Coupons hot commodity at DurangoDowntown.com


Coupons hot commodity at DurangoDowntown.com

In the wake of rising prices, Durangoans are  following a national trend and “clipping” coupons from the web in ever increasing numbers. In the last several months, the DurangoDowntown.com team has noted a steady (up to 200 times) increase in visits to the local site and “clippings” of the on-line values. [ see free online grocery coupons ]

“It went from very minimal participation to thousands in just a few months. It’s an interesting phenomenon,” said Sheri Amass, former owner of DurangoDowntown.com. “I know that myself, I save up to 20 percent on my grocery bill by using coupons from the site and shopping via our links to online store flyers, and I think people are realizing this across the board.”

According to Jonathan Honig, publisher of the investment site CapitalistPig.com, speaking recently on Fox News, coupon use does tend to rise in tough economic times. He cites a 30 percent savings for those who are “shrewd” in their use of coupons.

Rising food prices are largely responsible for the increased coupon use, according to John Handley, the government relations director for the Sacramento-based California Independent Grocers Association. In the past six months, the California Coupon Redemption Center has seen a steady 20 percent rise in the number of coupons received from grocers statewide. The center is a branch of the Grocers Association, which represents a majority of supermarkets across the state, including independent, regional and major stores.

Overall, noted Honig, the industry reports that in 2007, shoppers redeemed 2.6 billion grocery manufacturer coupons, and 87 percent of consumers will and do use coupons.

"Researchers say with diligent use of grocery store coupons, a family of four could save double the amount of the $1,200 stimulus check from the Internal Revenue Service,” said Amass, noting that according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, a typical family of four spends $800 per month on groceries. “If careful shopping with coupons and store promotions could slice 25 percent from the monthly bill, that equals a savings of $200 per month, or $2400 per year.”

In light of more difficult times, Amass is looking to expand the local promotions offered on DurangoDowntown.com, for the benefit of both residents and local businesses. In addition to manufacturers’ grocery coupons, the site features promotions from businesses such as the Spaaah Shop & Day Spa, Animas Trading Company and Zia Taqueria. [ see local coupons ]

“The whole genesis of DurangoDowntown was to provide for the betterment of our community,” said Amass. “If coupons and promotions help, then that’s something we want to be a part of.”

The web site DurangoDowntown.com is designed for both locals and visitors, and offers a wealth of information, including a user-friendly online community calendar, local and regional news, an interactive business directory, coupons and more. For further information, call 970.259.1000 or email info@durangodowntown.com.

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