SMS examples and strategy

Discount SMS Message Examples

Create discount text messages that convert with these examples and strategic tips.

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  • The Vitamin Shoppe
    The Vitamin Shoppe: DON'T PANIC: You've got 'til midnight for up to $25 off! Hurry & use coupon code: FILLCART Shop Now --> [link/2f24b67d-e960-5bce-9d95-] .

    12:00 AM, Fri 8 August 2022

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How to Craft Effective Discount Text Messages: Examples and Tips

People don’t sign up for your SMS marketing list just to humor you. They do so because they’re hoping to get something out of it. They could want to be among the first to hear about new product launches or be able to reach your customer support via text message. But most likely, they are hoping to get some good discounts.

In a text marketing study from Simple Texting, 50 percent of respondents said they’d be more inclined to sign up for SMS marketing messages if they knew that would mean getting access to promotional offers such as flash sales.

That means you can use discounts as a sign-up incentive, but also that you need to send great discount messages if you want to keep your SMS subscribers engaged. You’re not the only brand asking for attention in their SMS inbox, so you’ll need strong copy that makes your discounts stand out.

MailCharts collects and analyzes discount text messages from hundreds of ecommerce brands so you don’t have to. Sign up today and get instant access to our database.

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We’ve gathered some of the best discount message examples below for you to use as inspiration.

Discount Messages: Strategic Tips

Tell them why they should buy

No discount is big enough to make a person buy if they’re not interested in the product you’re selling. Use your discount text message to describe the benefits of your product(s) on sale and how those can make the recipient’s life better.

Have a clear, specific CTA

People see “buy now” and “shop now” buttons everywhere. Make your discount messages stand out by adding a specific CTA that leaves no doubt as to what will happen when recipients click the link in your SMS.

For example, if your ocean-friendly sunscreen is on sale, your call-to-action could read “Get your ocean-friendly sunscreen for less.” You could even add a benefit to your CTA and turn it into “Get your sunscreen to protect your skin and the ocean.”

Personalize your message

Use the data you have on your SMS subscribers to segment them and send targeted discount offers. If you’re offering a discount on laptops, you might send a very different message to parents of kids who are about to start college than to freelancers who need a high-performance work tool.

Don’t know that much about your audience? You can also address your recipients by name or send them a special discount code on their birthday to make them feel special.

Don’t overdo it

Discount messages to customers lose their power when you send them too often. Not only might they annoy your subscribers, but if you’re offering discounts all the time, there is no reason for your customers to buy anything from you at full price anymore. When they see something they like, they’ll just wait until the next discount lands in their inbox.

Discount Message Examples

Create a sense of urgency

Nobody likes missing out on a good deal. Creating a sense of urgency with your discount message is one surefire way to get people to click. In the example above, The Vitamin Shoppe uses all caps to tell its recipients not to panic—which of course puts them on high alert wondering what they could be panicking about.

The brand clearly communicates when the sale will end (midnight). This is important because when you use a vague phrase such as “final hours,” people may click through to your store a few hours later hoping to still benefit from the sale when it has already ended, leaving them frustrated.

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The Vitamin Shoppe
The Vitamin Shoppe: DON'T PANIC: You've got 'til midnight for up to $25 off! Hurry & use coupon code: FILLCART Shop Now --> [link/2f24b67d-e960-5bce-9d95-] .

12:00 AM, Fri 8 August 2022

Make it exclusive

People love to feel special. What better way to give them that feeling than by offering them an exclusive deal like Proof Eyewear does here? The 55 percent off wood products is an SMS-only deal.

This message also adds a sense of urgency by communicating that the sale ends at midnight and that not a lot of products are left in stock. It ends with a clear CTA that emphasizes that sense of urgency once more: “Hurry and get yours today!”

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Proof Eyewear
PSSSTTT... Exclusive SMS deal only!! Get 55% off of Wood Products. Use Code proofwood only through midnight tonight. We're starting to run low on this years inventory. Hurry and get yours today! [link/1a0dc710-2347-5307-a5e9-6]

12:00 AM, Fri 8 August 2022

Send a birthday discount

Another way to make someone feel special is to send them a discount code for their birthday. It’s even better when you can address the recipient by name, as Jennifer Miller Jewelry does here, as that makes the message feel more personal.

Also note how the text is signed “xo Jen,” which is a very informal way of ending a commercial text message. It really seems as if this is a birthday text from a friend.

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Jennifer Miller Jewelry
Jennifer Miller Jewelry: Happy Birthday jessica! 🎉 Sending a little sparkle your way ✨ Enjoy 20% OFF your next order. Just use code: HBDMC7HL2X7 within 7 days! 🎁 [link/fab68215-3a57-41] xo Jen

12:00 AM, Fri 4 April 2021

Make loyalty program members feel special

If you have a loyalty program, you need to give customers a reason to join and stay part of that program. One way to do that is by offering them early access to your sales, like Asics does in the message above.

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ASICS: Cyber Deals are coming soon, but for OneASICS™ members, they're already here. Members can use promo code, CYBER, at checkout for early access to 30% off. Log in or sign up to shop: [link/d5ad4b20-650e-55e6-b68e-80] .

12:00 AM, Sun 11 November 2022

Alternatively, you can create discount codes just for your loyalty program members. In the SMS above, Philosophy shares a meaningful discount code (“VIPFLASH”) with its loyalty members for 40 percent off.

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Philosophy: Loyalty members are in for a treat! Shop 40% off. code: VIPFLASH [link/bc904acb-c457-434e-967d-4179919]

12:00 AM, Tue 3 March 2022

Keep it product-specific

There’s no need to give a site-wide discount each time you run a sale. You can do what Steve Madden does here and discount a single product or a single product category. This works especially well with bestsellers. But you can also try this tactic with products you want to get rid of but aren’t selling as quickly.

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Steve Madden
Steve Madden: SLAY. This platform bootie is 40% OFF. Get it now, before it sells out > [link/152ca437-8aab-5eb5-9ff3-90]

12:00 AM, Sun 11 November 2022

Use discounts to save abandoned carts

When a shopper abandons their cart, you might want to send them a simple abandoned cart reminder first. If that doesn’t work, consider offering them a discount for finalizing their purchase like Jennifer Miller Jewelry does here.

After all, they may have abandoned a product because they felt the original price was too high, or because they didn’t really need the item they were looking at. In both cases, offering a discount can persuade them to treat themselves.

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Jennifer Miller Jewelry
Jennifer Miller Jewelry: 👋 Hi, marina! You left something sparkly in your cart ✨ Take 15% OFF with code: SAVE15SJPNWGQ6. Just click here: [link/f4e2b865-9436-4d] Text STOP to opt-out

12:00 AM, Sun 3 March 2021

Keep it a mystery

Inducing curiosity can be a great way to get someone over to your online shop. In this discount text example, Tea Collection lets its subscribers know that it has a 40 percent off deal. But if subscribers want to know what the deal is for, they need to click through to the website.

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Tea Collection
Tea Collection: Just in time for cozy season...don't miss out on this NEW offer! Click to reveal 40% off this deal: [link/85ff1d8c-a0b6-5b53-a3dd-5]

12:00 AM, Sun 11 November 2022

Offer early access

We’ve already seen a few examples of how you can make your SMS subscribers feel special. This is yet another one. Accessory brand Vincero doesn’t specify a certain group the early access is for. By saying “You’ve got first dibs,” the brand speaks directly to the recipient, making it seem like the recipient has personally been chosen.

The use of the word “now” adds some urgency to the message, as does the CTA “Shop early and save big.”

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Vincero Collective
Vincero: You've got first dibs. Your early access to our Black Friday Sale is on now! Shop early and save big: [link/a64d1351-6fec-55b0-9415-544a]

12:00 AM, Sun 11 November 2022

Discount new products

Nothing stops you from giving a discount when you launch a new product as Beard Struggle does here, but be careful with this tactic as it may decrease the product’s perceived value.

Another tactic Beard Struggle uses is including an image of the new product in its text message. Images tend to elicit higher engagement, so they’re something you might want to experiment with. Just take into account that not all phones and mobile network providers will automatically display images the way you want them to and that adding images to SMS will turn them into an MMS.

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The Beard Struggle
Beard Struggle: The Most Anticipated Scent Of The Year Is Here! Available For An irresistible Price. Use Code RAINBF [link/4215f437-5253-5c36-9259-5a1cc3]

12:00 AM, Sun 11 November 2022

Have a flash sale

Want to get people to your store ASAP? A flash sale is the way to go. After all, one of the primary SMS marketing benefits is that you can instantly reach your subscribers where they spend so much of their time— on their phones.

Flash sales are also interesting because they have a sense of urgency baked into them. Most people know what they are, and so all you need to do is let your subscribers know what the flash sale consists of, and how long it’s on for.

Most flash sales are on for 24 hours. It’s a good idea to remind your subscribers throughout those 24 hours of how much time they have left, as Aurate does here in its .

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AUrate New York
Aurate: ATTN: FLASH SALE ENDS IN 8 HRS. Bc a flash is a flash. So go get that 20% asap. [link/479f9b08-4452-5edf-8c1e-16c]

12:00 AM, Tue 9 September 2022

Promote seasonal discounts

Our MailCharts database is full of SMS marketing examples that use holidays and other seasonal events such as the start of summer as a reason to hold a sale. In the text above, designer fashion outlet store BHFO announces its 4th of July sale. Note how the fireworks emojis are relevant to the theme of the sale.

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BHFO: 🎆 Cue the fireworks - the July 4th Sale starts NOW! 🎆 [link/6cd7eb15-9de1-561b-a777-1] Up to 20% off ALL sale items.

12:00 AM, Sat 7 July 2022

Share back-in-stock discounts

Every reason to celebrate is a reason to treat your customer to a sale. Water brand Hint decided to offer 15 percent off its bundles, as well as free shipping, when it relaunched its popular Peach Raspberry drink. Just as with a new product launch, though, you want to make sure that the sale is clearly a way to celebrate the product being back in stock rather than the discount devaluing the product in the eyes of your customers.

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Hint Water
Hint Water ONLINE EXCLUSIVE The Peach Raspberry sensation is FINALLY back. Get 15% off bundles + FREE shipping now. Shop the sale and stay hydrated: [link/c407e866-7e48-4e] Text STOP to opt-out

12:00 AM, Tue 7 July 2021

Switch it up

As the discount message examples on this page demonstrate, there are many ways in which you can share discounts with your SMS subscribers. Experiment with different tactics while keeping our strategic tips in mind and don’t be afraid to combine some strategies, like adding a sense of urgency to a holiday sales message.

Want even more examples? Sign up today and get access to our SMS database with text messages from hundreds of ecommerce brands. Discover what your competitors are texting and find inspiration in other industries.