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CASE STUDY
How Pomelo attracted thousands of customers with personalized coupons?

How to ensure a fantastic coupon validation experience?

How to keep your coupon offers safe? And how to make sure that shoppers won’t get annoyed with the overly-complicated coupon validation process? Everything you need to know to build a smooth and secure coupon verification process.

How to ensure a fantastic coupon validation experience?

Striking a balance between coupon security and a user-friendly validation process is not a matter of blind luck. It results from tireless A/B tests, a bit of UX practice, and hard customer data. When designing a coupon validation process, you need to consider both customers’ and your business’ interests. Customers want a quick and easy way to redeem coupon codes. The less complicated the validation process is, the better. But what your business needs is quite different. Personalized discount restriction rules, a secure code length, and time-based validity limits. To name a few.

With this post, I want to offer you my top tips on how to combine coupon security and a smooth validation process into an unstoppable discounting machine.

Ensure a secure and user-friendly coupon structure

Before you build the coupon validation process, you first need to generate the coupon codes. Promo codes are nothing more than a unique series of numbers, letters, or both. Unique promo codes are an excellent tool for improved marketing personalization, affiliate sales management, and you guessed it right, coupon fraud prevention.

The key to generating hard-to-guess coupon codes is a large set of possible codes. But making only a small fraction of them valid. You can build a coupon generation tool yourself or use a promotion engine to help you with this task. We also offer a coupon generator for free.

Once you come up with a way to generate un-guessable codes, you should make them user-friendly too. These tips will help you improve the customer experience, without too much development work required.

  • Not too long, not too short – the perfect length of a coupon code is between 8-12 characters long.
  • Is it 0 or O? – avoid ambiguous characters and exclude them from the character set. 
  • Cut the coupon into pieces – divide the codes into smaller parts to simplify the validation process. 

These steps may seem inconsequential, but they add up to the overall coupon validation process and customer satisfaction in the long run. 

It is also essential to remember about branding and seasonality. Codes connected to your brand or a special occasion are more engaging to customers than a random string of numbers and letters. For example, the validation of the LOVEINTHEAIR345 code for a Valentine’s Day discount will be easier than XYZ-123-VGH.

Generate coupons compatible with any device and format

Cross-channel marketing uses different offline and online channels to reach customers. The purpose of using different customer touchpoints is to achieve the best possible sales result. The integration of marketing channels brings better results than launching disconnected offers for different mediums.

Coupon validation through multiple touchpoints

Your coupon codes should come in all possible forms – text, barcode, QR, mobile, and even print. The wide variety of coupon formats translates into many validation and redemptions points. You can think here about mobile apps, online checkouts, or brick-and-mortar shops. Then, customers can validate and redeem codes in any way they want. They can use a mobile app, scan a QR code in the physical store, or type in the code in the online checkout form.

Consider coupon interoperability

Let's assume that your codes are now redeemable via many touchpoints. Why not go one step ahead? You should go beyond your network and offer redemptions in partner stores. Some time ago, coupon interoperability between different retailers was unthinkable, let alone doable. Various technical and business standards made this kind of partnership impossible. But, here we are several years later. The shifting retail market now runs on omnichannel marketing strategies and mobile-first experiences. New technical coupon solutions made cross-retailers coupon validation and redemption possible and desirable.

APIs are the leading force in headless commerce and multichannel marketing tactics. With many POS integrated with a single API coupon validator, you can quickly model interoperable coupons. To make such a workflow successful, you will also need a coupon management software to track coupon status and redemptions.

Ensure lighting-fast coupon validation

API is also a fantastic tool for making your coupon validation and redemption process fast. For instance, with Voucherify validation API, you can quickly:

  • Check if the coupon comes from a Voucherify campaign. 
  • Verify whether the coupon is not expired or disabled. 
  • Check if it matches the redemption rules (e.g., if the order contains product X).
Coupon validation API

To make this process even faster, you can use a redemption API straight away. Redemption API will validate the coupon, perform the redemption, and mark the code as used instantaneously.

If you are new to the concept of a coupon API, this post is for you. 

 Streamline the checkout process

Suppose you are interested in using digital coupon codes for your business. In that case, there are several tips that you can implement today to make the coupon validation and redemption process a breeze. 

  • Make sure that customers can easily copy and paste coupon codes. Never force them to type in the promo codes manually. 
  • If you are running other digital promotions in your store, make sure it shows. Display promotional banners on your landing page and make sure to remind customers about their codes at the checkout. 
  • Incorporate dynamic price widgets in your store to show how much money customers can save on their orders if they apply the coupon code. 
  • Ensure that only qualified customers receive relevant coupon codes to mitigate the risk of unauthorized customers trying to redeem the codes, clogging up your system. 

Monitor failed discount code validation and redemption attempts

Even the most elaborate coupon validation process can sometimes fail. Short activity window, issues with recognizing a customer, or harsh budgetary limits can block eligible customers from redeeming coupon codes. Your team should be notified in real-time about unsuccessful redemptions to get in touch with qualified customers who got unlucky or find users trying to game the system.

How does an excellent coupon validation system work?

The nightmarish stories of coupons going viral keeps marketers awake at night. We all heard stories of wasted marketing budgets on promotions that turned into painful and costly experiences. It’s no wonder that many retailers abandoned running promotions altogether.

Each business follows different rules and patterns. The fundamental problem with coupon codes is a quick and affordable way to authenticate coupons at the point of sale (online or offline). Coming up with a complicated authentication process and hard-to-code ecommerce integrations defeat the purpose of running promotions – driving steady profits. This is where coupon management systems, such as Voucherify, come into play.

Validation Process in Voucherify

With Voucherify, each coupon code is attached to a specific promotional offer (campaign). Your codes can carry particular parameters such as redemption limits, an expiration date, or eligibility rules (e.g., only customers from Denmark can redeem the code). When the customer tries to redeem the coupon code via a connected check-out form, the validation or redemption request is sent to the Voucherify database to check whether the coupon code can be applied. When a coupon is redeemed, it is marked as used. If another user tries to redeem the same code, the code is not redeemable anymore. This way, customers are forced to use coupons in an intended way – once per user (in most cases). They also cannot distribute the codes to other customers and different redemption touchpoints.

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