Vouchers and cashback offers boom as shoppers tighten belts

OFFERS on price comparison websites, cashback services and voucher schemes have become an advertising market worth more than £800m in the UK.

Research from the IAB UK, produced by professional services firm PwC, out today claims that the offers – known as online performance marketing (OPM) – have become one of the fastest growing parts of the advertising business, with spending expected to rise by 25 per cent in 2013.

The IAB/PwC claims that the £814m spent by advertisers on OPM in 2012 generated £9bn in sales, so for every pound spent, businesses take £11 back. Unlike with display advertising, OPM advertisers only pay if someone completes an action, for example clicking a link or completing a purchase.

Examples include cashback site Quidco, in which shoppers receive a small return on purchases they make, or special banking rates on comparison websites such as MoneySupermarket. The rise of the ecommerce, as well as squeezed budgets, has led to savvy shoppers using these services.

“Economically challenging times have seen marketing budgets squeezed,” PwC’s Anna Bartz said.

“As a result, we expect that the attractiveness of paying for advertising based on an extremely measurable and specific consumer action will see more advertisers using OPM.”

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