The coupon code has become the perfect accessory for every Ecommerce order. Customers search high and wide for discounts and the illustrious coupon code has brought many stores a slew of customers and additional business.
While discount codes are not right for every business (can anyone say yachts?), they are proven to work for almost any online store. They can not only bring in a new set of customers and raise sales, but also lower abandoned carts and grow social profiles.
Though coupon codes can grow sales and profits, they must be carefully managed. Used incorrectly and they can turn away customers or be an utter waste of time.
Here are some tips to keep in mind when using discount codes for your Ecommerce marketing campaigns:
The right discounts – Don’t assume every one of your customers will want 20% off. Perform some preliminary research to assess what coupons to which your target audience will respond the most. Would they like a 15% off? 10$ off? $15 off a specified amount? Free shipping? You can also target a specified demographic like new customers or include holidays and expiration dates. The choices are endless, which is why it is important to know your customers’ desires before taking the coupon plunge. Take a poll/survey in a newsletter or on a social site and research your competition to see what they are doing.
Avoid losing customers – Some customers will hightail off your checkout page if they don’t have a coupon once they see the coupon code box. Here are some ways to avoid this:
- Add a link to a pop-up that details your active coupon codes.
- Make the promo code box less noticeable. Though the customers who have a code will look for it, there is a fine line between keeping the box noticeable enough so customers don’t leave in frustration, and keeping it simple enough so buyers don’t leave the page searching for coupons. There is a strong chance many will not return because affiliate coupon sites lead potential customers directly to websites containing the products. Test several configurations of your promo code box to find the sweet spot.
- Avoid using words around the promo box like “coupon code” or “discount code.” Consider words like “offer” or “voucher” to keep customers without coupon codes on the checkout page and give those with codes exactly what they want.
- Another strategy is to add a coupon code page to your website so it will rank in the search engines for related keywords. Your coupon page should not take a long time to rank because it will be the most relevant since it is connected to your site. This has become a very popular practice for many Ecommerce stores.
Additional marketing – Some e-tailers strategically place email signups next to the promo code box to entice customers to sign up for future discounts. This is a great strategy to retain customers and build your email list. Make sure the form is simple and easy to fill out.
Share – Don’t forget to spread the word about your coupon codes and share them on social sites, in email newsletters and on related industry blogs/sites.
Tip: If you want to add the coupon code function to your Zencart store, check out the Shopping Cart with Coupons module. With the module you can not only transform your cart into a dynamic form using AJAX, but also allow customers to add coupon codes directly from the cart page. Customers can see their discount before registering which will help to increase overall conversions.