Your Guide To Ecommerce Coupons Part One

As evidenced by sites like Groupon, The Daily Save, and most recently, Facebook Deals, offering coupons to online shoppers is a growing trend.  Many ecommerce merchants also offer coupons to their customers as a way to increase both sales and customer loyalty.  If you’ve never really experimented with offering coupons, though, the process may seem a little intimidating.

In this post, the first in our three-part series on ecommerce coupons, we’ll explore the most common types.

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There are several different commonly-used ecommerce coupons. You will probably want to experiment with a few different types to start with so that you can decide which ones work best for your site.

Holiday Promotional

These are short-term coupons designed to be valid for a specified period of time, usually leading up to and sometimes immediately after, a major holiday.  Online retailers know that consumers tend to spend more money in general online during the holiday season, and more money on specific products during the weeks and days leading up to holidays such as Easter, the Fourth of July, and Memorial Day.

Daily Promotions

This type of online coupon has been popularized by sites like Groupon and The Daily Save, but ecommerce merchants can also use them to strengthen sales and customer loyalty and attract new customers at the same time.  One draw of this type of coupon is that their short shelf life (24-48 hours in most cases) allows retailers to offer deeper discounts than they might be able to with longer-life coupon types.

Exclusive Offers

Offering exclusive coupons to customers who “Like” you on Facebook, follow you on Twitter, subscribe to your mailing list, and who frequently purchase items from your site are great ways to do a little PR while potentially boosting your sales at the same time.  Make sure that these “exclusive deals” are actually exclusive, though. Don’t offer the same coupon codes elsewhere on your site or online, otherwise, customers will quickly lose their motivation to allow you to send them special offers,  and will likely lose trust in your company as well.

Of course, choosing the right type of coupon is only part of a successful ecommerce retailer coupon strategy. Next week, we’ll cover the basics of offering coupons, promotion and marketing, and more.