VOE Coupon System - Handling Coupon Codes
Setting up your web pages to accept coupon codes
If your VOE account was set up after August, 2000, you probably have this code already incorporated into your include files. By default the code is included in these include files: br-opt.htm, or-user2.htm. You can optionally incorporate the code into any page you desire. Some merchants may want to create a special splash page just for people using coupons, with special information and notices.
Below is the html code which prompts a user to specify the coupon code and tosses it into their shopping cart. NOTE that you need to replace the myid merchant ID with your own or else it will NOT work properly.
<CENTER> <FORM METHOD=post ACTION="http://order.icorp.net/mpr/voe"> <INPUT TYPE="hidden" NAME="c_myid" VALUE="1"> <INPUT TYPE="hidden" NAME="function" VALUE="review"> If you have a coupon code, enter it here: <INPUT SIZE=15 NAME="coupon" VALUE=""><INPUT TYPE="submit" VALUE="Add to Cart"> </FORM> <CENTER>
Of course, what you see above is a rather "plain" input form. You could spice-it-up using a graphical submit button and different formatting/text if you desire.
Distributing coupon codes
Once you have generated a coupon code, you can give the code out in whatever manner you desire. If you wish to implement an e-mail campaign and provide others with the code, feel free. This is a good technique to use for non-unique coupons (that can be used by multiple people but may have other restrictions such as minimum purchase, max number of uses and/or an expiration date).
One advantage to giving out the code is that the user can make a note of it and use it later at any time. They do not have to visit your web site right now - they just have to note the code and specify where appropriate at some later point in time. The disadvantage of manually giving out a code is that the user will have to manually input it later - but luckily the code isn't too long or confusing.
Another useful means of using a coupon is to create a special web page that details the promotion around which the coupon may be a part. You can then display the coupon code on that page. If you want to get fancy and create a special graphic that looks like a coupon, that might be cool - the point is you are free to be as creative as you'd like.
Embedding a coupon code in a URL
You can also embed a coupon code in a URL which automates the process of specifying the coupon and automatically tosses the coupon into a user's shopping basket and takes them to your web site. This can be very helpful if you want to maximize the convenience to the user.
You can create a promotional page with the URL that people can click on, wrap it around a nice graphic of a coupon, etc. With one click, the user is taken to the basket review page and the coupon is tossed into their shopping cart. They can even bookmark the URL so that if they decide to not purchase right now, if their temporary cart is erased (which happens if its not used in x days) they can re-click the URL and repeat the process as long as the coupon is still valid.
http://order.icorp.net/mpr/voe?review+c_myid+x_couponWhere:myid is your merchant ID
coupon is the coupon code
Here's a sample URL:http://order.icorp.net/mpr/voe?review+c_sample+x_bob-8-xyzz
Click To Demonstrate
Note that we are using the "review" command in the URL above. Actually, you can use the +x_coupon parameter in just about any stand-alone VOE URL reference. So if you're more comfortable with the VOE's inner workings you can incorporate the process of tossing a coupon into the shopping cart with other functions (such as adding a particular item to the cart AND the coupon at the same time).