The Adtraction Blog

Single use discount codes in affiliate marketing

For most advertisers, discount codes are an important and prominent part of their affiliate marketing strategies. But working with discount codes can present challenges for advertisers too, such as margin control, incremental value, and controlling how codes are distributed.

More and more advertisers are now switching to use single-use discount codes for their affiliate campaigns, helping them to not only control code use, but to offer their customers unique and targeted shopping experiences.

What are single use discount codes?

A unique or single-use discount code is a discount code delivered to a customer that can only be redeemed once, or once by the specific individual it was sent to. Sometimes single use discount codes will be personalised to an individual customer.

Outside of affiliate marketing, it’s common to see single-use discount codes (sometimes unique to a customer) delivered via email marketing.

How do publishers integrate with single use discount codes?

The starting point for advertisers to run single use codes is to ensure their e-commerce platform can support it.

It’s equally important that affiliate partners can support the implementation of single use codes. Major discount code sites will be able to issue single-use codes either programmatically or via static files.

Technology partners like Uniqodo can also help power the distribution of single use codes between advertisers and their affiliate partners, particularly if an advertiser doesn’t already have the capacity to create single use codes and issue them to partners in an efficient way.

What are the use cases for single use discount codes?

There are a number of ways single use codes can be used to engage more new customers, improve shopping experiences and give advertisers more control over the way their discount codes are distributed.

Here are some benefits of using single use codes:

  • Single use codes that are unique to each user ensures a code specifically intended for the affiliate channel cannot leak out to either other affiliate partners or other channels
  • For affiliate partners, single use codes mean an exclusive discount code really will be an exclusive, and cannot be promoted by any other partner. This is especially important if advertisers work with codes targeted at specific customer groups, like students or health care workers
  • Customers can receive customised shopping experiences that are unlocked by single-use codes, such as a code that unlocks a ‘VIP’ shopping or pre-order journey
  • Advertisers can tailor codes to individual users or customer types, without fear that a code meant for an engaged existing customer falls into the hands of a new customer

If any advertisers are interested in using single use codes with their affiliate partners, please get in touch at

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