How to Guarantee Coupon Security: 4 Tactics

Jul 10, 2019
Julian Bachiller
Software Engineer
Min to read

Did you know that more than 80% of millennials use coupons while shopping online?

Coupons are an incredibly powerful digital marketing strategy, but are you doing them right?

Coupons can easily fall victim to fraud, insecure validation or lead to major revenue loss if implemented incorrectly.

Here are 4 fantastic tactics to guarantee coupon code security:

  1. Secure coupon validation
  2. Implement redemption limits
  3. Secure code structure
  4. Timeframe and expiration

More targeted coupon campaigns will be a great addition to your digital marketing strategy this year, but be sure to keep these security measures in mind if you want to save on your promotion costs.

With a powerful coupon engine in place, you can avoid abuse before it negatively impacts your business.

More than 70% of US internet users said their purchases were influenced by coupons and discounts. -eMarketer
Computer screen with code

1. Secure coupon validation

The example: Give a 5€ coupon to customers who clicked a Facebook link (including UTM parameters), valid when they have a total cart value of 50€.

  • The coupon rules in place here include user profile information, UTM parameters and cart value.
  • The coupon is only valid for customers who fulfil all of these conditions.
  • If your promotion solution doesn't validate rules correctly, you could lose a lot of money.
  • Ensure your promotion solution can create a secure coupon code and deliver the right reward to the right person.

2. Implement redemption limits

The example: You want to to give new customers who sign up for your newsletter a special coupon code valid for free shipping on the next order.

  • Limits to consider: Redemption limits, customer limits and campaign limits.
  • Limit the number of redemptions possible for individual coupon code (so customers don't send to all their friends).
  • Define how many times a customer can redeem a code based on something unique like a customer profile ID or email (typically one per customer).
  • Set a total cap for the campaign to control how many codes are distributed (can be unlimited).

3. Secure code structure

The example: You want to reward customers for their 10th purchase on your website with a 20€ code to use for their next purchase over 100€.

  • A secure code length is between 4 and 20 characters long to prohibit someone guessing the code.
  • Sadly there are some people (and programs) who try to guess codes.
  • Customize your code using a set of numbers, letters, or a mix of both. Either way, have the right code validation in place for optimal security.

If you are using Talon.One, our coupon settings calculate the chances of someone guessing your code to maximize code security.

4. Timeframe and expiration

The example: You run a promotion giving customers 50% off their next purchase if they use the code SUMMER-2017 within the next 72hours.

  • Always set the exact start date, expiration date and expiration time of your coupon code.
  • Never let customers redeem the code over and over for the entire summer (that would be embarrassing and a huge loss of revenue).
  • If you issue invalid or expired codes, this will lead to major customer dissatisfaction and problems for your customer support.

No matter the industry you're in, there is no doubt that coupons are an effective promotion marketing tactic.

In 2014, it was estimated that 16 billion eCoupons were used and projections show that an estimated 31 billion eCoupons will be used in 2019 -Invesp

When you were a kid, did you ever make special coupons for a "One Free Breakfast" and give them to your parents?

Only problem is you aren't five anymore and your business has thousands of customers waiting for coupons and discounts. And they don't find you as cute as they used to.

But of course don't let that stop you! With a proper solution for creating, managing and tracking your coupons, you can avoid issues with code validation, fraud, wasted revenue and resources.

Make it your top priority to have logical checks in place that ensure all your rewards are carried out effectively and avoid wasting your promotional budget.

What's your experience with coupons? Do you have any questions about coupon code security? Get in touch or let us know your experience or just book a demo finally and see for yourself what all the fuss is about.

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Best Practices for loyalty programs
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