Stores trump brands when consumers hunt for deals


PollA new survey from an online coupon provider says that consumers will search for a particular brand – but they are far more likely to see what the deals are at a particular store.

The study comes from, which calls it its first ever Buy-havior Report.

The key finding: 62% search for online coupons and other deals by store; 24% search by the product they seek; and only 14% looked for a specific branded product. And this is important, because according to ShopAtHome, 88.2M consumers will be going online in search of deals during the course of 2012.

“Consumers are really creatures of habit when it comes to looking for coupons – they go where they know they can consistently find the best deals,” said Marc Braunstein, co-founder and CEO of”

Here are some of the report’s key findings:

* Savvy spenders are creatures of habit: 73 percent of consumers using

* used it between 7:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m., regardless of the day of the week. Only 18 percent used it after 6:00 p.m.

* “Toilet paper” was the most-searched term on the site and has been for the past two months.

* Consumers are more likely to be searching for deals on items they consistently buy.

* Half of the top ten searched terms were for consumable goods like toilet paper, laundry detergent, coffee and butter. 

* Following toilet paper, “laundry detergent” was the next highest search, with 16,307 consumers looking for online savings.

* Animal lovers were equally fond of discounts, with 13,120 of online coupon and savings searches done for pet food and supplies.

* Of the 62 percent of consumers looking for store-centric savings, Wal-Mart was the most-searched for retailer followed by Kohl’s and Target respectively.

* Sony was the most-searched for brand out of the 14 percent of consumers searching for brand names. It was searched three times more than the next brand on the list: Swiffer.

* New York City residents used the site most followed by Houston, Chicago, Los Angeles and Denver respectively.

* The average user receives $41 in cash back per month. As much as 10,000 checks are mailed out each month to users.

RBR-TVBR observation: There’s no getting around it – like a lot of consumers these days, those of us in this household are increasing loyal to one thing and one thing only: The number we see after the symbol “$” – and the lower that number is, the better.

Sometimes we’ll find that on a special occasion, we can get a brand we know and like at a cheaper price than another brand or generic that we are usually willing to settle for.

Other times, we find that a generic is just as good as a branded product that invariably is more expensive – this is bad news in particular for Maxwell House and Folgers in this household, because to this caffeine junkie our store brand is indistinguishable from the two higher-priced options.

Advertisers need to weigh all of this when deciding how to market and price their products.

For a local broadcast salesperson looking to score some retail business, what this study suggests is that you advise your potential clients to advertise the scope of savings offered in their store rather than focusing the message on a few popular and well-known brands.