using “1 for each of their 4 kids” (2). Some people may think that they are saving money for themselves with the use of coupons, but according to Phibbs, this can lead to a bad outcome for a company’s potential bottom line profits. On the other hand, as stated previously, the family was still able to use these coupons in order to buy products for great deals. If the family uses word of mouth, this business could have more people begging to buy their products for great deals. Phibbs continues with another story on how coupons have personally hurt his business, yet he was still able to find potential success through changing certain terms. He talked about how “400 were sold under wrong terms” yet he was able to “change the fine print” (3). Eventually he “sold 1158, the most successful groupon” (3). By taking an analytical approach to Phibbs findings, he virtually disproved himself on the usefulness of coupons since his sales were able to fully increase through minor tweaks to his regulations of coupons.
Coupons have always helped us find great values for consumers like myself. Without them, we would find shopping for products much harder. The more coupons out there for the consumers, the better for retailers and customers.