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Hackernoon logo4 Types of Discounts That Can Help Reduce The Impact of COVID-19 on Online Sales by@gracey

4 Types of Discounts That Can Help Reduce The Impact of COVID-19 on Online Sales

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Since the outbreak of the Coronavirus, or COVID-19 global pandemic, businesses have been seriously affected. In an unexpected crisis like this, the top worries for entrepreneurs include answers to questions like “how long is it going to last”? “How can my business sail through this period”? “How do I minimize the losses incurred during the period”? . Non-essential retailers especially will be looking out for ways to sell their products during the certain quarantine period that comes with such global pandemics.

This period will require online shop owners to quickly re-adjust their marketing strategies in order to get conversions, and even physical shops to consider online shops.

 In this article, I have curated a list of four types of woocommerce dynamic pricing discounts with examples that will help you sell more, gain new customers and navigate through this period cautiously.


When discounts are used properly they offer more advantages than disadvantages for the shop owner. It’s not just about creating a discount, but more about creating the right discount that will generate conversions especially during this critical period.

Increase sales: Naturally, a product will sell better if it is offered at a reasonably lower price because people are naturally attracted to such.

Attain goals: It also helps a business attain sales goals. Now is the time discounts become useful, to move stocks or to give some visibility to your brand, whichever goal you want to attain, the end result is to sell your products or services. 

Attracts new customers: as word spreads out of your discounts, it will attract both old and new customers. The more people you have, the more potential buyers you will have for other items on your online store. This can lead to other strategies you can benefit from, like customer loyalty, clearing old stock, or better brand awareness. 


Creating the wrong discount: a good example is discounting new products instead of old stock that could have been cleared. Your old stocks will remain there. That is why it is important to get your target right, message right and the right product to discount.

Killing your profit margins: You need the right strategy in place, to ensure that you do not end up operating at a loss. Not doing the right thing during this particular crisis, can really kill your revenue.  For example if you have a 30% gross margin and you cut your price by 15%, you will have to increase sales by 67% just to keep your starting profit margin. With the right woocommerce dynamic pricing discounts you can maximize your profits.

Conversion leading discounts 

Affiliate discounts: according to Wikipedia, affiliate marketing means rewarding one or more affiliates for each customer brought to their online shop by the affiliate's marketing efforts. That is how affiliate slides into the equation, to make the process easy for both parties. This strategy will help affiliates make some money during this period, while giving visibility to products people need and can’t purchase physically.

Implementing affiliate discounts can drive more customers to your online shop, and result in more sales. Conditional Discounts for Woocommerce is a plugin that can help you easily set-up this type of discount. Depending on the goal you want to achieve you can apply it on a product or cart subtotals. You can even go further by applying a percentage off, a fixed amount off the price, or a fixed price. 

If your affiliates do their job well, the discounts offered to potential customers can go a long way to generate conversions.

Example: You offer 20% discount off the price for product A if customer purchases through affiliate link A. This means that if the affiliate shares this opportunity with his/her followers, all those who go to the online shop through his/her affiliate link will get a discount. 

BOGO/ free gifts: everybody likes gifts, even if sometimes there is some doubt about the motive behind the offer. When it comes to business, offering gifts is a way of showing appreciation and valuing your customers. This strategy can help you stay afloat until the crisis passes away, it can be in a form of discount or bundling underperforming stock. The interesting fact about this method is that you can attract the attention of your target audience with the right offer. If you have been wondering about the types of gifts you can offer, here are a few: 

  • Buy one get one free
  • Gifts based on customer role
  • First-time order gift
  • Gifts based on cart items 
  • Nth orders gift

These are just a few we mentioned here, you can read more about the other types of Woocommerce gifts and BOGO deals here.

Example: Buy a pair of glasses and get one frame for free.

This is an example of a BOGO deal (Buy One Get One free). This discount states that if the customer buys one pair of glasses s/he will get a glasses frame for free. It is customary to give such a deal using another product that will be valuable to the customer, and that complements the initial item for sale. Therefore it is up to you to find the product in your shop you can give away and that will still be useful to the customer, which will motivate him to purchase from you. Because it is of no use to give for free something that won't be valuable to the customer. 

Free shipping: using this strategy can prove successful when used right! To reduce travelling and social contact, offering free shipping can motivate people to buy from any location while staying home and be delivered. For most customers, the one thing that discourages them from purchasing a product from your online shop is the shipping fee. Imagine losing a sale just because of the shipping fee? Not so good! But if you can identify those potential customers and the countries or states they want to be shipped, you can determine a way around the shipping fee and make that sale! But how? By creating a free gift discount targeting the shipping or billing country/state of your customer, to increase your revenues in that particular area.

Example: Get free shipping if a purchase is equal or more than 500$ and if the shipping state is California.  With this example the shop owner wants to get more revenues from California, therefore he makes it easier for customers to order from that specific state. 

First-time discount: People who really want to spend less during this period will grab this opportunity, and as a shop owner you should be able to use it to retain them. If you are looking for more chances to convert a first-timer into a customer, then you should look at this type of discount. Automatically applying a free gift discount to a customers first order can go a long way to turn him into a loyal customer. First impressions always count! Remember? That is why, at every step of your customer's journey with you, you need to find a way to keep them coming back. 

Example: first-time shoppers get a 50% off their cart subtotal.

This strategy shows that there is a special treat for every first-time visitor, and this will improve the sales rate if 3 over 5 visitors are converted. 

It's a wrap!

It takes a well-planned discount strategy to attain sales goals. In times like this, it is important to make the right decisions. Since every problem has a solution, all you need to do is study your business environment and see which ones work best for you. As mentioned earlier, you can find more woocommerce dynamic pricing discount strategies here

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