For Business

Use promotions to attract and retain more shoppers

Best practices for using Buy with Prime promotions to engage Prime members on your ecommerce site.


Deals and discounts are a great way to attract new shoppers and build customer loyalty. In the post-pandemic, high-inflation era, promotional discounts are a way to engage cost-conscious shoppers.

According to a RetailMeNot survey, about two-thirds of consumers have made a purchase they hadn’t originally planned for because they found a coupon or discount, and 80% said they felt encouraged to make a first-time purchase with a new brand because an offer or discount was available.

Throughout the pandemic, consumers flocked to online stores—a boon for ecommerce businesses. Research from Digital Commerce 360 suggests that the pandemic boosted ecommerce sales in the US by more than $218 billion from 2020 to 2021. With a compelling promotional marketing strategy, online brands like yours can tap into a new generation of online shoppers.

Consumer preference for deals, coupled with the growth of ecommerce, highlight how setting up promotions can be critical to helping you achieve your business goals.

Common business goals

Goal 1: New customer acquisition and build brand awareness
You can use coupon code promotions to entice shoppers to visit your online store. This can be done by either featuring the coupon code in an ad or creating unique codes for influencers or other partners that you’re working with. Unique codes are a great way to track the success of a particular advertising channel, promotional campaign, or partnership.

Goal 2: Spotlight new products
Promotional codes can be used to encourage shoppers or existing customers to try one of your new products. Because it can take time to gain traction on and build up reviews for a new product on your site, promotions can be used to bridge the gap, allowing shoppers to try out the product at a discount. Promotional discounts can be used as an incentive for shoppers to give products from a new brand a try.

Goal 3: Encourage repeat purchases and retain customers
Once you acquire a customer’s email address, you can build a direct relationship through remarketing engagement emails. There are several ways to acquire customer information from your ecommerce site, two of which include: 1) when a shopper places an order, and 2) if a shopper signs up for your newsletter or mailing list. To encourage shoppers to sign up for your newsletter or mailing list, you can offer a promotional code that activates after they validate their email address. For example: A shopper submits their email address on your site and then have to validate it in an automated email they receive.

Goal 4: Inventory clear-out
Promotions are a great way to sell products with excess stock, especially when you have additional inventory after a big campaign or peak shopping season such as the holidays. Running a promotion on overstock inventory not only helps drive more sales, but also helps reduce inventory storage costs.

Benefits of Buy with Prime promotions

Buy with Prime promotions can help you achieve your business goals by engaging Prime members on your site. Shoppers have different expectations when it comes to deals and discounts, but there are two key types of promotional experiences Prime members will love, including:

  • Inclusivity: Because Buy with Prime promotions are managed independently, you can duplicate any non-Buy with Prime promotions within merchant console to ensure all shoppers get a consistent experience on your site. This way, orders through Buy with Prime and those through your native checkout offer the same promotional advantages to your shoppers.
  • Exclusivity: Make Prime members feel special by creating Buy with Prime-specific promotions within merchant console. Create a Buy with Prime collection page featuring a promotion on eligible items. This page makes it easy for Prime members to shop on your site and get the fast, free shipping they’ve come to expect.

6 tips for running promotions

Brands use a variety of tactics to use discounts and deals to engage shoppers, and below are six tips that can help you build an effective promotional strategy for your ecommerce business:

  1. Brand relevancy: Select the type of promotion that works well for your business, such as a dollar discount or a percentage discount. It’s important to consider your customer preferences and your product set when setting up promotions. Reviewing past promotion sales information can help you identify the right type of promotion to run.
  2. Context is key: To make the promotion more impactful, it’s important to consider the season. For instance, summer and holiday campaigns come with different consumer expectations than promotions run during other times of the year, so it’s good to plan accordingly. Make sure to align your promotion with the retail sales calendar.
  3. Time-bound promotions: Tapping into the human fear of missing out (a.k.a. FOMO) is an effective marketing strategy that can help increase conversions. Limited time offers create a sense of scarcity that drives many online shoppers to make a purchase. There’s an urgency that’s built into promotions that are available for a “limited time only.” Ecommerce automation and personalization firm, Drip, offers some creative ways to drive more online sales with limited time offers.
  4. Pick your channels wisely: There are several avenues to share your promotions, including website banners, emails, social media ads, SMS messages, and even snail mail. Research from CouponFollow found that about half of survey respondents prefer emails to receive coupons and other promotional information. If you have a coupon-based promotion for specific products, banners on your website or product pages are a good way to show shoppers which products are available for the promotion.
  5. Tap into influencers: According to a benchmark study from Influencer MarketingHub, 54% of companies working with influencers operate ecommerce stores. Finding the right influencers to help drive awareness of your promotions gives you a way to increase exposure. While influencers can be a great resource for your promotional strategy, it’s important to do your research to find the right advocates that are relevant to your brand. Equally important is being transparent about how you’re working with influencers to avoid any shopper skepticism.
  6. Don’t let promotional materials linger: Make sure to take down all promotional messaging on your site and remove them from your marketing materials when the promotion is over, especially for time-bound promotions. Outdated messaging on your site and social pages is misleading and can hamper shopper trust in your brand.

Learn more about promotions and how to set one up for your Buy with Prime products in the knowledge center. If you’re not a Buy with Prime merchant and are interested in adding it to your ecommerce site, join our interest list.

Karina Kornacka