I was recently asked twice in the same month by two clients: “How do we go about adding discounts to our onine shop?”
It’s one of those interesting question that seems simple on the surface but once you think about you realise there is more than meets the eye. I believe it can be summarised thus:
Type of discount
As I see it, there are two types of discount: automatic and code-based discount.
1. Automatic means the discount kicks in automatically (i.e. no code is entered)
2. Code-based discount would be where you have to enter a code and, if valid, applies a discount at the checkout
The discount would only be valid if certain criteria are met:
1. £x are spent
2. n threshold is equaled or exceeded — where n can be weight of product, number of products, etc
3. A certain product, or combination of products, are purchased
The actual discount
1. % off total (e.g. 10% off)
2. Fixed price off the total (e.g. £25 off)
3. Free product(s) (e.g. free dust cloth when you buy a LCD TV)
1. Runs indefinitely or within a specific time frame
2. Is one-time use only or can be used by anyone
1. Can automatic and code-based discounts be used together? (probably not unless you’re feeling generous!)
2. Can customers enter more than one code (I advise against this as it can get complicated — and see previous point)
3. Does the discount apply to delivery (you only need to consider this if you discount a percentage or a fixed price, not if you give a free product away)?
You should find that if you can’t set a discount up by running through the above options, it’s probably too complicated to implement.
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