A Discount Coupons or Promotional website like Groupon, RetailMeNot or Coupons, provides a consolidated list of deals or offers, to visitors or registered members. Such kind of websites do not sell anything on their own site, but they promote offers from other e-commerce websites. The idea is simple, a visitor or member can see shopping deals available on various websites, or has access to coupons, which he can use to avail a discount on items purchased.
Creating a Coupons Website on WordPress
There are many themes built for promotional deals and coupons websites, but the best one out there is the Clipper theme.
The Clipper Theme has numerous features like advanced link cloaking for affiliate marketing, easy categorization options, various styling options, payment gateway integration etc. The theme allows submission of coupons and addition of retail stores.
Fetching Coupons and Deals from a Custom Source
Many deal aggregator websites, like 8coupons or CityDeals, offer APIs to retrieve deal or retailer information. You will need to sign up for an API key or ID, which you can use to retrieve information. To import this information, you will need a custom solution, compatible with the Clipper theme, which will fetch the response from the API call, and display it as vouchers or deals, on your Coupons website.
The Clipper theme already has a custom post type Coupon, which makes it simple to convert and display the received information. The custom solution would have to do the following:
The solution will have a settings page, where you will have to enter and save the key or ID. The importer will then send a GET request on the API, for the retailers and voucher or deals details and store it.
Using the response from the APIs, deals or promotional information can be set up as ‘Coupons’, and retailer information can be set up as ‘Stores’ in the Clipper Theme.
Some validation has to be made before creating coupons. For example, the same coupon cannot be created twice. If a coupon already exists and has not expired, another coupon with the same offer cannot be created. Duplicate store records should not be created either.
The click out URL for every coupon, should contain the deal offer. The solution should take care of inserting the coupon code or id, into the click out URL so that the offer can be availed.
The solution will also set a cron job, to automatically schedule requests.
Additional customizations can also be made in the solution settings, like different labels for vouchers and deals.