Discounts (v2)


A Recharge Discount allows a merchant to represent a financial promotion to its customers and potential customers. Discounts are commonly used by merchants and store owners to increase customer acquisition, provide rewards to existing customers, and assist in retaining customers. Recharge Discounts have been specifically designed for relationship commerce by allowing a merchant to create tailored promotions for its users not only at checkout but throughout the whole customer journey with the merchant. You create, apply and manage discounts programmatically (via API) or manually (via the Store Admin). These discounts can be valid according to conditions of basket value, time, customer profile and more, and can also be defined for specific offerings.



Discounts may also be referred to as “promotion codes,” “promotions,” or “coupons.”



Discounts are a great tool to represent a promotion restricted in its applications. To create a systemic promotion (e.g. subscribe & save 25%) head to the Plans page where you will find all the resources you need to define ‘how’ you sell your product.

Discount model

Discounts are a temporary reduction in the price of a product or service used to increase customer engagement and satisfaction. There are many different types of discounts that a merchant can offer customers, but it is important to remember that discounts should only be used as a temporary measure to increase customer loyalty and engagement. They are not meant to be used as a long-term strategy for customer acquisition and retention. If you want to implement a Subscribe & Save model, you should instead go to the Pricing and Plans page for more information on the different Recharge plans.

Discount applications touchpoints

Discounts can be applied at the time of checkout either manually or automatically by different types of “actors.” These can include:

  • Customers
  • Store administrator
  • 3rd party applications

There are four different touchpoints from which discounts can be applied:

  • Checkout
  • Customer Portal
  • Merchant Portal
  • Automatically

The table below shows how each of these touchpoints can be accessed by customers, merchant admins, and 3rd party apps.

Customer Portal
Quick Actions
Merchant AdminMerchant Portal UIAPI


When you are ready to apply discounts (manually or automatically), refer to the following pages for more detailed information:

  • Manually applying a discount at checkout
  • Automatically applying a discount at checkout
  • Discount structure

    We structure discounts around 3 categories:

    • Definition - what is the deal about?
    • Rules - who, how, when the deal can/should apply?
    • Usage - how much has it been applied already?

    The combination of these parts makes up a discount, however by thinking of each part separately, it becomes much easier to understand what a discount is (and isn’t), and how you may wish to use discounts in your store.


    Discounts can be broadly defined as a limited reduction in the price of a product or service. Discount definition fields allow you to specify what the deal benefits will be: $ off, % off… as well as carry audit trails and details about the promotion. Although there are different types of discounts, each has its own set of benefits. We support common types of discounts like:

    • Free shipping at checkout
    • Percentage (%) or fixed amount discount for the first order
    • Temporary promotions (Christmas, New Year…)

    And more advanced applications specific to relationship commerce:

    • Recurring discounts
    • Discount for new or existing customers

    For more detailed information about how discounts can be applied, refer to the Use Cases section of this guide.

    Discount rules

    Discount rules are great assets to define how, when and where a promotion should apply. It is a control and targeting tool to ensure your promotion reaches your target audience and application without spillage and side effects.


    Discounts can be created so they can be applied to certain products or product types in your store. By designating which products and product types are eligible for the discount redemption, you can build customer loyalty to these items while also ensuring that only orders that contain these products can have the discount applied.


    You may also apply discounts to products that have a shared definition, referred to as a “collection.” If, for example, you want to group a number of products together (e.g. personal care products) and have the discount applied to any of the items in that collection, you can enable the discount to be redeemed for any order that contains an item from that collection.


    Discounts may also be applied during specific periods of time (e.g. New Year’s Sale). When you create a discount code, you specify a start and end date for the discount. When the end date is reached, the discount enters a “disabled” state, which means that the discount will not be applied to any new orders. The discount code will, however, still be applied to any orders which have not yet been processed.

    Number of customers

    In your Merchant Portal, you can set a limit for the total number of customers across your store that can redeem a discount.


    Discounts may be set so they are applied in a specific channel. There are several channels where you may apply discounts:

    • Checkout
    • Merchant Portal
    • API
    • Customer Portal (note - this permission is only valid for Recharge-hosted portal)

    Typically, discounts are applied when a customer is directed to the checkout page; however, you may allow the customer to apply the discount themselves in their own customer portal if you wish by enabling this setting in the Recharge store admin. Discounts may also be applied using the Recharge API. For more detailed information about how discounts are managed using the Recharge API, refer to the Discounts section of the Recharge API Reference Guide.


    The number of times a discount has been applied (redemptions) is a key metric for merchants who want to have a clear picture of how the discounts are performing throughout their store. Although usage tracking functionality currently exists, detailed discussion of usage will not be included in this guide, as the Recharge redemption model is undergoing change.

    Discount lifecycle

    Every discount in Recharge has a ‘status’ that represents the stage of the lifecycle the discount is at. This status defines the availability of the discount for consumers and existing transactions, as well as its broader status in the Recharge system.

    The Recharge discount status has 3 states:

    • enabled
    • disabled
    • fully_disabled

    Discount states

    Discounts may hold any of the following three states:

    • Enabled - When a discount is in the “enabled” state, the discount is active and will be applied, providing that it is in it’s activation period. At the time of activation, you set a starting date for the discount (an end date is optional), and this is the date when the discount becomes ‘enabled.’
    • Disabled - If you have disabled the discount via the Recharge Admin Portal or API, the discount will no longer be applied to new charges. The discount will, however, remain on charges to which it has already been applied.
    • Fully disabled - The discount will no longer be applied to any charges, including queued charges.
    • Note:



    enabled means that Recharge systems and processes are to take the discount into account as an argument. Whether the discount is applicable, live or not, is defined by the rules of the discount.



    When thinking about the difference between a discount in a fully disabled state and a discount that has been deleted, it is helpful to remember the following:

    • If a discount is in a fully disabled state, it is partially reversible. This means that you can revert the discount back to an enabled state.

    • If a discount has been deleted, this action is irreversible.

    Discount flow

    Depending on whether you are applying a one-time discount to a subscription, or applying a recurring discount, the business logic consists of a number of steps that must be taken to ensure that the discount is applied correctly.

    For a detailed breakdown of the different steps required to enable a discount, please refer to the Detailed Discount Flow section of the In Depth section of this guide.

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