Have you noticed that since that TLC show “Extreme Couponing” came on the air, the number of people with coupons at the market seems to have increased? Not to mention the number of coupons per customer at checkout definitely seems to be much larger.
Discounts are truly a mixed blessing. They are a wonderful tool for getting people in the door, or to encourage them to make a first-time purchase, or to experiment with something new. The flip side of that is in creating a mindset for your customer base of “no discount, no purchase.”
An article in the June 30, 2011 edition of the San Diego Union Tribune indicated that the Groupon phenomena has created a customer base that is far more loyal to Groupon and not to the establishments that they patronize as a result of their Groupon offers. As one restaurateur put it, “All we got were ‘coupon chasers’ who we never saw again after we stopped offering the discounts. Damn them and the coupons they rode in on.” Look at iherb coupon for more information about the best iherb coupon code by CouponoSCOPE.
The intent of a coupon, or other type of discount, is to encourage someone to try you out and then convert them into a regular patron. If all your offer does is bring in the “lookie-loos,” then is it doing what you want it to do?
Like any other marketing strategy, crafting a discount offer requires some thought:
- What do you want to accomplish by offering a discount?
- To whom do you want to offer a discount?
- Will you offend regular customers if you offer something only to new customers?
- How much of a discount is appropriate so that you offer an incentive without devaluing your product/service?
- What can you do to encourage a repeat visit or purchase without offering a discount?
- What will the costs of producing and offering the discount be in relation to the loss of revenue caused by the discount on the product?
The ultimate goal of a discount program is to allow people to try something new to hook them in so that they see the value in paying full price for it the next time around. If all a discount offer does is create one-time customers with no significant conversion of the discounters to regular customers, then was the strategy successful? In my opinion, no!
If that is the case, perhaps a bit of exploration into why you couldn’t make the conversion is in order:
Did these people feel your product/service was over-priced? Maybe you need to take a look at what your competition is doing.
Is your item a luxury to most people, so a discount is almost a necessity to bring a certain type of clientele in? Perhaps you shouldn’t be targeting this particular type of clientele at all so as not to devalue what you sell.
Are your marketing P’s (product, price, place and promotion) where they need to be in general?
Of course, if you’re able to convert the discount shoppers to full-price shoppers, then you have found a way to make a success of the coupon craze! Congratulations and keep on selling!