How To Use Discount Pricing Strategies To Sell More Online

Online retailers are constantly searching for ways to decrease cart abandonment and increase conversions. Pricing is the #1 marketing tool for online retailers. How your products are priced and how the pricing is presented is a key factor in converting sales. There are several different discount pricing strategies retailers can implement to optimize their conversions and reduce bouncing visitors. Let’s get to it!

Shipping Costs

According to Baymard, the #1 reason for cart abandonment is extra costs.

Extra shipping costs are a major turn off to online shoppers. No one likes to be surprised with a price increase when it comes time to check out. Being clear and up front about the purchase total will reduce confusion to the shopper. Using fixed price shipping is one way to avoid a price increase once the shopper tries to check out. However, offering free shipping is more effective and has become the standard for online shoppers. In fact, over 50% of all online retailers offer free shipping! When Amazon introduced free shipping their sales went up in every country except France. Why France? Because they charged 20 cents for shipping. The psychological feeling of a shopper getting a deal, or a “win,” is what drives sales. Free shipping is a simple way to give them that feeling.

Discounted and Personalized Pricing

Giving a discount on products can help your store compete with marketplaces. According to nChannel, 65% of online shoppers chose marketplaces over other retailers because of better prices. However, shoppers that have left an item in their cart before leaving the site can still be won back. 54% of shoppers will purchase products left in shopping carts if those products are offered at a lower price. Offering discounts on products that are already in a shopper’s cart does not violate MAP. “The Balance” recently published an excellent resource for creating profitable pricing strategies that do not interfere with MAP regulations.Giving personalized discounts to lure the shopper back is effective and gives them the feeling that they are getting a win.

Blame Amazon, but the fact is you may have to advertise your products below the average price point to compete, especially when it comes to Google shopping. Comparison shopping is on the rise and sometimes your prices are the only thing that can help you stand out. Unfortunately, brands can enforce minimum advertised price policies that don’t allow retailers to advertise below a certain price. To comply with this, retailers have tried using “add to cart to see price” and have also implemented coupon codes. Retailers are also allowing shoppers to “make an offer” on products and negotiate directly with the retailer. Retailers using this tactic have converted 1 out of every 3 offers received. Giving a discount and being flexible with your pricing will increase conversions. However, if you don’t abide by M.A.P. restrictions you could lose the ability to sell a manufacturer’s product.


A discounted pricing strategy can have a major impact on your conversion rate. The way you present discounted prices is equally important to the price itself. If M.A.P. restrictions are causing friction between you and the manufacturer, implement strategies that both sides can be content with. Using these strategies will help improve your sales and compete against the big guys in your industry.

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