These 2018 Promo Code Statistics Show Why They’re a Must-Have For E-Tailers

Today, lots of online retailers are getting more conversions by using promo codes.

And it makes sense when you think about it: customers love customized promotions and receiving promo codes is a fantastic way to promote engagement, drive larger orders, and keep shoppers coming back to your store.

In recent years, the popularity of digital coupons has helped services like Retail Me Not become multi-million dollar providers of one thing: promo codes.

As it stands in the world of ecommerce now, the popularity of promo codes factors into any successful ecommerce marketing strategy.

Here’s a quick overview of 2018 promo code statistics. This information will help you better understand how popular and effective this type of ecommerce marketing strategy is.

2018 Promo Code Statistics

Wondering how popular promo codes are? Here are some recent statistics to help you see the light:

  • More than 25 million Americans currently use mobile couponing apps each month
  • Back in 2014, people redeemed 16 billion digital coupons, although this number is projected to jump to 31 billion by 2019
  • More than 560 million people have already used online coupons, and that number will exceed 1.05 billion by 2019
  • About 57%-59% of the U.S. population is or has redeemed online coupons
  • More than 48% of companies use coupons to market to consumers
  • Coupons can help build brand awareness, boost customer loyalty, and increase the likelihood of future visits and conversions
  • 68% of customers report that coupons build brand awareness
  • 60% of customers say they love getting digital coupons
  • 50% of customers say they’re more likely to visit a store if they’ve received a coupon from that store
  • 62% of smartphone users say they’re likely to use an ecommerce coupon in the near future
  • 55% of smartphone users rely on their phones to find coupons before they make a purchase
  • 18% of global customers use mobile coupons or apps while they shop in stores

Using Promo Codes in Marketing

So, you know you want to use promo codes, but you’re not sure where to start. Here are a few things to know as you work to introduce promo codes into your ecommerce marketing strategy:

When to Use Promo Codes

There are a few key reasons marketers reach for promo codes. These are as follows:

  1. To hit sales targets
  2. To gain new customers
  3. To move surplus inventory

While there are dozens of other applicable reasons to use coupons, these three are the most common. Sellers can also use promo codes to decrease cart abandonment rates, encourage customers to purchase the items they’ve left behind in their carts, and reward loyal customers.

Aside from all of that, coupon codes can also be used to encourage new customers to give over their email address in exchange for a discount or promotion.

How to Use Promo Codes

Once you’ve decided how and when to incorporate promo codes into your overall ecommerce marketing strategy, it’s time to start considering how to use them. There are some definite “dos” and “don’ts” when it comes to this.

Here’s a list to get you started:


  • Make codes easy to use: The easier a code is to remember, apply, and calculate, the higher your utilization rates will be.
  • Test your codes: Testing codes before you deploy them allows you to weed out coupons that won’t work and save your customers an immensely frustrating experience.
  • Rotate your coupons: If you’ve not tried a rotation strategy with your coupons, now is time to do it. Offer exclusives to discount sites for about a week or two at a time, and then rotate over to other sites. It’s a great way to keep things fresh and ensure you’re providing as much value as possible for customers.


  • Deploy codes without a strategy: This approach is too “red ocean,” and won’t work to capture the users you want. Instead, you’ve got to take an intelligent approach to your various coupon codes. For example, you might consider matching the codes to paydays, the first and last weekends of the month, or holidays.
  • Stretch yourself too thin: While coupon codes can be a smart addition to your ecommerce marketing strategy, you don’t want to make the discount so large that you lose money.
  • Neglect the CTA: As is true with any marketing tactic, your promo codes are only as strong as your CTA.

How to Track & Measure Your Promo Codes

The final step in deploying successful promo codes is understanding how to track and measure them. If you skip this step, you’ll never know where your codes are performing and where they could stand some improvement. You’ll also never be able to adjust your strategy accordingly.

With this in mind, it’s essential to track and measure accordingly. How you do this depends on what you’re using to push your coupons. Companies like Wordpress, Squarespace, and Shopify all have plugins and apps that allow you to create and track promo codes. If you use a CMS or CRM, you likely also have access to a tool that will help you do this.

No matter how you decide to track your codes, keep in mind that it’s essential that you do track them. This is the only way to improve your strategy over time and keep your promo codes working for you.

Why Promo Codes Work

While the modern ecommerce marketing strategy takes many approaches into account, promo codes are some of the most important. By utilizing them accordingly, you can save yourself the time, effort, and expense associated with pursuing other, less effective tactics, and ensure that you’re providing the value your customers want.

Ideal for a whole host of marketing objectives, including obtaining new customers and keeping your existing customers around, promo codes are the ultimate multi-tool in the world of ecommerce marketing, and their usefulness shows no signs of slowing down any time soon!

Want even more info? We’ve got you covered with this detailed infographic that includes pertinent promo code statistics for 2018 as well as some handy future predictions for 2019.

statistics on promo codes for 2018

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