Offering discounted pricing is one of the most effective methods for promoting your online courses and increasing sales (because who doesn't love a bargain?!).

Thinkific makes it super simple to run special promotions using the Coupons feature, available as part of any upgraded plan. In this article we’ll show you how to create coupon codes for your courses and bundles, and how they can be redeemed by your customers.

Creating coupons

To get started, head to the Market & Sell section of your admin dashboard and select Coupons. Click on New Coupon. This will take you to the coupon creation screen.

Now, fill out the details of your promotion:

1. Choose your discount and select your products - you can offer a discount in terms of a specific amount, or a percentage of the pricing. Then choose which specific courses and bundles the discount can be applied to (for a site-wide promo select 'All Products').

If any of the products included in the campaign have subscription-based or payment plan pricing, an extra field will appear where you can specify how many months the discount should be applied for. This allows you to offer introductory deals, e.g. “Your first month free”, which is a great way to give people a free trial and capture the customer’s billing information at the same time.

The coupon period for subscription-based or payment plan products will always be in months. Take this into consideration when creating your coupon if your payment schedule is on a quarterly or annual basis. For example, if you have a payment schedule on a yearly basis and you want a student to receive the first two years for free, you would need to create a coupon for 13 months. This way your student will have the first billing period free (the 1st month) and the second billing for the second year free (the 13th month). 

You can leave this field blank to give free-forever access to a subscription or payment plan.

 For subscriptions with a custom first payment, coupons can only apply to the custom first payment (1 month) or applied to the whole subscription including the custom first payment.


2. Create your codes - this what the customer will need to use to redeem your offer; e.g. summersale2018, photoshoppromo10. To create multiple codes for the same promotion, hit the Create Code button multiple times.

3. Specify a quantity (optional) - use this field to limit the number of times a specific code can be used. For unlimited uses, leave this field blank.

4. Change the coupon name (optional) - the coupon name is what will be used to refer to the promotion on the checkout page, receipts, etc. It’s worth changing this to something that will be informative for both you and your customers.

5. Set an expiry date (optional) - adding an expiry date for your coupons is an excellent way to give a sense of urgency to your campaign and can lead to greater conversions because people are more likely to act instantly upon receiving your offer if there’s a deadline.

Coupons will no longer work as of 00:00 UTC on the expiry date set; e.g., if you set the expiry date as August 15th, the code will be valid until the 11:59PM UTC of August 14th.

5. Save your coupon - When you’re done, hit Save at the top right and you’ll be taken back to the main Coupons page to see your new promotion listed there.

Now you're ready to share the deal with your audience!

Redeeming coupons

There are two ways for customers to redeem coupons on your Thinkific site.

1. Selecting the ‘Have a coupon?’ option on the checkout page

Once the customer has entered the code and hit Apply, the new total for their order will be shown and they can type in their billing information and select Purchase to continue.

2. Via URL (recommended)

You can make it even simpler for customers to redeem their offer by sending them to your course or bundle landing page via a URL where the discount will already be applied.

All you need to do is add the following to the end of the normal URL for the page: ?coupon=CODE

For example, if your coupon code is "50off", your Course Landing Page URL would look like this:

When that link is used, your customers will see the discount reflected on the landing page and it will be already be applied when they hit checkout!

Note: You can even use this feature to send users straight to checkout with the coupon code already applied. First, find the direct link to checkout for your course (here's how) then simply add the ?coupon=CODE to end of that URL. If your coupon code is being applied to a direct link to checkout that has an additional price (for example, it has something like ?price_id=350430 at the end of the URL), when you add the coupon code, you'll want to add it using an ampersand like &coupon=CODE instead of with a question mark.

Happy coupon-ing! And please leave us your feedback on this article below.