8 sales promotion ideas you need to steal

8 sales promotion ideas you need to steal


Stand-out sales promotion ideas change the game for consumer-facing businesses. You, like any business, are locked in the endless struggle to secure fresh sales. No matter what else you do as a business, you’ll eventually live and die on actually making some sales.

Almost nothing is so good it sells itself. Which is why sales is a whole industry and specialisation. And, consumers are more apathetic and jaded than ever about embracing new things. Eye-catching sales promotional capture customer attention and interest, making more likely to make purchases.

8 sales promotion ideas you should consider


Broadly speaking, rewards work. It’s our speciality. They delight and they demand action. Attaching a voucher, gift card or digital reward to your products makes them just a bit more attractive when the customer is weighing their options or deciding whether to make a purchase.

Loyalty rewards

Customers that stick around deserve to be shown some love. You can make these schemes informal and simple or do something more robust. It could be a simple stamped card after every purchase, a store card that gives them a discount at the till, or full points-banking system that tracks purchases.

Bulk and combination discounts

As a tried and tested customer acquisition technique, it works. Assemble complimentary items and offer them at a discount when combined. Or, offer a sliding scale of discounts for customers placing the big orders. It’s not complicated or wildly imaginative, but it does work. For instance, we often find that our Love2shop Engagement Platform partners brilliantly with our discount gift card schemes.

On-pack promotions

Catch the eye of customers when your product is on the supermarket shelf. Offer a modest reward for every sale, or dangle a really big prize like a holiday or big-ticket electronics. These prizes can be mailed out on purchase confirmation or distributed digitally. A swell of sales promotion ideas hinge on offering something of greater financial value to the customer, they’re a very effective approach.

Influencers and referrals

If you have fans, make use of them. Do some research and find out if any of your customers have an influential online presence and strike a deal for your brand to feature in their sphere of influence. Alternatively, offer a reward for any customer that uses their social group to pull in more new customers.

Buy-backs and trade ins

We’re rapidly approaching an era when companies are going to be asked to take more responsibility for what happens to their products after they’re sold. A buy-back scheme lets you address that concern while generating a reason for customers to make their next purchase with you.

When you buy-back your products, you can apply a discount to their next purchase. Similar to how video game retailers operate a trade-in system – you’ll naturally always be more generous with the store credit than the cash. For a sales promotion idea it combines ethical behaviour with a tangible reward to your customer.

You can also then control what happens to your products when you’re done with them. Recycle them or refurbish and resell them.

Financing and credit

Up-front prices can be deal-breaker when closing a sale. Offering finance deals to customers with reasonable credit makes it much more likely they’ll entertain a sale.

Alternatively, if you’re working with a trade audience, credit is a game-changing difference. Dealing with 30 to 90-day payment terms while securing materials for a job can cripple trade customers. Credit for trusted clients secures sales, and secures their business in the future.

Trial periods

Companies like Leesa Mattresses, for instance, offer guarantees of refunds after a trial of their products. It takes the sting out of committing to the purchase by offering the customer an escape hatch. If your products are high quality and meet the needs of your audience, very few will be sent back.

Flash sales and time-limited deals

Urgency is a common way to promote action. Create discounts and deals that are only available in a limited period to create a sense that the purchase has to happen now. These time-specific events prey on our fear of missing out on a great deal, creating an internal pressure to grab the bargain while it’s available.

Time-sensitive checkout discounts

Urgency combats cart abandons. A lot of online retailers notice their users often abandon carts just when they’re about to checkout. This idea offers them a time-sensitive discount on individual products in the basket, or the entire basket, as long as they check out within an hour. Or half an hour. Whatever you deem appropriate.

Ultimately the key to making sales promotion ideas work is getting over the natural apathy of your audience. Attention, getting it and keeping it, has become a currency in its own right. Whatever method you choose to rope in a few more sales, consider your audience’s urgencies. Tap into their emotions and their priorities and focus on inspiring them to act.

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