From ArticleWorld

A coupon is a certificate that is usually redeemable for a cash discount on a product or service, or a certificate presented for a needed item. Places that case discounts can be found are in newspapers, newsletters, fliers, and on websites. Sometimes coupons can also be bound in a book or can be presented as stand alone items that look similar to gift certificates.

Purpose of coupons

Coupons are often used to encourage new buyers to purchase an existing item. This helps increase sales of that item. The similar effect applies to the purchase of new items. For example, new items introduced to the market sometimes sell for a certain percentage off (i.e. 50% off) of the regular price in order to encourage awareness of a product and to spark interest in that product. This is true for a new service or business introduced in an area as well.

Retail vs. manufacturer

Many times coupons are redeemable in the store, but in some rare cases need to be sent in to the manufacturer for discount. This is usually considered a rebate, however, and that is discussed in another article. A coupon for the sake of this article is considered an item that is redeemable immediately and can be usually turned in to any cashier at the time of purchase.

Conditions for use

The only condition placed on coupons is usually that only one coupon is that usually only one discount coupon is allows per customer per visit. This also true with buy one get one free items, as well as items given away as no charge with a coupon. It is one of the most effective ways to entice a person into a retail store. It is also a very valuable technique practiced online as well.

Many online services as well as retail merchants close to a person’s home will make use of the coupon as a promotional item. This is one of the ways in which they help draw in more business and increase more sales.