4 SIGNS THAT YOUR ONLINE BUSINESS IS A VICTIM OF UNAUTHORIZED COUPON INJECTIONS

by Matt Peck, on Apr 7, 2022 3:30:00 PM

As a digital retailer, you put a lot of time and thought into tracking and utilizing your KPIs to make decisions that improve your business. What happens when this data paints a different picture and the numbers don’t quite seem to be adding up? It could be a good indicator that coupon extensions have infiltrated your coupon codes. Here are a few clues to determine if improper redemption of discount codes is happening to your brand and if preventative services are right for you. 

  • A hijacked user experience - Extensions are anything but subtle with their promo code sharing. One of the easiest ways to confirm their presence is to simply download extensions such as Honey, Wikibuy, and Rakuten and test your customer journey out for yourself. They'll either pop up almost immediately or after you add an item to your cart, offering your leaked discount codes or price comparison pop-up features that lead customers away from your site and directly to your competitors. 

  • Increased coupon usage and compressed margins - A surge in coupon code use despite no changes to your marketing campaign is another key indicator of improper discount sharing. Check to see if codes used to reward behaviors match those behaviors. For example, has there been an excessive amount of coupons used for newsletter sign-ups, but not that many sign-ups? Or overuse of coupons reserved for small populations such as military or employee codes? Or even more obviously, is there an influencer or affiliate code suddenly being attributed to a coupon extension or a sudden repopulation of old forgotten coupons from campaigns past? These are all signs that your coupon codes are being scraped and shared across coupon extensions. 

  • High costs to acquire and poor revenue attribution - Not only are these sites scraping and sharing your discount codes, but they’re also hijacking affiliate credit by charging you commissions for conversions they did not drive and were likely driven through organic or in-house campaigns. This double-dip into your revenue may reveal itself through a sudden dive in profit margins or through sites such as Honey, Wikibuy, or Rakuten being attributed for 3-4 times more sales than any other affiliates.

    Make sure to take a dive into your CAC to try and understand any increases or outliers you might see. In your affiliate network dashboard, look at affiliates like Honey and find what percent of your overall commission you are paying them. If they are unusually high, when did these payments start?

    If they appeared around the same time as one of your other discount campaigns, it's likely these commissions are being misattributed.  
  • Higher cart abandonment rates - With price comparison pop-ups that redirect your customers to competitor sites, you could see increases in cart abandonment or dips in overall conversion rates. Extensions that offer price comparison options to consumers navigating your product pages can increase hijacked user sessions and decrease overall conversion rates.

Top it off with longer load times and expired coupon codes, these sites are not just hijacking your coupons, but your entire user experience. If you are experiencing lower AOV or conversion rates, it could be a sign that you could be caught up in a coupon scam. 

If your site fails any of the above tests or you’re still unsure, cleanCART offers a free 14-day trial that offers protection by blocking these extensions from executing on your site. Affected merchants who download cleanCART will notice significant changes to their KPIs including higher AOV, conversion rates, and an overall increase to their bottom line. 

With cleanCART, you will have access to unlock data-driven insights about your consumers - which extensions are they using, which extensions could be eroding your margins the most, and how much recovered revenue are you getting back with cleanCART's protection.

Our services work so effectively that 70% of our merchants continue with cleanCART after their trial is up. Try it for yourself to see if it's right for your business by signing up for a free trial or checking out our Shopify or BigCommerce app store listings.

Topics:ecommerce

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