Single-Use Mobile Coupons – Myth or Reality?


Single-Use Coupons Embraced By Retailers

By: Dan Slavin, CodeBroker

More and more retailers are employing a digital coupon platform to deliver mobile coupon marketing programs in increasing numbers. The problem is that most digital coupons platforms deliver mobile coupons that can be used by consumers over and over.

In order to provide true single-use coupons, a combination of integrated capabilities is required. Having built a comprehensive security model from the ground up, CodeBroker’s mobile coupon marketing platform is used by top retailers to deliver single-use couponsfor customer acquisition and engagement.

Here is a research study that shows consumer demand for mobile coupons packed with insights that you may fund helpful.

So what constitutes a truly single-use mobile coupon? It must:

  • Contain a unique code,
  • Be delivered to a specific device and/or individual,
  • Cease to be usable upon redemption, and
  • Support simultaneous multi-channel (delivery and) expiration.


Unique Code

Using a unique code is the first step in implementing secure, single-use coupons. A unique code is a means to track the offer from issuance through redemption and expiration. By limiting the number of unique codes, a retailer can deliver high-value offers to their customers without fear of incurring significant liability should the offer go viral.


The combination of a unique code and a mobile device creates a link between the retailer and customer. Managing this relationship allows the retailer to track all coupons the customer has either loaded or received onto their mobile device. Information such as which device received the offer, when it was viewed and when it was redeemed give the retailer a comprehensive picture of the purchase funnel.


During checkout the coupon’s unique code is either scanned, in the form of a barcode, or entered into the POS by the cashier. While not required, being able to scan a barcode during checkout provides a seamless and expedient process for both the customer and retailer. Following recognition of the unique code by the POS system, the coupon is marked as redeemed and the coupon is “cleared.” By clearing the coupon, it has been “collected” at the time of purchase and is no longer available for use.

Multi-channel Expiration

A huge challenge in marking a coupon as redeemed is expiring it in all of the channels it was made available. Expiration must happen in all of the channels the customer viewed and loaded the coupon – SMS app, retailer’s app, email message, Passbook, Facebook, etc. Simultaneous expiration ensures the coupon cannot be used more than once eliminating coupon fraud.

Retailers benefit significantly from deploying a mobile coupon marketing program that uses single-use mobile coupons. First, CodeBroker customers routinely see up to 50% redemption for on-demand coupons, significantly higher than paper-based coupons. Higher redemption rates translate to an increase in incremental revenue as offers drive more trips to the store and increased basket size.

Second, effective offers are helping retailers build brand loyalty with their customers increasing their lifetime value.

Third, retailers are able to track the entire purchase funnel – from delivery through redemption – creating a comprehensive picture of consumer purchase behavior. And finally, CodeBroker customers have realized significant savings by reducing print spend when delivering combining promotion text messages with their mobile coupon marketing program.