Today's customers are savvy, and they are very well aware of how to capitalize on offers and coupons provided by brands. 63% of online buyers say that they want coupons to be more accessible. Though it is more beneficial to customers, e-marketers can also use it to make profitable sales.
Global e-marketers have increased digital coupon distribution by 27% to keep up with the shift of consumers to online mobile shopping, adding a 47% increase in digital coupon redemption.
eCommerce brands have been actively searching for better methods to gain maximum customer acquisition. In this scenario, coupon marketing can be their best option. Additionally, using coupon marketing in the right way can bring better revenue to eCommerce businesses. While digital coupon discounts are benefiting online buyers, they can also be helpful to improve sales via referral customer acquisitions.
Hence let us learn about how eCommerce brands can use coupon marketing to enhance referral customer acquisitions.
Analyzing the eCommerce customer landscape
The eCommerce customer landscape has been shifting with the increasing number of alternatives and competition in the industry. Today customers have a wide range of brand options to purchase their products from. Hence retaining them with one brand is quite tricky. Moreover, rival businesses keep on bringing different strategies to boost eCommerce customer acquisitions.
Effective marketing strategies help you retain customers and acquire more, and coupon marketing is one of these strategies. Additionally, coupon marketing is a way to provide robust customer service; Coupon marketing allows your customers to buy commodities at a discounted price. Also, customers love it when they can save some money by applying coupon code discounts while making online purchases. Hence, they tend to buy more products.
Moreover, data from Microsoft demonstrates that for 95% of buyers, customer service is vital for brand loyalty.
Let us look at some statistics on the role of coupon marketing in assisting eCommerce brands in keeping up with evolving eCommerce customer landscape and retaining maximum customer acquisition:
- As per a report by Shopify, marketers who consistently offer discount codes to their customers are 8x more likely to sell their products than those who don't.
- Nearly 67% of customers are making an anticipated buy after they receive a discount on the product.
- Aside from satisfying your existing customers, offering coupons and discounts is the key to bringing in new customers. 80% of new buyers tend to get swayed by targeted coupons or discount offers on products.
How can referrals help customer acquisition?
Referrals help your business stand out from the rest of the competition in the industry, given that you have to do it effectively. As per studies, customers sourced through referrals have a retention rate of 37% more than non-referral customers. Also, 81% of customers are likely to interact with brands that offer rewards.
Moving ahead, here’s how referrals help customer acquisition:
1. By building a network of referrals:
Referrals tend to get viral among the consumer base. When an individual buys products or services from your eCommerce business, their interaction and experience with your service make their opinion on your brand. If they had a positive experience, they are more likely to share about your brand with their contacts.
Also, you can ask them to provide their testimonial and, with their permission, circulate it on all your social media handles. Further, if the other person receives a good user experience, they will refer your brand to their contacts.
Hence, this way, your existing referrals will help you build a network of unofficial salespersons for your brand. These kinds of personal referrals have been proven to earn the most value. Around 84% of people think personalized recommendations are the most trusted way of promoting a brand.
2. More sales with increased engagement
An increase in the engagement of customers with your brand can boost your conversion rates. The consumers who refer their contacts to your products tend to visit your eCommerce website more often to claim rewards. Also, it increases the chance of them buying some new products from your site. 50% of individuals are likely to visit an online store if they receive a coupon.
This way, referrals help maintain good traffic at your site and retain a consistent number of customers for possible future purchases.
3. By identifying and discovering target customers
Customers like to stay where they are being appreciated. Referrals help you identify loyal and engaged customers and enable you to improve their customer experience via personalized campaigns.
Moreover, by offering a personalized experience, you can fetch valuable data on present market trends and your target customers' needs. With this data, you can make improvements to fulfill your customers' needs.
4. By boosting brand awareness and improving reputation
Referrals help potential customers to learn about your brand's background and improve its overall reputation. Today's customers are more attracted to brands with a positive influence and strong voice. 86% of shoppers prefer a more honest and authentic brand. When your customers tell your brand story, such referrals resonate intimately with the general consumer base.
Studies by Google and Ogilvy suggest that word-of-mouth referrals highly influence 74% of total customers.
5. Referral contest campaigns help attract more customers
Referral marketing allows you to set up contests such as refer-a-friend-campaign. This strategy works best when you are offering a high-value reward in return for your customers engaging their contacts with your brand. For example, you can offer smartphones, the latest gadgets, free tickets to upcoming concerts, etc.
To make this more successful, you should provide secondary prizes to your customers who couldn't make it to the big value reward, offer them gift cards, discounts, etc. To avail, the secondary rewards ask them to refer this campaign to 10-20 unique contacts within a limited period. This way, your campaign will come into the sight of much more potential customers and boost engagement.
How can coupon marketing improve customer acquisition?
Coupon marketing is one of the best ways to improve customer acquisition for any eCommerce business. As per data, by 2022, digital coupon redemption will cross a revenue of 90 billion dollars. Also, currently, around 90% of digital consumers use coupons while making purchases.
Hence, here are some ways companies use coupon marketing for customer acquisition:
1. Offering limited-time coupon
In this coupon marketing strategy, marketers tend to create a sense of urgency among their existing and potential consumer base. Offering the most sought-after products or services at a discounted price for a limited period triggers customers to act quickly.
The urgency principle is one of the most effective psychological methods marketers use to bring in more visitors and convert them into buyers. For this, you need to add an expiry date on the coupon or notify your customers that a particular discount is accessible till pre-defined hour counts or days.
The goal of a limited-time coupon offer is to make customers decide right away by limiting their access to offers. Studies suggest that digital consumers, especially those between 25 to 40, are more likely to opt for limited-time offers; around 50% agree that they are more drawn to such offers.
2. Streamlining repeated purchases
Coupon marketing offers businesses the privilege to enjoy repeated buying from their existing consumer base. Usually, marketers send emails that contain coupon codes with attractive discounts to their customers for their next purchase. Most online buyers get the feeling of losing money when they don't use the coupon. Data says that emails with a coupon link drive a 48% increase in profit per email.
3. Customer acquisition with strategic offers and deals
Traditionally, businesses offer dollar and percentage amounts as popular discount strategies. However, the discount amount should depend upon the financial ability of the respective eCommerce marketer. Hence to make a perfect strategy for deals and offers, you need to survey your audience to get better insights.
Nearly 86% of online buyers like being a part of the surveys for businesses if their suggestions get follow-ups and bring convenience to them.
Here are the following offers you can provide your customers:
- Free shipping
- Freebies with product purchase
- Contests that offer giveaways
- Rewards for sharing brand referrals
However, keep in mind that your consumers' references might shift over time with changing trends, requirements, etc. This is why experimenting with different discounts, and offer strategies is beneficial.
4. Gain customer loyalty with reward programs
Coupon marketing allows you to start reward programs for your business. Reward programs let your customers win exclusive offers and save a considerable amount of money if they consistently buy products from your store. The longer your consumer base stays loyal to your business, the higher revenue you will generate. Moreover, around 84% of consumers agree that they are loyal to online stores that run reward programs.
Through reward programs, you can add extra perks for your customers. For example, when they hit a defined milestone, offer them free products like sending a good quality free product to your customers when they've been consistently buying from you for one whole year.
5. Attractive discounts exclusively for new customers
Customer acquisition can be challenging if you don't have an appealing strategy that compels them to call for action. One of the ways to achieve this is by offering rewards in the form of promotions or discounts. To make new customers sign up for your website, you need to provide them with a free trial period or a high-value discount percentage. This way, customers can review your products without any risk of losing money. A money-back guarantee also is a great way to bring in new consumers to try out your products.
Hence, once your customers finish their free trial period, you can boost your success by making them curious about your best products. For example, send them new product recommendations that have attractive coupon discounts linked to them, etc.
6. Create coupons that speak to your regional and local markets
The modern consumer base prefers personalized communication from brands they buy products from. Hence customizing coupon offers as per your consumers' preferences will encourage them to make more purchases through your website. Moreover, the personalization of coupons decreases expenses for customer acquisition by half. Plus, it also increases revenues by 15% and marketing productivity up to 30%. These estimations are from the data obtained by McKinsey.
Hence marketers must take advantage of customization as per regional and local opportunities. Coupon marketing can be done based on local language, occasions, location, and many other aspects.
Using coupons for driving referrals
Another effective way to draw in customers to purchase your product or services is the coupon referral program. In this coupon marketing strategy, you need to enable your customers to gain attractive coupon rewards for numerous activities they perform for your brand promotion.
For example, you can ask them to share product coupon referral links through emails or on their social networking channels. This way, your existing customers will earn considerable coupon discounts when they bring in more customers to your brand using your coupon referral program.
By using your coupon discounts, either they purchase the product for themselves or give their coupon to someone in their contacts who they think will need it. This way, coupon marketing does both: drive more sales and draws in new customers.
As per a study by the Market Force, 81% of online consumers in the US have their purchase decisions influenced by social media posts of their friends.
Moreover, you can create a custom QR code coupon that displays a summary of your business on a desktop as well as a mobile-optimized page. It takes your customers to the linked content on the QR code that you want them to see. Hence combining QR codes and coupon marketing is the best way to promote your business and drive referrals.
Further, using coupon preference also provides two significant benefits to e-marketers:
Assist in providing excellent customer experience: Coupon referral programs allow customers to be part of the earning party. They don't just buy products. They also make the most of their purchasing experience by referring to their friends in return for better offers.
Enhancing brand loyalty: It's human nature to return to a place where they get more benefits. Hence, with rewarding coupons, customers tend to come back to the same brand repeatedly to avail better offers.
Coupon marketing is an effective technique to increase sales. Highlight your coupons you've shared via social media by adding an Instagram feed plugin to your website. The old tactic of enticing customers inspires it by offering them some good deals on products. This method is very effective.
It can make people who have not even heard of the brand check its website because of the attractive discount. Coupon marketing focuses on consumers' interest in saving as much money as possible on purchases. Offering your products or services to consumers at a lower rate than the regular price can drastically influence sales, consumer satisfaction, and loyalty to your brand.
Akshay is a digital marketing and startup enthusiast exploring the myriad avenues of everything marketing. At Beaconstac, he enables businesses to bridge their gap between the digital and offline worlds through custom QR codes.