8 Discount Strategies to Sell More Stuff

8 discount strategies to boost product sales

The holidays are right around the corner, so it's time for shop owners to plan their special promotions for Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and beyond. 

Not sure where to start? Keep scrolling to get eight discount strategies you can try in your shop to win this holiday season. 

PS – A good promo is step #1. But what about all the other days of the month? Snag your FREE copy of How to Plan a Month of Marketing Promotions to fill up your calendar!


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1. Loss leader

A loss leader is when you sell one product at a loss in order to get customers in the door. On Black Friday, these are called "doorbusters."

But some companies, like grocery stores, do this year-round! They take a hit on the $0.99 avocado but make it up when you buy two bags of tortilla chips.

Just make sure that once your customer is in the door to snag the too-good-to-be-true deal, you have a strong up-sell/cross-sell strategy in place!

2. Free X when you spend $Y

Similar to the loss leader, this strategy is when you give your customers something free when they hit a spending threshold. Cosmetic companies are famous for this! (Free tote with a $75 purchase, anyone?)

This carrot can drive up your average purchase value and give your customers the feeling they are gaining something very valuable for free. For instance, if you give away something that retails for $12, but it only costs you $4 to give away, that’s a GOOD DEAL! For them and for you!

3. Store-wide sale 

On a big-discount holiday like Black Friday or Cyber Monday, it's common to offer a store-wide sale like 15% of 20% off everything. These are particularly exciting for your customer if you have items that rarely go on sale.

4. $X off a purchase of $Y+

Dollars off a minimum purchase is a great alternative to a store-wide sale. This caps the amount of discount you give AND retains the value of your products. So instead of your customer seeing the item as “worth less” because it’s on sale, they get rewarded for buying more at “full price.”

This kind of discount also works as X% off a purchase of $Y.

5. Buy more, Save more

A tiered promotion incentivizes people to buy more to save more. (10% off when you spend $Y, 15% off when you spend $Z, and so on!) This one can do wonders for your average purchase amount, too!

PS – If you’re selling online, you’ll need multiple discount codes or an app to help you make sure it all works out at checkout!

6. BOGO X% off

This time of year, people are buying multiples of products for gifts. A BOGO deal will incentivize them to stock up at your place. BOGO 50% off is essentially 25% OFF, but that 50% looks better than 25% in an email or social post! 

7. Special Collection Pricing 

If you don't have the margins to put everything on sale, you can build a special collection of sale items just for Black Friday or Cyber Monday, while leaving everything else full-price. 

You can also discount the items in your collection according to your margins. For instance, item A can be 25% off, while item B is 8% off. Then in your marketing, you can say, "up to 25% off select items."

8. Free Shipping

Finally, never underestimate the power of free shipping, Friend! Studies show that shipping costs can keep us from making a purchase. (Basically, Amazon Prime has made us all very entitled!)

So ask yourself how much of a hit you’re willing to take on shipping to win the sale. If you can’t offer it on every purchase, set a minimum purchase amount!

Whew! We made it! Now it’s time to pull out a calendar and start planning those sales! For extra help, be sure to grab your copy of "How to Plan a Month of Promotions!

 how to create your monthly marketing promotions


A previous version of this post appeared on Katie Does Marketing.

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