Promotions can increase acquisition, enhance conversions, drive engagement and boost user engagement — if they're designed effectively.
Studies show that 83% of consumers report that coupons affect their purchasing behaviour,¹ and approximately 57% of online shoppers who used a coupon code said they wouldn’t have purchased a product without one.²
The implications are clear: promotion strategies can significantly enhance your marketing campaigns and boost your conversion rates.
But how do you create effective coupon code campaigns that reach your target audience? What technology do you need to do this? And what can you do to encourage potential customers to engage?
This article outlines five of our top tips for delivering sales promotions that make an impact.
Suggested reading: Read our free eBook, ‘Do You Need A Promotion Engine?’, to learn more about promotions technology and how to implement an effective promotion strategy.
Tip 1: Distribute coupon codes effectively
Coupon codes are a great way to share your promotions, but must be relevant to each person who sees them. That means distributing the right coupons at the right time to the right customers.
To have maximum impact, coupons codes need to:
1. Reach their target market.
2. Be engaging enough to entice shoppers, with a clear call to action.
3. Support the customer journey, from the moment they first use the coupon to the completion of their purchase.
This third point is crucial; 35% of customers abandon their purchase after using a coupon code, so creating a streamlined customer journey is essential to improving conversion rates and boosting sales.³
But improving eCommerce conversion rates is just half of the story. Effective coupon code distribution helps activate customer journeys through social media, email marketing, CRMs, paid search and other channels.
For example, attaching coupons to social media ads is a powerful means of initiating buyer experiences while building brand awareness.
The value of single-use codes
To ensure coupon codes reach their intended destination, use an eCommerce promotion engine that is able to distribute single-use codes.
These codes are unique to each user and can be triggered on specific individual conditions, such as engagement metrics. Single-use codes provide highly accurate first-party attribution data and can help create improved customer experiences if delivered correctly.
Bulk codes, by contrast, are impersonal and often appear on third-party sites, diminishing their value for fostering longer-term customer relationships.
How EE Perk ran controlled promotions with Uniqodo⁴
Challenge: EE wanted to offer 20% discounts to EE Perk clients and EE employees. However, their previous multi-use codes had led to this discount being shared publicly, and they were eventually forced to withdraw a number of codes.
Solution: EE implemented Uniqodo’s single-use codes and was able to quickly expand its EE Perk network without losing control of its coupon discounts.
Results: Administration costs were cut by 95% as EE was able to easily track, share and distribute codes. They expanded their Perk network to 1500 users, helping to reach monthly promotion goals and sales targets.
Tip 2: Take a conversions-first approach
The point of conversion, when a shopper decides to either make a purchase or abandon their cart, is crucial for driving sales with coupon codes. Cart abandonment is one of the most significant areas of revenue loss in eCommerce, with nearly 70% of customers abandoning their shopping after adding to their basket.⁵
To prevent your customers from becoming part of these statistics, ensure your promotional messaging is well-aligned with your customer's pain points. Here are a few ways you can use promo codes to stop basket abandonment:
Use time-sensitive codes with buy-in windows help to engage customers and guide them to convert.
Use intelligent codes that can recognise customers ‘upon visit’.
Target returning shoppers. They are already interested in your product, and may just need an additional discount or promotional offer to incentivise a purchase.
Taking a conversions-first approach can also enable targeted eCommerce cross-selling and up-selling, potentially boosting customer lifetime values by 30-50% while improving your bottom line. ⁶
Remember, promotions are more than just coupon codes: they are incentives, and must be delivered at just the right moment in the customer journey.
How Uniqodo helped BT Shop boost its conversions
Challenge: Deliver a promotion for the Sony PlayStation 5 release to encourage sales and deliver high-quality customer experiences. The initial promotion suffered from promo code abuse, so they needed a promotion engine that would remain secure.
Solution: Uniqodo delivered a secure API integration that was able to cope with high levels of demand. An added identifier allowed BT to cross-check customers who had previously tried to purchase and deliver a new, unique code.
Results: BT shop achieved an 85.8% conversion rate for their exclusive PS5 promotion, and was praised on social media as well as by Sony for their excellent customer service. It was able to stop promotional codes leaking online, even during periods of high demand.
Tip 3: Turn your promotions into personalised experiences
80% of customers are more likely to make a purchase when a brand delivers a personalised experience.⁸ And excellent promotions are a crucial element of this.
Don’t arbitrarily add codes to your landing pages — really commit to building a personalised marketing strategy that supports the user journey and boosts conversions. One way in which you can do this is by using gamification techniques, such as:
Mystery coupon codes
Consider everything from the timing of the promotion to the technical details in the user journey. Small details can make a huge difference in conversions.
Invalid or expired code recognition: Something as simple as dynamic error messaging that flags why a promotion has been rejected at checkout can ensure shoppers feel supported throughout the checkout stages.
Coupon reminders: For shoppers who may have forgotten about a discount or missed it in their journey to checkout.
Post-redemption communication: Support existing customers and send a post-redemption promotional email, on-site message, or referral.
Every promotion contains two key elements: the straightforward promotion engine that enables unique codes to be delivered to customers, and the experiential element that captures shoppers and guides them to purchase.
Promotion Experience Platforms like Uniqodo combine the two, delivering eye-catching promotions that are optimised for a streamlined customer journey.
With the right platform in place, you can get creative with developing promotions across multiple channels, including your website, social media and email accounts.
How the N Brown Group delivered personal customer experiences with Uniqodo⁹
Challenge: The fashion retailer N Brown Group wanted to attract new customers through engaging on-site promotions that could also be shared with affiliates.
Solution: By implementing Uniqodo’s single-use codes, N Brown was able to deliver secure promotions and gain in-depth campaign data.
Results: Because of the security and optimal delivery of the codes, the team was able to offer much higher discounts as part of a tactical coupon marketing strategy. They were also able to deliver personalised promotions for one of their subsidiary brands, Simply Be.
Tip 4: Test different approaches
Once you’ve designed your promotions, it’s time to run them and collect the resulting data. Avoid a scatter-gun approach. All of your promotions — whether in the form of blog posts, pop-ups, or marketing emails — should work together in a way that delivers personalised and unique customer experiences.
For example, you can take the approach of running promotions through the different stages of the sales funnel:
1. Navigation: Display promotions on main landing pages. Run a few different campaigns to discover the most effective triggers.
2. Product pages: Disappearing promotions or cross-selling pop-ups can be displayed on product pages to encourage additional sales, a technique especially beneficial during product launches.
3. Exit intent: If a user shows signs of leaving your site, display time-sensitive promotions that re-establish a sense of urgency.
You can either run all of these simultaneously or individually, depending on your promotions budget.
If you are able to run multiple campaigns at once, use the resulting data to perform eCommerce A/B testing and assess the effectiveness of different techniques.
How EE Mobile ran A/B testing to establish promotional impact
Challenge: EE Mobile wanted to assess how conversion rates differed between their classic promotion journey and an enhanced promotion experience.
Solution: Uniqodo embedded their enhanced promotions on a test group, split 50/50 with the control group. This meant half of the users were receiving an enhanced promotion experience, and the other half were engaging with a less streamlined promotion.
Results: The enhanced promotion experience saw fantastic results. This included:
23% uplift in revenue on all orders
19% uplift in conversion rates
As a result, the enhanced promotion was then rolled out across all student user groups.
Tip 5: Utilise attribution data
To ensure you are continually developing and improving your promotions and simultaneously boosting your search engine performance, it’s important to keep a close eye on the data coming out of your campaigns.
Single-use codes offer a critical advantage here, allowing you to attribute your promotion success to individual users.
This provides you with an overall campaign view and a customer view, so you can drill down into what’s working and what needs improving. If your promotions budget is limited, this might be a better choice than in-depth A/B testing.
Pro tip: Integrating attribution data with other marketing data, such as cart click-off rates and average session times, offers a holistic view of the effectiveness of your online sales promotion strategy.
Uniqodo offers 100% attribution accuracy, allowing for precise evaluation of your promotion strategies.
How Uniqodo helped Avis source and utilise data
Challenge: Avis Budget Group wanted to grow their customer base, build customer loyalty, and encourage people to subscribe to its email marketing channel. They needed to incentivise potential customers through engaging promotions and discounts.
Solution: Avis ran a social media campaign that linked to a seamless sign-up page. They also worked with Uniqodo and their partner email agency to deliver unique discount codes to those who had signed up.
Results: Avis was able to effectively grow the number of potential customers, with email address subscribers increasing by up to 24% in European countries. They were also able to capture more data about who their customers were and who was engaging with their promotions.
Boost your promotion performance with Uniqodo
The days of dull, impersonal coupon codes are over. The era of personalised, engaging and experiential promotions has begun.
For your promotion performance to improve, it’s imperative that you are delivering discounts at the right time to the right customers. Collect first-party data in the process and use this to fine-tune and optimise your future market strategy.
Uniqodo covers all these bases and more. Our unique Promotion Experience Platform offers unparalleled flexibility over coupon code delivery to streamline customer journeys and convert shoppers when it matters.
Uniqodo streamlines promotional experiences from acquisition to conversion, engagement and retention. Coupon codes should do much more than just offer a discount — they should shape customer experiences.
Book a discovery call with us today to find out how we can enhance your promotion performance.