Running a promotion in-store can be a tricky tactic. On one hand, it’ll attract more people to walk through your doors. But on the other, it may have a negative impact on your overall profits because you’re offering your products at a lower price!

So how do you find that sweet balance?

Take a look at this post to find out how you can run in-store promotions without killing your profits…

Define your margins – set your campaign goals

First step is to map out your overall campaign goals. Once you set an acceptable margin range for your products, you’ll be able to determine the type of promotion you can run.

  • Are you looking to attract new customers?
  • Do you want customers to shop with you more frequently?
  • Do you want to push a new product?

Depending on what your overall goal is, will depend on how far you should go with your discounts. For example, if you’re trying to attract a new audience then it may be worth offering a bigger and more enticing discount than say 10% off, in the hope that they will become a lifelong customer and spend more with you over time.

And sure you may want to achieve all of the above goals, but it’s important not to focus your efforts on everything at once. Segment your audiences to run targeted campaigns. That way you’ll have better transparency for your promotion and your goal will be clear from the off-set.

Think creatively

Running a promotion doesn’t always mean that you have to run a super impressive coupon deal that offers loads of discount, and leaves you with barely any profit. There are some promotions out there that look like great deals, but will actually encourage people to spend more with you.

Some of our favorite promotions that won’t harm your profits include:

Loyalty points:

This is a great promotion to encourage people to keep shopping with you. You can create a loyalty store card so that once customers have shopped with you a set number of times, they’ll receive something for their loyalty. This could be a discount or even a free gift that won’t eat into your margins.

A flash sale

A flash sale is a smart choice to make because it’s limited to specific time, meaning it’ll encourage more people to walk through your doors. Retailers often use this type of promotion when they need to shift old stock. The limited time period creates a sense of urgency, and while you’re running the flash sale you can highlight full priced products that may incentivise customers to spend more.

Spend over x amount and get x off

This type of promotion works similar to a loyalty card but encourages customers to spend a large amount all in one go, so that they get a discount. For example, if customers spend over $100, then you’ll give them 10% off (or whatever you can afford to do depending on your margins).

Execute at the right time

We talked above about trying not to tackle every promotion at once because it can be damaging to profits. But one of the biggest problems that we see so often is a store running a promotion every other week.

You can probably picture the culprits in your head, and the problem with doing this is that customers start to lose faith in the brand. Customers learn to wait for the sale, because they know that they happen so frequently – after all – why would you pay full price if you know that you can pay less a week later?

When it comes to your promotions, don’t run a sale every week and make sure you execute your promotions at the right time. Waiting for the holiday’s is perfect because this is when shoppers are most likely to come into the store and spend money with you.

Up-sell at the cash register

Sure the customers in your store may have been enticed to come in because you’re holding a sale, but that doesn’t mean they have to leave with just discounted items.

Implement an up-selling strategy so that every time a customer buys something, they are offered an additional product to buy at the cash register. To make it more likely that they will buy, train your employees so that they have the knowledge to offer expert advice on all of your products. That way, they can offer great advice and suggest additional products that the customer could need to go alongside the one that they are already buying.

And to incentivise employees to do this you could even offer commission on every transaction that they manage to up-sell.

Bonus tip: Let customers try before they buy

Another great way to encourage more customers is to incentivise people to buy your products by throwing in a freebie. Say for example you’re trying to push your latest perfume or makeup range. Well, give customers a taste so they can test if the product is right for them.

A ‘try before you buy’ promotion is perfect when you’re trying to push a new product. It won’t have any real impact on your budget, yet it’ll raise awareness of the product and encourage people to part with their hard earned dollars!


Running various promotions can bring in plenty more people to your store, and if you’re smart about it, you can encourage customers to spend more while shopping with you. A promotion doesn’t always have to eat into your profits – set your campaign goals and choose the right promotion for you.

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