Do Coupon Codes Increase Conversion Rates?

You only have 15 seconds to capture the attention of your website visitors. Instead of letting the customer get frustrated with trying to locate your store coupons, or leave your website in search of coupons (where they may be enticed by a competitor), it’s better to have the coupons “find” them by being available in the right place, at the right time.

View from above a busy mall hallway during the Holidays

Using Coupons Effectively Along the Visitor’s Path on Your Ecommerce Website


By using banners or other inline content, you can turn first-time customers into email subscribers or social subscribers by enticing them with a coupon offer or a free shipping offer. You can also display the coupon in a header or footer that remains visible as the visitor scrolls up or down the page.

Product Page

When visitors are interested in an item, it’s a great time to upsell & cross-sell other products that are similar with a lightbox popup. You can encourage your visitor to not only add more items to their cart but also spend more money by displaying a prominent header in the lightbox that offers a big discount if their order exceeds a certain amount.

Cart Page

With the average shopping cart abandonment rate at about 75%, you should assume that your visitors are also potentially reviewing their cart and perhaps considering adding / removing some items or even abandoning altogether. Fortunately, you can increase your conversion rate by:

  • Offering first-time shoppers a discount or free shipping
  • Redisplaying a redeemed coupon on the checkout page
  • Displaying a popup lightbox with a coupon if the visitor abandons their cart or exits your site


Whether your visitor leaves the site without making a purchase or finishes their purchase and leaves happily, the selling cycle doesn’t stop there. Remarketing and email marketing works the best to entice customers back to your site. Not only does it keep you engaged with your shoppers, it also allows you to continue building a relationship and maintain brand awareness. Your campaigns should consist of offers such as:

  • Follow-up Discounts
  • Email/Newsletter Subscription Offer
  • Coupons & Gift Cards
  • New Sales
  • “Comeback!” Discount/Value
  • Abandoned Cart Email
  • Facebook Remarketing Ads (targeting people who abandoned their cart)

How Coupons Impact Conversion Rate and Influence People’s Decisions

According to MarketingProfs, 57% of US online shoppers who used a coupon code said that if they had not received the discount, they would not have bought the item(s).

Customers are actually more than receptive of digital coupons. According to the marketing blog, Amasty:

  • 68% of consumers believe that coupons build brand awareness
  • 60% of consumers love to receive digital coupons
  • 68% of consumers state coupons generate loyalty
  • 50% of consumers are more likely to visit a store if they have received a coupon

There are several different types of discounts and offers that you can employ, here are the most common:

  • Percentage Based Discount: 28% of shoppers are likely to spend more money if a retailer offers a percent off their total. Source: RetailMeNot. 17% if they offer specific product deals. Source: Retention Science
  • Dollar Value Discount: 30% of coupons users are most interested in deals that offer a specific dollar amount off of their purchase. Source: RetailMeNot
  • Free Gift

Since coupons can provide a trigger for a visitor to make a purchase, they can be utilized to increase conversions; especially if it makes the difference in whether a shopper has the ability to purchase an item or not. To create a coupon that is relevant and compelling, try implementing one or several of the following:

  • Weekly/Monthly Offers to Drive Sales and Meet Revenue Goals
  • Pre-launch offers
  • Holiday/Season Offers
  • Offers for Liking, Following or Sharing on Social
  • Referral Offers
  • Exclusive Social Offers
  • Customer Loyalty Offers

According to Robert Cialdini’s principle of scarcity, it’s normal social behavior for us to like things more when there are less of them to go around or they’re available only for a short time. Online retailers can take advantage of this by sending out messages that set a clear expiration date, create urgency and use compelling calls to action such as “Redeem Now,” and “Shop Today.”

Although a visitor may redeem a coupon, it doesn’t necessarily mean they will end up using it. The good news is that, if you captured their email, you can potentially turn that unused redemption into a lead by sending a reminder or recovery email to those shoppers. To make the most of these remarketing emails, connect the coupons to your email marketing service that that a drip email campaign is triggered to do the following:

  • Real-time: An email sent immediately when the coupon is redeemed. This email only needs to contain the coupon code, a link back to your site and a reminder of the expiration date.
  • 24 Hours: If the coupon is still unused, this will serve as a reminder email and is a good time to reiterate the value of the coupon and stress the urgency of a response with messages such as, “Today only,” “In the next 24 hours,” and “Exclusively for first-time visitors.”
  • 7 Days: If, after 7 days, the shopper still hasn’t returned to use their coupon code, this will serve as their third and final notice. If sending a few hours before the coupon is set to expire, it can also be a good idea to increase the offer or include an additional discount.

Ecommerce Coupon Statistics

According to Access Development, statistics reveal that coupons are still a driving force in commerce that connects people (and their wallets) to brands.

  • 93% of consumers consider special promotions as an influential reason for signing up for loyalty programs. Source: CFI Group
  • 55% of Millennials use their computers to look for coupons and discounts. Source: eMarketer
  • 55% of US internet users will redeem a digital coupon or code at least once per year. Source: eMarketer
  • 53% of adults living in high-income households (earning $200,000 a year or more) are willing to switch brands for the sake of using a coupon. Source: Business Wire
  • 78% of consumers are influenced to buy a brand they wouldn’t typically buy due to a coupon. Source: Valassis
  • More than 9/10 mobile coupon users will redeem a coupon or code via their mobile device for online or offline shopping in 2017. Source: eMarketer
  • 54% of consumers want personalized offers through SMS or app messages when close to a store. Source: Capgemini
  • 33% of Millennials, 25% of Generation Xers and 17% of Baby Boomers used mobile coupons in 2016. Source: PRRI
  • 57.4% of consumers claim they are more likely to buy a product from a retailer's site when the retailer emails them a discount code. Source: Cue Connect
  • 80% of participants signed up for email offers specifically to receive discounts. Source: PRRI


Keeping these tips in mind, you can successfully leverage the power of coupons to increase your conversion rate and turn visitors into customers. Offer the right coupon on the right page and at the right time, make visitors feel special, create a sense of urgency, collect email addresses and don’t forget to follow up. It’s that simple.

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