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8 Creative Discount Code Ideas To Elevate Your Online Sales

ByNitesh Chand

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When it comes to online stores, a common dilemma is deciding if, when, and how to offer discounts. These discounts are a good way to boost customer loyalty and increase sales. However, if not used carefully, they can harm your brand or be financially damaging.

In this guide, we've covered various discount code ideas and strategies from brands like eBay, Mango, and Subway, showing how they attract customers and increase sales with deals and unique discounts.

Table of contents

1. Weekly deals

Weekly deals are special promotions that pop up regularly, offering significant discounts and deals for a limited time. These can include percentage discounts or special pricing on a variety of products. They are designed to catch your eye and provide great value, encouraging quick purchases.

In the first week of March 2024, eBay's spring sale highlighted the appeal of these deals. They offered a code, SPRINGSAVE20, granting a 20% discount on a diverse range of items, from home gadgets to fashion.

You can do something similar and have weekly deals that are based on the theme of any event, season, holiday, or trend. For instance, you can have one for Winter, Summer, Christmas, Halloween, etc., or even dedicate a week to a specific group of people like techies, influencers, students, and so on.

More discount code ideas for weekly deals

  • SUMMERFUN30: A 30% discount on summer essentials.
  • FALLFEST15: A 15% discount on Autumn collections.
  • WINTERWARMER10: A 10% discount code for winter gear.
  • TECHTREAT25: A 25% off on electronics for tech enthusiasts.
  • FASHIONFORWARD20: A 20% discount on fashion items.

2. Minimum purchase discount

Minimum purchase discounts are promotional offers where customers receive a discount only if their total purchase reaches a specific amount. This type of discount provides a direct saving to customers and also cleverly encourages them to add more items to their carts, potentially increasing the average order size and overall sales.

In the final 10 days of February 2024, Mango introduced a promotion involving a 30% discount with free shipping for purchases over $230. This offer was designed to encourage the target audience to explore not only Mango's clothing lines but also their Mango Home collection.

You can strategically set up a minimum order amount by analyzing your records and aiming to increase the average order value of your ecommerce store. However, you need to keep in mind that the minimum order value should be reasonable and offer a substantial discount for your customers to want it and yet result in a profit for you.

More discount code ideas for minimum purchase discounts

  • SEASON25ON200: A 25% discount on seasonal collections for purchases over $200 with free shipping offers.
  • FIRSTBUY20OFF150: A welcome offer of 20% off for first-time customers on purchases above $150.
  • 15FAMILY300: A 15% discount for purchases exceeding $300.
  • WEEKEND10OVER100: A weekend special offering 10% off on any purchase over $100.

3. Loyalty-based discount

Loyalty-based discounts are all about giving a nod to your regulars/VIP customers, those loyal customers who've been with a brand through thick and thin. They're like a brand's way of saying "thanks for sticking with us," offering perks that get sweeter with time. You can offer discount codes that are specific to customer loyalty program members or even specific to one member.

Take Express in early February 2024, for example. They took this concept and gave it a stylish twist, exclusively for their insiders, with the coupon code ‘Sent to Insiders’. This 30% off everything deal was a thank-you card in the form of a discount, available only to those who've joined their club.

More discount code ideas for loyalty-based discounts

  • VIPACCESS20: A 20% discount for VIP members.
  • YEARLY10: A 10% discount for customers on their membership anniversary.
  • BONUS5OFF: An extra 5% off for members who have made a certain number of purchases.

4. Credit card offers

Store-exclusive credit card offers are smart ways to combine savings with exclusive privileges. They transform regular shopping into a chance for extra rewards, showing a brand's appreciation for and incentive to loyal cardholders. You can even collaborate with different credit card companies to offer exclusive discounts to their users.

Boscov's is presenting such an offer, valid until April 4, 2024. Using a Boscov credit card, shoppers get an extra 15% off everything sitewide and 6% cash back. Accessing this benefit is easy: just enter “BOSRENEWCOPY” in the online checkout process. This deal offers immediate savings and cash back, exclusively for Boscov's credit card holders, enhancing shopping experiences and customer loyalty.

More discount code ideas for credit card offers

  • VISA20SHIP: A 20% discount for VISA card users with no shipping costs.
  • AXIS15: A 15% discount for Axis Bank credit card users.
  • MASTER10: A 10% appreciation discount for Master card users.

5. Product-specific discount

Product-specific discounts are a strategic approach in retail marketing in which a store offers a significant price reduction on a select range of items. This tactic is not merely about cutting costs but is a better way to refresh inventory while providing customers with substantial value. By targeting certain products, retailers can encourage sales in specific categories, often helping customers make more affordable purchases.

For instance, In January 2024, Old Navy offered a generous 35% discount on selected new products, catering especially to families looking to update their wardrobes without overspending. The process to use this discount was simple and customer-friendly: shoppers could apply the code “NAVYIST” at checkout, making the shopping experience enjoyable and hassle-free.

More discount code ideas for product-specific discount

  • US20: A 20% discount on US Polo items.
  • KIDS10: A 10% discount on children's clothing.
  • WOMENSDAY10: A 10% discount on women’s clothing.

6. First-order discount

Offering a discount to new customers with their first order is a straightforward yet effective way for businesses to grow their customer base. This approach specifically targets individuals making their first purchase, turning casual website visitors into regular clients. By offering a welcome coupon, the first purchase becomes more tempting and affordable.

An excellent illustration of this strategy is KitchenAid's latest promotion. KitchenAid is currently offering a 30% discount on the first subscription of their water filters. This significant discount is particularly attractive to those considering a quality water filtration solution. To use this discount, new subscribers need to enter the promo code SUB30SNL at checkout.

More discount code ideas for first-order discounts

  • WELCOME20: A 20% off on the first purchase.
  • FIRSTBUY10: A 10% discount for new customers on their initial order.
  • NEWCOMER15: 15% off exclusively for first-time subscribers or purchasers.
  • START30: A 30% discount for newcomers, applicable on select products.

7. BOGO(Buy One Get One)

Buy One, Get One Free (BOGO) discounts are promotional offers where customers can purchase one item and receive another item of the same or lesser value for free. These deals, often integral to brand positioning, are used by businesses to attract customers, boost sales volume, and enhance their market presence.

For instance, Subway recently offered two promotions for its footlong subs, exclusively for Subway Rewards members. One of them was a buy-one-get-one-free (BOGO) deal, where customers received a free sub after buying one at full price, using the code FLBOGO online or in the app.

More discount coupon code ideas for BOGO discounts

  • HALFPRICE: 50% off on the second item when you buy two.
  • FREESECOND: Get the second item free on purchasing the first.
  • KIDSFREE: Free kid's meal with the purchase of an adult meal.
  • FRIDAY2FOR1: Black Friday coupon code where you buy any item and get a second one of equal or lesser value.

8. Referral promo code

A referral promo code is a unique code provided to customers of a service or product that they can share with others. When a new customer joins and purchases using this code, the person who shared the code receives a benefit, such as a discount or reward. This marketing strategy encourages current customers to promote the product or service to their network, leveraging word-of-mouth marketing to gain new customers.

Dropbox displayed a perfect example of referral marketing. When customers register for a Dropbox account and become part of their email list, they instantly receive a distinct referral link to distribute to their friends. The reward for each referral differs based on the account type: Basic account holders earn 500 MB per referral, whereas Plus account users gain 1 GB for each successful referral.

More discount code ideas for referral promo codes

  • SHARE20: When a referred friend makes their first purchase, both the referrer and the new customer receive a $20 credit towards their next purchase.
  • REFER25: The referrer gets a 25% discount code for every new customer they bring in who makes a purchase.
  • NEWFRIEND10: The new customer gets a 10% discount on their first purchase through a referral code.

Conclusion

These diverse promo code ideas, from eBay's weekly deals to KitchenAid's first-order discount, showcase innovative ways businesses can attract and retain customers. By offering these varied discount opportunities, brands can encourage immediate purchases while also improving brand awareness and creating long-term customer loyalty and engagement. These examples serve as a blueprint for other businesses looking to creatively and effectively boost their market presence and customer base.

FAQs

To track the effectiveness of different discount code strategies, monitor key metrics such as redemption rates, sales increases, and customer acquisition costs. Additionally, analyzes customer behavior changes and their impact on overall revenue and profitability.

Discount codes can be tailored for specific customer segments by offering them exclusive deals, which helps in attracting those particular groups. Additionally, tracking the use of these codes via email addresses provides valuable insights into the shopping habits and preferences of different demographics.

Yes, there are legal considerations in creating and distributing discount codes. Businesses must comply with laws related to advertising, consumer protection, and pricing. Best practices include being transparent about terms, avoiding misleading promotions, honoring expiration dates, and protecting customer data to safeguard both customers and the brand.

To secure discount codes, generate unique codes for each campaign to prevent unauthorized use, and set expiration dates to limit their validity. Additionally, use secure platforms for distribution and redemption, monitor code usage for suspicious activity, and clearly communicate terms and conditions to prevent misuse.

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