4 great sales promotion ideas

Buy-one-get-one-free deals are the most popular promotion amongst shoppers.

This is according to 2012 research from Shoppercentric, which found that so-called ‘Bogof’ offers now outstrip money-off and voucher deals as the UK’s favourite promotion.

Price promotions and other offers are a vital part of many firms’ sales strategies. But buy-one-get-one-free is just one of a range of potential techniques. Here is a round-up of some of the most effective.


So-called Bogof deals are, as the research shows, still very effective sales tools. But they are, of course, not suitable for every business. They tend to work well in businesses that are selling consumables – and particularly in those that are selling items that are likely to be used quickly. Buy-one-get-one-free deals are unlikely, however, to work particularly well if you are selling boilers – or, indeed, if you work in the service sector. Bogof deals are a potentially good way of boosting sales, but you need to think carefully about whether or not they are right for your business.


Voucher deals have put in a strong performance over the last couple of years. Spurred on, perhaps, by the rise of group-buying voucher sites like Groupon, consumers have been increasingly keen to take advantage of voucher offers since 2009.

If you are considering offering a voucher promotion, you should think about how best to make it work in your business. As with all sales techniques, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. You should consider factors such as the frequency with which you expect customers to return to your shop. If, for example, the products you sell are only likely to be re-bought once every few years, a voucher for money off their next purchase is unlikely to be much of an incentive. On the other hand if you are selling milk, this offer might seem rather more appealing. You should also remember that vouchers needn’t just offer money off. Instead, they might entitle the holder to a multibuy discount or another related promotion.

Pound promotions

As pound shops have continued their inexorable post-crash rise, pound promotions have become ever more popular. Clearly, price offers of this sort are not suitable for every business. But even if your products aren’t £1 material, it is still worth thinking about the psychology of pricing. Pound offers work not only because they are perceived to be cheap – but also because of their simplicity. Consider ways that you can use these principles in your pricing strategy.

Loyalty rewards

According to the Shoppercentric survey, loyalty offers have also increased in popularity since 2009. Again, these tend to work best in businesses in which customers are expected to make new purchases with a relatively high frequency – and in which there are relatively high levels of competition. There are a few practical considerations that you need to address before rolling out a loyalty scheme. In addition to working out the terms of your offer, you will also need to determine how it will be provided. For example, will you have a physical card that will be stamped? And if you have an online store, how will you incorporate the loyalty scheme? Make sure that you think about these factors well in advance in order to ensure that your loyalty scheme can be rolled out with maximum impact.

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