In our time, many retailers are marketing their goods and services through digital media. One of the most popular strategies used is printable coupons. Every year, millions of dollars are generated through redeemed online coupons. However, distributing coupons online presents various risks:
- Financial risk – Coupons which are meant for a specific audience might end up in the hands of individuals who don’t value them. This would make it difficult to predict redemption rates.
- Brand risk – Having your coupons online means that they are accessible to the general public. As a result, some people could capture and post them on inappropriate sites. This might end up having a negative effect on your brand reputation.
- Loyalty risk – If your special offers are accessible easily online, some people might not see the sense of signing up for your loyalty programs.
Therefore, if not properly implemented, printable coupon marketing can end up having an adverse effect on your business. Here are some tips which will help you lower potential risks when using online coupons:
1. Don’t display the full coupon
If a full coupon appears on the computer screen, unscrupulous individuals can easily capture and manipulate it. Therefore, make sure your coupon appears only partially. The full coupon should only be visible on paper after printing.
2. Watermark the coupon
It is usually a good idea to place a complex watermark on your coupon. This will make it very difficult for anyone to manipulate it. You can create watermarks fast and easily using online tools such as PicMark, Watermark.ws and PicMarkr. You can also use downloadable software like Alamoon Watermark, TSR Watermark and uMark or photo editors such as Photoshop, Pixelmator and Gimp.
3. Personalize it
You could consider personalizing your coupon by printing the name and email address of the consumer on it. This not only curtails fraud, but also helps to generate more interest among your target market. Adding a personal touch to your coupons is therefore a great way of improving customers’ shopping experience, thus enhancing your conversion rates.
4. Monitor traffic
It is very important to keep track of your sources of printable coupon traffic. Find out how much of the traffic is coming from social media, coupon sites or your email list. This will enable you to figure out what is working and what is not. It would then be advisable to focus your efforts on the channels which are most viable.
5. Place a barcode on the coupon
Having a promo code or barcode on your coupon is one of the best ways of deterring fraudsters. There are several technologies out there which can help you create tracking barcodes for your coupons. This will not only keep you safe, but will also enable you to capture the customer’s personal data.
6. Take advantage of your email list
Your email list can be very valuable for your business. Once in a while, take time to update your list on your latest offers. This will create community and result in higher redemption rates.
7. Make signing up easy
Many people don’t like filling long forms with numerous fields. Therefore, you need to make registration on your site as easy as possible. In most cases, a name and email address should suffice. A simple and user-friendly signup process is likely to enhance your conversion rates.
There is no foolproof way of protecting your online coupons from all the associated risks. However, applying the above-mentioned tips will make you less vulnerable, thus enhancing your chances of success.