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Retailers Trust Rebates To Pull In PC Customers

Computer retailers are turning their collective back on conventional advertising and instead are offering rebates in greater numbers to help drive sales, according to a new study by Beyen Corp.

The number of retailer ads dropped 21.4 percent during the first three-quarters of 2002, but rebates account for about 66 percent of all desktop computer related offerings at retail. In 2001 this figure was about 53 percent.

“As long as they bring people into the stores, retailers will continue to hammer away with mail-in, instant and upgrade rebates,” said Roger Lanctot, Beyen’s advertising analysis director.

Notebook computers, however, are receiving very healthy ad support with an increase of 22.2 percent taking place so far this year compared to 2001. Now 8.6 percent of all computer product related ads are for notebooks. Retailers have also increased the number of ads for PC monitors, digital cameras and PDAs, Lanctot said. Inkjet and laser printers were the only other product category to see a decrease in ad support.

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