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Planning your first sale or promotion

Before launching your first promotion, it helps to create a plan. This ensures you’re targeting the right audience and creating offers that drive sales without hurting your profits.

To get the most out of this guide, we recommend keeping these questions in mind while you learn about discounting products and promoting sales with Squarespace.

  • Which items do you want to discount?
  • How long will this sale run for?
  • Which customers are you targeting? Casual visitors, loyal followers, or both?
  • Which marketing channels will you use to promote your discount?
  • What is your most important goal for this promotion? For example, is it to get rid of back stock, attract new followers on social media, or boost overall sales?

Don’t worry if you don’t have answers right now. We’ll revisit these questions at the end of this guide. To get started, let’s look at the different ways you can offer savings.

Choose the right promotion

Depending on your goals, there are two ways to run promotions in Squarespace: Sale pricing and discounts. Which method you choose depends on how you want the promotion to work.

Sale pricing

Like a "Sale" tag on an item in a retail store, sale pricing is a great way to casually promote discounted items to browsing customers.

Sale pricing:

  • Adds a Sale badge to the item.
  • Shows the original price with a strikethrough to highlight savings.
  • Is set manually for each item.
  • Applies to all customers, without a discount code.

When to use sale pricing

Sale pricing draws visitors to specific items, making it a useful way to get rid of back stock at the end of a season. The visible savings can also increase conversion by making products more appealing. 

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Discounts

Like a "20% off electronics" holiday sale, discounts let you exercise greater control over promotions. This can include sharing the promo code with specific customers or limiting the discount to orders over a set total.

Discounts:

  • Show savings at checkout.
  • Take an amount off, percent off, or offer free shipping.
  • Can apply to specific items, categories, or entire orders.
  • Require a promo code or can apply automatically (on the Commerce Advanced plan).
  • Track when promo codes are used.

When to use discounts

Discounts' precise customization makes them ideal for targeted promotions. With a promo code, you can offer the discount to certain customers, like convention attendees, mailing list subscribers, or social media followers. You can also set a duration for the discount, which is great for timed promotions like a weekend sale.

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Promote on your site

After you create your promotion, announce it on your site to encourage purchases and help customers redeem their discounts.

Set up a Sale category

Add a Sale category to all discounted products. This adds a navigation link on your Products Page to all items in the sale category. You can also add this Sale link to your site navigation

Add a Promotional Pop-Up

A Promotional Pop-Up grabs shoppers' attention when they land on your site. You can customize the pop-up to match your site's branding, share the discount code, and direct visitors to your Sale page with a button.

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Add an Announcement Bar

An Announcement Bar displays text and a link at the top of your site. This is a simple way to draw attention to the promotion without the more obvious pop-up.

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Create a Summary Block

A Summary Block displays your sale items in a magazine-style layout. Add this to your homepage to display a sample of discounted items. You can pair it with Text Block to include details, like "Save 20% on all Menswear" or "Free shipping with code SHIP."

Share your promotion

To make your sale a success, you need to draw visitors to your site by reaching out to them outside of Squarespace. We offer different marketing integrations to help you do that. This can help you attract new shoppers with the lure of potential savings or reward followers with promo codes for exclusive rewards.

Promote on social media

Sharing links to discounted products on social networks encourages traffic to your site and can spread through your followers to their friends. This grows your potential audience. If you have a blog, create a post announcing the promotion, using Product Blocks to show off sale items, and then push that post to social media.

An online store’s social media strategy is always a work in progress. You can learn more about what works for you by offering promotions and measuring the impact.

Send a newsletter to your mailing list

Mailing lists help you keep in touch with customers and reward them with offers. With a MailChimp account, you can add a Newsletter Block to any content area, or add a newsletter subscribe option to checkout. You can then contact your subscribers with a discount code and promotion details.

Track results

Tracking the promotion will help you understand which channels drive traffic and which promotions create the biggest sales bump.

Track conversion in Squarespace Analytics

Use Squarespace Analytics to view site traffic, referral sources, and total sales during your promotion. You can use date filters to compare your promotion to other time periods. Purchase Funnel shows how many visits convert into purchases and where customers are dropping off. 

See discount use

In the Discounts panel, check how many people redeemed each discount. For example, if you gave out a promo code at an event, you can see how many attendees redeemed it code afterward.

Next steps

Now, you can return to the questions at the top of this guide to begin planning your promotion.

Which items do you want to discount?

  • Sale pricing is great for highlighting select items and getting rid of back stock.
  • Discounts are ideal for targeted promotions. They can be applied to specific categories or encourage spending over a set amount.

How long will this sale run for?

  • If you want to get rid of back stock, you can leave sale pricing in place until it sells out.
  • If you’re trying to encourage a temporary boost in sales, announcing a time limit for your discount can create a sense of urgency.

Which customers are you targeting? Casual visitors, loyal followers, or both?

  • Clearly marked sale pricing can sway casual visitors with significant savings.
  • Sending a promo code to social media or a mailing list rewards followers and helps you track the impact of each channel.

Which marketing channels will you use to promote your discount?

What are your terms?

If your promotion has terms and conditions, display this important information in an FAQ, at checkout, or both.

What’s your most important goal with this promotion?

Whether you want to get rid of back stock, attract new followers, or boost overall sales, you can use the features in this guide in different combinations to accomplish your goals and make your promotion a success.

 

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Planning your first sale or promotion