If you engage in affiliate marketing, displaying coupons for stores is a great way to boost your sales and connect with buy-ready shoppers.
The conversion rate on traffic you send from coupons is always going to be super high because the very nature of a coupon means that people are ready to make their purchases.
However, if you want to make sure you get credit for as many sales as possible, you’ll want to do more than just throw up a regular WordPress post with the coupon code in plain text. Think about how the big guys do it – they use “click to copy/reveal” and other tricks to make sure they get the click.
Affiliate Coupons is a freemium WordPress plugin that helps you add that same type of functionality to your WordPress site… plus a lot of other helpful features. You’ll be able to create a directory of stores, list all of their coupons, employ conversion-boosting tactics for displaying coupons, and more.
In our Affiliate Coupons review, I’ll share more about exactly what this plugin can do, as well as show you how it works on a live WordPress site.
Affiliate Coupons Review: A Deeper Look at the Features
Affiliate Coupons comes in both a free version at WordPress.org, as well as a premium version with extra functionality.
Let’s start with the core functionality that’s available for free. You can:
- Create unlimited vendors with predefined affiliate links. A vendor is basically a store for which you want to offer coupons.
- Create unlimited coupons and assign those coupons to vendors.
- Use categories to organize coupons.
- Use shortcodes to insert coupons in any content (you’ll also get a page to list all the coupons for all your vendors)
The free version also comes with “click to copy” functionality, but it does not offer “click to reveal” functionality, which is what most of the big coupon sites are using nowadays.
However, if you upgrade to the Pro version, which starts at $39, you’ll get access to that conversion-boosting “click to reveal” functionality, as well as:
- View, copy, and click statistics for all your vendors/coupon codes
- More styles and templates to control how your coupons look
- The ability to feature and highlight specific coupons
- A “popular coupons” widget that you can use to showcase coupons
- Event tracking via Google or Matomo (formerly Piwik)
- An option to create dedicated, indexable pages for each coupon (can be good for SEO)
Ready to see it in action? Let’s dig in…
Going Hands-on With Affiliate Coupons
To get started, I’m going to use the free version of Affiliate Coupons from WordPress.org. So everything you see in this first section is 100% free.
Once I go through the free functionality, I’ll install the premium version and show you some of the reasons to consider going Pro.
Adding a Vendor
To get started, you’ll want to add a vendor. Again, a vendor is basically just a store for which you want to offer coupons.
Affiliate Coupons uses custom post types, so doing this is simple and should feel familiar. You just head to Vendors → Add Vendor and you can enter:
- The store name.
- An image to use on the coupon page.
- The default URL to use for all of this vendor’s coupons (you can modify this on a per-coupon basis if needed). Typically, this will be your affiliate link.
- A description for the vendor (this can help with SEO. As with the URL, you can modify this on a per-coupon basis).
Adding a Coupon
To add an actual coupon, you go to Affiliate Coupons → Add Coupon. Here, you’ll see the default WordPress editor at the top (either the block editor or TinyMCE editor, depending on your preferences):
The actual title and description don’t seem to have any frontend effect (I guess you just use them for internal organization).
Instead, you’ll use the Coupon: Details meta box to set up all the coupon’s details.
First, you’ll choose the vendor that you want to associate the coupon with. By default, the plugin will use the vendor’s information to fill in the:
However, you can also override all this information for the individual coupon. And you’ll also want to fill in the:
- Discount – text describing what deal the coupon offers.
- Discount Code – the actual coupon code people will use.
- Validity – start and stop dates for the coupon’s validity (you can automatically filter out expired coupons if you want)
Beyond that, you can also add categories and types to help organize your coupons:
And once you’re done, you just Publish it like you would a regular WordPress post.
Displaying Your Coupon Codes
To display your coupons, you’ll use shortcodes. You get shortcodes to display:
- All coupons – you can use this to create a coupon archive page – e.g. yoursite.com/coupons
- Specific coupons – for example, you could use this to insert a specific deal inside a blog post.
You can also use filter options to filter out coupons by:
For example, here’s what the basic shortcode looks like with a grid layout. Notice how, even in the free version, you get that nice “click to copy” functionality:
In total, you get three different templates in the free version – grid, standard, and list.
Or, if I were writing a blog post about WP RSS Aggregator, I could use a shortcode to include just the WP RSS Aggregator coupon. It might look something like this:
Beyond the shortcodes, you can also use dedicated widgets to display either:
- A specific coupon
- Multiple coupons from a specific category, type, vendor, etc.
If you combine this with a free plugin like Content Aware Sidebars, you could even match your coupon widgets to specific content. For example, I could set it up to automatically display the WP RSS Aggregator coupon in a widget for all posts tagged with “WP RSS Aggregator”.
Exploring the Settings
Finally, Affiliate Coupons also gives you a settings area where you can configure defaults for:
- Templates to use
- Styles – you only get one style with the free version, but the paid version adds more.
- Basic color options
- Button text to use
Reasons to Consider Purchasing Affiliate Coupons Pro
Everything you saw above is free. However, there are definitely some reasons to consider going Pro.
Let’s go through them…
Click to Reveal Functionality
In the free version, your coupon codes include “click to copy” functionality, but they’re otherwise public. That is, there’s nothing forcing someone to click on your affiliate link to use your coupon, which means you might miss out on credit for the sale.
The Pro version lets you change that with a dedicated “Click to Reveal” feature that hides the coupon until a user clicks.
When a user clicks, Affiliate Coupons will send them straight to the merchant (in a new tab) and open a popup with the code. Again, this is the exact approach that many of the top coupon sites use.
Here’s what the basic coupon layout looks like with this feature enabled:
And when someone clicks on that, it opens a new tab that takes them to the store, and also displays this well-designed popup with the code:
The functionality is quite smooth and, again, this is how a lot of big coupon sites do it.
New Templates and Styles
To control how your coupons look, you get some new templates and styles.
On the template front, you get a new Banner layout. I think this layout makes a great option for inserting coupons into posts. Here’s an example:
Beyond that, you also get new light and dark styles, as well as the ability to highlight (literally adds a yellow highlight border in the coupon list) and feature coupons (shows it at the beginning of the list).
Dedicated Coupon Pages
By default, coupons link straight to the store. That’s good for getting sales, but it means that you won’t have a chance to rank them for SEO (unless you create normal WordPress pages and use a shortcode to embed each individual coupon, which is totally doable).
With the Pro version, however, you can automatically create dedicated Coupon Pages for each coupon. You’ll then be able to index and rank these pages in Google:
View, Copy, and Click Statistics
If you want to analyze how your coupons and vendors perform, the Pro version lets you track and view analytics for:
Beyond that, you can also set up Event tracking for Google Analytics or Matamo to view that data in your analytics.
With the Pro version activated, you’ll be able to see this information in your main coupon list:
You can also disable this feature if you’d prefer not to use it for performance reasons.
Popular Coupons Widget
The Pro version adds a new Popular Coupons widget that lets you display your most popular coupons (based on those new analytics features I mentioned above).
Affiliate Coupons Pricing
Again – the premium version starts at $39 for use on a single site.
Other options are:
- $99 for use on three sites
- $199 for use on ten sites
Final Thoughts on Affiliate Coupons
I was quite impressed by Affiliate Coupons.
A few years ago, I was actually looking for a plugin that would give me a way to add nice-looking “click to reveal” coupons to my site.
At that time, I couldn’t find a good option. But now that Affiliate Coupons is out, it offers the exact functionality that I need, and I might start using it on my own site.
The designs look professional and modern right out of the box, and all the functionality worked exactly as you’d expect, especially the “click to copy” and “click to reveal” functionality.
So if you’re looking for a WordPress coupon plugin to help you generate affiliate commissions, definitely give Affiliate Coupons a look.