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Key Takeaways from the Ipsos Study on Shopping Apps in Germany

Ipsos study

Despite the increasing digitization of shopping, many consumers still focus on price sensitivity and savings. Historically, economic fluctuations have always influenced shopping behaviors. 

The Ipsos study on shopping apps in Germany reveals insightful data on this trend. 

Conducted via online interviews with 1,000 household shopping decision-makers and smartphone users, the study ran from October 19-26, 2023, with an additional survey on app usage from January 16-21, 2024. The representative sample was based on age, gender, and federal state. Read on to explore more detailed key findings from this comprehensive survey.

Shopping Behavior Changes

Germans are becoming more careful about their spending. In today’s economic climate, 55% of shoppers are paying closer attention to prices than ever before. Feeling secure and in control during tough times is more important than finding deals. Because of this, nearly half (47%) of shoppers are choosing cheaper or store-brand products to save money and feel more resourceful.

Photo by cottonbro studio: 

Discount programs are also playing a big role. About 42% of Germans use discount programs, coupons, and rebates regularly. Besides being convenient, these help people control their money better and manage it better. As a result, people are becoming more aware of the importance of being careful and smart with their money.

More people are also shopping at discount stores. Around 30% of shoppers are now going to these stores to get better deals and lower prices. This choice shows a change in thinking where people value getting the most for their money over sticking with a certain brand. Additionally, 29% of people have cut back on how much they buy overall, showing a move towards buying only what they need and being more thoughtful about their purchases.

Understanding why people are making these choices can help stores connect better with their customers. Retailers can better meet the changing needs of German consumers by highlighting the value and affordability of their products, promoting good discount programs, and appealing to shoppers who prefer discount shopping.

Usage of Advantage Programs

Germans show a clear preference for digital advantage programs, with 62% favoring the use of smartphone apps. This trend highlights the convenience and ease of accessing discounts and rewards on the go. Multipartner programs are especially popular, with 51% of users preferring these options. These programs allow shoppers to collect points and enjoy discounts from multiple partners, making them more versatile and valuable.

When it comes to desirable features in advantage programs, ease of use is a top priority. About 49% of users want programs that are easy to navigate, while 47% appreciate programs that help them save money. Security is also a concern, with 45% of users seeking programs they can trust with their data. These preferences indicate that consumers value not only the financial benefits of advantage programs but also the user experience and data security.

Stores and brands can tap into these trends by offering user-friendly apps and partnering with various businesses to provide comprehensive rewards programs. A focus on ease of use, security, and multipartner options can help them attract and retain smart shoppers.

App Installation and Utilization

German smartphone users have an average of 38 apps on their devices, with about 6 apps from physical stores and 5 from online retailers. Despite the high number of apps, only about half of them are actively used. This suggests that while users are open to installing new apps, they quickly abandon those that don’t meet their needs.

Photo by Vlada Karpovich: 

Functionality is a key factor in whether an app gets installed or deleted. A substantial 81% of users are willing to install apps that offer multiple functions. However, if an app doesn’t prove its worth, it gets deleted; 72% of users regularly clean up their smartphones, removing unused apps. This behavior indicates that users are seeking efficiency and value from the apps they choose to keep.

Photo by cottonbro studio: 

Preferences for app usability are clear. Around 76% of users want shopping apps to be usable both online and offline, ensuring convenience no matter where they are. Additionally, 73% prefer apps that connect with many providers and offer a range of functions. This preference for versatility means that users are looking for comprehensive solutions that simplify their shopping experience.

To keep users engaged, apps must be functional and versatile. Stores and brands can cater to these preferences by developing apps that provide multiple features, work seamlessly online and offline, and offer connections to various providers. Understanding these user tendencies can help in creating apps that not only get installed but also remain in active use, providing ongoing value to the consumer.

Popular Programs

In Germany, PAYBACK stands out as the most recognized and used bonus program. It enjoys a staggering 92% recognition rate and is used by 74% of shoppers. Its popularity is further highlighted by its high frequency of use, with 64% of users engaging with PAYBACK at least once a week. 

Users value PAYBACK for its ease of use, trustworthiness, multiple redemption options, and extensive partner network. 

The app’s common functions include activating coupons, checking point balances, collecting points, and redeeming or donating points, making it a versatile tool for savvy shoppers.

Other notable programs also have quite a following. The DeutschlandCard, Lidl Plus, and Rossmann App are popular alternatives, each offering unique advantages that appeal to German consumers. These programs are favored for their ability to provide targeted discounts and benefits, enhancing the shopping experience. 

The DeutschlandCard is known for its wide acceptance at various retailers, Lidl Plus offers substantial discounts on groceries, and the Rossmann App provides exclusive deals and promotions at one of the leading drugstore chains in Germany.

All of these programs, overall, demonstrate the importance of providing value, convenience, and a wide range of benefits to attract and retain users. Stores and brands looking to develop or improve their bonus programs can learn from the success of PAYBACK and its counterparts.


In essence, we see a growing emphasis on price sensitivity among German consumers, the widespread use of smartphones for managing shopping rewards, and the popularity of multipartner advantage programs. To ensure consumer engagement and retention, app developers must focus on functionality and ease of use. The churn rate in apps is rather high, with many users never returning – this should be taken into account when designing an e-commerce app. 

To stay informed on top similar topics, be sure to regularly check Ecommerce Germany News.

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