Tiffany Joy Yamut Author
UpViral Team
May 24, 2023

Ecommerce Incentives That Attract and Retain Customers

Ecommerce Incentives That Attract and Retain Customers

Running an ecommerce business isn’t an easy feat. From uncovering your customers’ needs to providing customer support, there are many challenges that need to be overcome to succeed. This goes without saying that ecommerce growth is a long-term game.

Ecommerce incentives are a powerful strategy for solving two of the biggest challenges business owners face: customer acquisition and retention. You might be wondering why you need these incentives in the first place, and which ones to offer on your store.

Keep reading to learn more.

What Are Ecommerce Incentives?

Ecommerce incentives can be anything you offer to your website visitors and potential customers for free with the goal of getting them to convert.

A common incentive is a discount, which works every time. Discounts make customers feel smart because they can save money. Another example is an educational resource (like an ebook or shopping guide) for new visitors to learn a little bit more about yourself and how you can help them.

Why Should Businesses Give Incentives to Customers?

One might think that incentives are all about making customers feel happy — but it’s a crucial element to your growth. They encourage positive word-of-mouth (WoM), a form of free marketing. When visitors love your freebie, they’ll rave about it to their friends.

This is especially true for businesses that create a referral campaign in which they’re required to spread the word and get others to sign-up for your campaign to boost their chances of winning more incentives (or a bigger incentive).

Anything that adds value to customers’ lives will heighten their interest in your ecommerce business. This leads to purchases down the road.

When it comes to increasing loyalty, compelling incentives make customers stick around longer. For example, Starbucks does a great job of getting customers to keep buying coffee by rewarding them with stars, which they can use to grab a free drink soon.

Check out these ecommerce loyalty program ideas.

Ecommerce Incentives to Offer

Keep in mind that there is no one incentive that will appeal to all customers. Different customers have different needs and interests at the moment.

For this reason, it’s always a good idea to look closely at your audience and profile them according to their stage in the buying journey, the challenges they face, and the objections they experience with your product or service.

Without further ado, below are ecommerce offers ideas to consider.


Discount pricing is an age-old strategy that ecommerce businesses should never miss out on. What better way to convince people to give your product a try than with discounted prices? Here are some options that may be attractive to potential customers:

  • Invite first-time visitors into signing up for your email list in exchange for a 15% discount.
  • Offer an early bird discount on an upcoming product.
  • Take advantage of retail holidays when people are likely shopping for gifts.
  • Lower cart abandonment among customers who dislike extra costs by giving a discount code during checkout. Alternatively, you can offer free shipping for orders above a certain amount.
Image source: Freepik

Giveaway entry

The beauty of giveaways is that you can use them for attracting new customers and making existing customers feel special by letting them win one of your products. Here’s how to use a giveaway in both scenarios:

Customer acquisition

Place an email capture form on your website where you ask people to enter their name and email for a chance to win an awesome prize. Ask them to share the giveaway with as many friends as possible to increase their points.

At the end of the giveaway, hold a sale for non-winners to be able to purchase your prize for less. David of Bunkie Life implemented this strategy in his UpViral giveaway, which resulted in $300,000 in sales — this was on top of getting 34,297 leads.

Customer retention

Be sure to ask which products your existing customers would like to win in your next giveaway. You can email them a survey where you ask them to pick their top three favorite products. Then offer the product with the highest votes as the ultimate giveaway prize.

Thankfully, there are many free survey form tools that will allow you to do this, such as Google Forms and Jotform.

👉 Download our free survey templates to find out which incentives motivate your audience to refer others!

Donating to a cause

An alternative to offering discounts is letting your customers donate to a cause they care about. Customers feel good about themselves knowing that their purchase is helping make the world a better place.

Let your customers know that a part of their payment goes to a charity. For instance, if your business sells water bottles, choose an organization that advocates for clean water and support that cause. Involving your customers in a cause promotes trust and loyalty.

You can even combine cause marketing and giveaways to connect more deeply with customers. This UpViral case study will show you how.

Quizzes with free education

Not sure about having a quiz on your ecommerce website? Quizzes are becoming more popular nowadays as a tool for recommending the right products to a prospect.

Let’s say, for instance, you sell lipsticks. You can then ask questions that will allow you to recommend the best shades based on their answers. Send them the quiz results to their inbox. Yes, require them to enter their email address to get the results. (Use this as a strategy to grow your email list 😉)

Make it worth their while by sharing a shopping guide and tips to boost their quiz experience. It’s as if they’re having a free one-on-one consultation with your business.

Pro Tip: On your next UpViral giveaway, create a quiz and add it as one of your Custom Actions. Offer lots of points for participating in the quiz!

Final Thoughts

Draw people to your business with these ecommerce incentives. Whether you’re offering a discount, giving customers a chance to support a charity, helping them shop through free quizzes, or running a giveaway — remember to have a clear plan.

If you’re looking for a tool that lets you offer incentives and reach important goals — email list growth, conduct market research, social media growth, engagement, and sales — choose UpViral. Get full access today for only $1.

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