They failed to check with the consumer first, however. The usage of Internet coupons accounts for far less than 1% of coupons issued by consumer products companies in the U.S. NCH Marketing Services Inc. (Deerfield, Ill.) puts the number at 0.2%, while the Promotion Marketing Association (New York) offers a kinder 0.5% usage rate.
NCH has examined the number of Internet coupon introductions and has found growth is subsiding. Growing concerns about fraud and counterfeiting are leading many companies to rethink the concept. As a result, the number of Internet coupons rose only 10% in 2004, after three consecutive years of 50% growth.
Nonetheless, experts believe Internet coupons have potential, especially considering the fact that many companies regard them as an efficient means of targeting consumers. Furthermore, consumers are not exactly embracing traditional paper coupons; manufacturers and retailers spent $275 billion on coupons in 2004 (a 6.6% rise from 2003, according to NCH), but consumers redeemed only 1% ($3.3 billion) of total coupon value that year.
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Calif.). Information about the Milk Genomics Consortium can be obtained by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.