DEERFIELD, Ill. -- While coupon distribution is decreasing for grocery brands, it's substantially rising in the health and beauty care category, according to NCH Marketing Services here.
HBC coupon distribution increased nearly 16% last year. In comparison, distribution for grocery products declined by 2.7%.
The findings were so significant that NCH ran the numbers three times to make sure they were correct, Charles Brown, vice president of marketing for NCH, told SN.
"While grocery products have been reducing the volume of coupons they've printed, HBC has been doing the complete opposite," Brown said.
NCH said some of this HBC activity can be attributed to Procter & Gamble, Cincinnati, which has many brands in the HBC category. Yet NCH noted that many other HBC brands have also significantly increased their distribution.
The highest growth came in the oral hygiene category, thanks in large part to the introduction of teeth-whitening products.
Meanwhile, consumer packaged goods manufacturers distributed 248 billion coupons last year, a 3.8% increase. However, just 3.8 billion were redeemed, a 5% decrease.
NCH attributes the drop, in part, to shorter expiration dates. Expiration dates decreased by nine days to an average of 12.6 weeks, from 13.9 weeks in 2001.
Seventy-one percent of consumers agree that coupons saved them a lot of money in 2002, up from 51% who said the same in 2001.