magsLocal news retailers in the UK accept a huge numbers of vouchers for newspapers and magazines yet the industry still fails to observe clear standards on how to produce them. As a result, for many local retailers vouchers look like risk rather than cash. Four out of 10 refuse to handle them.

For publishers, the purpose of vouchers is to win greater sales. However, independent retailers argue that supermarkets don’t care what they redeem vouchers against and have the market muscle to force publishers to pay. If publishers are paying for shoppers to buy other products in multiple outlets, that further damages their investment in the independent channel.

Surely it makes sense for publishers to set standards for vouchers that encourage independent retailers to accept them?