Discount Card Business Plan Template

Discount Card Business Plan Template

Discount Card business plan template

Are you interested in starting your own Discount Card Business?



Starting a discount card business can be a lucrative and rewarding venture for individuals looking to enter the world of entrepreneurship. With the increasing popularity of discount cards among consumers, there is a growing demand for businesses that offer exclusive deals and savings. However, like any business endeavor, starting a discount card business requires careful planning and thorough execution. In this article, we will explore the essential steps and considerations to take when starting a discount card business, from identifying your target market to building partnerships with local businesses. Whether you are a seasoned entrepreneur or a newcomer to the business world, this guide will provide you with valuable insights and practical tips to help you successfully launch your own discount card business.

Global Market Size

The global discount card market has been experiencing significant growth in recent years. According to a report by Grand View Research, the global loyalty program market size was valued at USD 148.3 billion in 2020 and is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 19.9% from 2021 to 2028. This growth can be attributed to the increasing adoption of discount cards by businesses and consumers worldwide.

Discount cards have become a popular marketing tool for businesses of all sizes, as they offer a cost-effective way to attract new customers and retain existing ones. These cards provide customers with exclusive discounts and offers, encouraging them to make repeat purchases and develop loyalty towards a particular brand or store. As a result, businesses are leveraging discount cards to enhance customer engagement and drive sales.

The global market for discount cards is not limited to any specific industry or geographical region. It spans across various sectors such as retail, hospitality, e-commerce, travel, and more. With the rise of online shopping and the growing popularity of e-commerce platforms, discount cards have become even more prevalent, as businesses aim to stand out in the competitive digital landscape.

In terms of geography, North America held the largest market share in 2020, driven by the presence of well-established retail chains and a high adoption rate of loyalty programs. However, the Asia Pacific region is expected to witness the highest growth rate during the forecast period. This growth can be attributed to the increasing consumer spending power, rapid urbanization, and the rising popularity of e-commerce platforms in countries like China and India.

The global market size for discount cards presents immense opportunities for entrepreneurs looking to start their own discount card business. By tapping into this growing market, entrepreneurs can offer innovative solutions to businesses seeking to enhance customer loyalty and boost sales. Additionally, with advancements in technology and the increasing use of mobile applications, entrepreneurs can leverage digital platforms to create and manage discount card programs, further expanding their market reach.

Overall, the global market size for discount cards is on a steady rise, driven by the increasing demand from businesses and consumers alike. As businesses continue to prioritize customer retention and engagement, discount cards will remain a vital tool in their marketing strategies. Entrepreneurs venturing into the discount card business can capitalize on this growing market, offering unique and value-added solutions to businesses and helping them build long-term customer relationships.

Target Market

Target Market

The target market for a discount card business can vary depending on the specific types of discounts offered and the geographical location of the business. However, there are several key groups that are likely to be interested in purchasing discount cards:

1. Consumers: The primary target market for discount card businesses is consumers who are looking to save money on their everyday purchases. This can include individuals and families on a tight budget, students, seniors, and anyone who wants to make their money go further. Discount cards can be particularly appealing to cost-conscious individuals who frequently shop at specific retailers or use particular services.

2. Small businesses: Another potential target market for discount card businesses is small local businesses. These businesses may be interested in partnering with the discount card company to offer exclusive discounts to cardholders, as a way to attract new customers and increase sales. Small businesses can include restaurants, cafes, boutiques, salons, spas, gyms, and other local service providers.

3. Non-profit organizations: Discount card businesses can also target non-profit organizations such as schools, sports teams, clubs, and community groups. These organizations can sell the discount cards as a fundraising initiative, allowing supporters to save money while also supporting a good cause. Discount card companies can offer customized cards with the organization's logo or branding to enhance the fundraising efforts.

4. Online shoppers: With the rise of online shopping, there is a growing market for discount cards that offer exclusive deals and discounts for popular online retailers. This target market includes individuals who frequently shop online and are looking for ways to save money on their purchases. Discount card businesses can partner with online retailers to offer unique discount codes or cashback incentives for cardholders.

5. Travelers and tourists: Discount card businesses can also target travelers and tourists who are looking to save money on their accommodations, transportation, attractions, and dining experiences. These cards can provide discounts and special offers for popular tourist destinations, hotels, rental car companies, restaurants, and entertainment venues. This target market can include both domestic and international travelers.

It is important for discount card businesses to conduct market research and identify the specific needs and preferences of their target market. This will help in developing a marketing strategy that effectively reaches and engages potential customers. Additionally, leveraging social media, online advertising, and partnerships with local businesses can be effective in promoting the discount card business to the target market.

Business Model

Business Models for a Discount Card Business

When starting a discount card business, it is essential to choose a business model that aligns with your goals, target market, and available resources. Here are a few business models commonly used in the discount card industry:

1. Membership Subscription Model: Under this model, customers pay a monthly or annual subscription fee to access a range of discounts and deals offered by partnering businesses. The discount card business acts as an intermediary between customers and local businesses, negotiating exclusive discounts for its members. This model offers recurring revenue and encourages customer loyalty, as subscribers have an ongoing incentive to continue using the discount card.

2. Advertising and Partnerships Model: In this model, the discount card business generates revenue by partnering with local businesses and charging them advertising fees or commissions for each customer referred. The discount card acts as a marketing tool for these businesses, attracting new customers and driving sales. This model requires building strong relationships with local businesses and continuously expanding the partner network to offer a wide variety of discounts.

3. E-commerce Model: With the rise of online shopping, some discount card businesses have adopted an e-commerce model. In this model, the business sells discount cards online, either through its website or third-party platforms. Customers can purchase and instantly access digital discount cards, allowing them to redeem discounts at partner businesses both online and offline. This model offers convenience and scalability, as the discount cards can be sold to customers worldwide.

4. Affiliate Marketing Model: Under this model, the discount card business earns commissions by promoting products or services from partner businesses. Customers receive the discount card for free or at a minimal cost, and the business monetizes its platform by earning a percentage of the sales generated through its affiliate links. This model requires effective marketing strategies to drive traffic to the discount card website and convert visitors into buyers.

5. White Label or Franchise Model: For entrepreneurs who prefer not to start from scratch, the white label or franchise model offers the opportunity to partner with an established discount card business. This model allows you to leverage an existing brand, operational processes, and supplier relationships. In exchange for a fee or revenue sharing, you can benefit from their expertise, resources, and support to launch your discount card business under their brand.

When choosing a business model for your discount card venture, consider factors such as your target market, competition, available capital, and personal preferences. It is important to conduct market research and evaluate the viability and profitability of each model before making a final decision. Remember, the chosen business model should align with your long-term goals and provide a sustainable path to success in the discount card industry.

Competitive Landscape

The discount card business is a competitive industry with various players targeting different market segments. To successfully start and thrive in this business, it is crucial to understand the competitive landscape and identify key players in the market. Here are some of the main players in the discount card industry:

1. National Discount Card Networks: These are the largest and most well-known discount card providers that operate on a national or even international scale. Companies like Entertainment, Groupon, and LivingSocial offer discount cards that provide savings on a wide range of products and services, including dining, entertainment, travel, and retail. They typically partner with local businesses to offer deals and discounts to their cardholders.

2. Local Discount Card Providers: Many local or regional discount card providers focus on specific cities or regions, offering discounts and deals from local businesses. These providers often have a better understanding of the local market and can offer more personalized and tailored discounts. Examples include CitySaver, Local Flavor, and Clipper Magazine.

3. Membership-Based Discount Clubs: These are membership-based programs that offer exclusive discounts and deals to their members. Examples include Costco, Sam's Club, and AAA. These clubs often have a wide range of benefits beyond just discounts, such as access to bulk purchasing, travel services, and roadside assistance.

4. Niche Discount Card Providers: Some discount card providers focus on specific niches or industries. For example, there are discount cards specifically designed for seniors, students, military personnel, or specific professions like teachers or healthcare workers. These niche providers can offer targeted discounts and benefits that cater to the unique needs of their target audience.

5. Digital Coupon Platforms: With the rise of digitalization, many coupon platforms have emerged that offer digital discount codes and coupons that can be accessed through mobile apps or websites. Examples include RetailMeNot,, and Honey. These platforms allow users to search for discounts by category or store, making it convenient to find and use discounts.

6. Traditional Advertising Channels: While not exclusively discount card providers, traditional advertising channels like newspapers, magazines, and coupon books often include discount offers from local businesses. These publications can be a source of competition, especially in smaller towns or communities where digital platforms may be less prevalent.

7. Competing Technologies: In addition to traditional discount cards, other technologies like mobile wallets and digital payment platforms are also entering the discount space. These technologies allow users to access and redeem discounts directly through their smartphones, eliminating the need for physical cards. Examples include Apple Wallet, Google Pay, and mobile apps developed by specific businesses.

Understanding the competitive landscape is essential for developing a unique value proposition and identifying opportunities for differentiation in the discount card business. By analyzing the strengths and weaknesses of existing players, you can position your discount card business to stand out and capture a specific target market.

Legal and Regulatory Requirements

Legal and Regulatory Requirements for Starting a Discount Card Business

Before launching a discount card business, it is essential to understand and comply with the legal and regulatory requirements imposed by the relevant authorities. These requirements may vary depending on the jurisdiction in which you plan to operate. Here are some key considerations to keep in mind:

1. Business Registration: The first step in starting any business is to register your company with the appropriate government agency. This typically involves choosing a business structure, such as a sole proprietorship, partnership, or limited liability company (LLC), and filing the necessary paperwork with the local business registration office or Secretary of State.

2. Licenses and Permits: Depending on your location, you may need to obtain specific licenses and permits to operate a discount card business legally. These requirements can vary greatly, so it is crucial to research and comply with all local, state, and federal regulations. Common licenses and permits may include a general business license, sales tax permit, and any specific licenses related to the sale of discounted products or services.

3. Consumer Protection Laws: Discount card businesses involve selling products or services at a reduced price to consumers. Therefore, understanding and adhering to consumer protection laws is crucial. Familiarize yourself with regulations related to advertising, product labeling, fair pricing, and any other laws that may apply to your specific business model.

4. Privacy and Data Protection: If your discount card business collects and stores customer information, it is essential to comply with data protection and privacy laws. This may include obtaining consent from customers to collect their personal information, implementing secure data storage practices, and ensuring compliance with any applicable privacy regulations.

5. Intellectual Property: When creating a discount card business, it is important to respect and protect the intellectual property rights of others. Avoid using trademarked logos or copyrighted materials without permission, as this could lead to legal disputes and potential liability. Conduct proper research to ensure your business name, logo, and other branding elements do not infringe upon existing trademarks or copyrights.

6. Employment Laws: If you plan to hire employees for your discount card business, be sure to familiarize yourself with local employment laws. These may include minimum wage requirements, proper employee classification (e.g., full-time, part-time, contractor), workplace safety regulations, and other employment-related obligations.

7. Tax Obligations: As a business owner, you will likely have various tax obligations, including income tax, sales tax, and potentially payroll tax. Consult with a tax professional or accountant to ensure you understand and comply with all relevant tax laws and reporting requirements.

Remember, this is not an exhaustive list of legal and regulatory requirements for starting a discount card business. It is essential to consult with legal professionals or business advisors who can provide guidance specific to your jurisdiction and business model. By complying with these requirements, you can establish a legally sound discount card business and avoid potential legal issues in the future.

Financing Options

Financing Options for Starting a Discount Card Business

Starting a discount card business can be an exciting venture, but like any business, it requires capital to get off the ground. If you are looking for financing options to fund your discount card business, here are several avenues you can explore:

1. Personal Savings: One of the most common ways entrepreneurs finance their businesses is through personal savings. If you have been saving money over time, consider using those funds to cover the initial costs of starting your discount card business. This option allows you to retain full control over your business and avoid taking on debt.

2. Friends and Family: Another option is to reach out to your network of friends and family for financial support. They may be willing to invest in your business or provide a loan to help you get started. Just ensure that you have a clear repayment plan and legal documentation in place to protect both parties' interests.

3. Small Business Loans: Many financial institutions offer small business loans specifically tailored to entrepreneurs. These loans typically have competitive interest rates and flexible repayment terms. To secure a loan, you will need to prepare a comprehensive business plan, financial projections, and demonstrate your ability to repay the loan.

4. Crowdfunding: Crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter and Indiegogo have become popular ways for entrepreneurs to raise funds for their business ideas. By creating a compelling campaign and offering rewards or incentives to backers, you can tap into a large pool of potential investors who are interested in supporting innovative ventures.

5. Grants and Competitions: Various organizations and government agencies offer grants and competitions aimed at supporting small businesses and startups. These funding opportunities often come with specific requirements and criteria, so make sure to research and apply to those that align with your discount card business.

6. Angel Investors and Venture Capitalists: Angel investors and venture capitalists are individuals or firms that invest in early-stage businesses in exchange for equity or ownership stakes. These investors typically provide not only funding but also valuable expertise and industry connections. However, attracting angel investors or venture capitalists may require a solid business plan and a compelling pitch.

7. Franchise Opportunities: If you are interested in starting a discount card business but lack the initial capital, you may consider exploring franchise opportunities. Franchising allows you to leverage an established brand and business model, often with access to financing options provided by the franchisor.

When considering financing options, it is essential to evaluate your business's financial needs and create a realistic budget. Additionally, be prepared to provide documentation, such as business plans and financial statements, to potential lenders or investors. Lastly, consider seeking advice from a financial advisor or business mentor who can guide you through the process and help you choose the best financing option for your discount card business.

Marketing and Sales Strategies

Marketing and Sales Strategies

To successfully launch and grow your discount card business, it is crucial to have effective marketing and sales strategies in place. Here are some key strategies to consider:

1. Identify Target Market: Begin by identifying your target market, which could include individuals, families, students, or specific groups such as seniors or veterans. Understanding your target audience will help you tailor your marketing efforts and create a compelling value proposition.

2. Develop a Strong Brand: Create a strong brand image for your discount card business that resonates with your target market. This includes designing a professional logo, developing a catchy tagline, and creating a consistent visual identity across all marketing materials.

3. Build Relationships with Merchants: Establishing partnerships with local businesses is crucial for the success of your discount card business. Approach potential merchants and highlight the benefits they will gain by participating in your program, such as increased foot traffic and exposure to new customers. Offer them competitive rates or incentives to join your network.

4. Leverage Online Marketing: In today's digital age, online marketing is essential for any business. Utilize social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to create awareness about your discount card program. Share engaging content, promote special offers, and encourage customers to share their experiences with your card. Additionally, create a user-friendly website that showcases the benefits of your discount card and provides a seamless online purchasing experience.

5. Implement Referral Programs: Word-of-mouth marketing can be a powerful tool for your discount card business. Encourage existing cardholders to refer their friends, family, and colleagues by offering them incentives such as discounts or rewards for each successful referral. This will help you expand your customer base and increase sales.

6. Collaborate with Local Organizations: Partnering with local organizations, such as schools, non-profit institutions, or community centers, can help you gain credibility and reach a wider audience. Offer them a percentage of the proceeds from your discount card sales as a fundraising opportunity, and in return, they can promote your business to their members or supporters.

7. Offer Limited-Time Promotions: Create a sense of urgency and excitement by offering limited-time promotions, such as discounted annual membership fees or exclusive deals with select merchants. This will entice potential customers to take immediate action and increase the perceived value of your discount card.

8. Provide Excellent Customer Service: Delivering exceptional customer service is crucial for building trust and loyalty with your cardholders. Train your staff to handle customer inquiries promptly and professionally, and consider implementing a loyalty program to reward repeat customers.

9. Monitor and Analyze Results: Regularly monitor and analyze the effectiveness of your marketing and sales strategies. Track metrics such as customer acquisition rates, card activation rates, and merchant participation levels to identify areas for improvement and make data-driven decisions.

By implementing these marketing and sales strategies, you can effectively promote your discount card business, attract a loyal customer base, and drive sales growth. Remember to continuously adapt and refine your strategies based on customer feedback and market trends to stay ahead of the competition.

Operations and Logistics

Operations and Logistics

Starting a discount card business requires careful planning and efficient operations to ensure the smooth running of the business. Here are some key factors to consider when it comes to operations and logistics:

1. Supplier Management: As a discount card business, you will need to establish partnerships with various businesses and retailers to offer exclusive discounts to your customers. This involves negotiating agreements, managing relationships, and continuously sourcing new partners. Keep in mind that your success will heavily depend on the attractiveness and variety of the discounts you can offer.

2. Card Production: To create your discount cards, you will need to partner with a card printing company. Consider the design and quality of the cards, as they will reflect the image and professionalism of your business. Additionally, it is important to have an efficient system in place for ordering, tracking, and distributing the cards to your customers.

3. Website and Mobile App Development: In today's digital age, having an online presence is essential for any business. Developing a user-friendly website and mobile app will allow your customers to easily access and redeem the discounts offered by your partners. It is crucial to invest in a reliable and secure platform to ensure a seamless user experience.

4. Membership and Customer Relationship Management: Implementing a membership system is crucial for managing your customer base and offering personalized discounts. This requires the development or integration of a customer relationship management (CRM) system to track customer information, preferences, and purchasing habits. A well-managed CRM system will enable you to engage with your customers effectively and tailor your discounts to their needs.

5. Order Fulfillment and Delivery: If you offer physical discount cards, you will need to establish an efficient process for order fulfillment and delivery. This includes inventory management, packaging, shipping, and tracking. Timely delivery is essential to maintain customer satisfaction and loyalty.

6. Customer Support: Providing excellent customer support is vital to ensuring customer satisfaction and resolving any issues or inquiries they may have. This can be done through various channels, such as email, phone, or live chat. Setting up a dedicated support team or outsourcing this function to a reliable service provider will help you maintain a positive reputation and retain customers.

7. Analytics and Reporting: Establishing a system to track and analyze data is essential for understanding the performance of your discount card business. This includes monitoring sales, customer behavior, and partner performance. Utilizing analytics and reporting tools will provide valuable insights to optimize your business operations and make informed decisions.

In summary, efficient operations and logistics are crucial for the success of a discount card business. By effectively managing your suppliers, producing high-quality cards, developing a user-friendly online platform, implementing a CRM system, optimizing order fulfillment and delivery, providing excellent customer support, and utilizing analytics, you can ensure the smooth running of your business and deliver a valuable service to your customers.

Human Resources & Management

Human Resources and Management

As you embark on starting your discount card business, it is crucial to establish a strong human resources (HR) and management strategy. Building a capable team and implementing effective management practices will be instrumental in the success and growth of your business. Here are some key considerations to keep in mind:

1. Determine your staffing needs: Begin by assessing the various roles and positions required to run your discount card business efficiently. Consider positions such as sales representatives, customer service agents, marketing specialists, and administrative staff. Determine the number of individuals needed for each role based on the scale of your operations and projected growth.

2. Recruit and hire the right talent: Develop a comprehensive recruitment strategy to attract qualified candidates for each position. Utilize online job boards, social media platforms, and professional networks to advertise job openings. Conduct thorough interviews, reference checks, and background screenings to ensure you select individuals who align with your company's values, have the required skills, and possess a strong work ethic.

3. Provide comprehensive training: Once you have assembled your team, invest in comprehensive training programs to equip your employees with the necessary knowledge and skills to perform their roles effectively. This may include training on sales techniques, customer service, product knowledge, and software systems. Ongoing training and professional development opportunities should also be provided to keep your team updated on industry trends and to foster continuous growth.

4. Foster a positive work culture: Create a work environment that promotes collaboration, open communication, and mutual respect. Encourage teamwork and establish clear channels for feedback and suggestions from employees. Recognize and reward outstanding performance to boost morale and motivation. A positive work culture will not only help retain valuable employees but also attract new talent to your discount card business.

5. Implement effective management practices: As a business owner, it is essential to establish strong management practices to guide your team and ensure smooth operations. Set clear expectations and goals for each employee, providing regular feedback and performance evaluations. Establish efficient communication channels between management and staff to address concerns, provide guidance, and promote transparency. Implement robust systems and processes to streamline workflows and optimize productivity.

6. Stay compliant with labor laws: Familiarize yourself with labor laws and regulations applicable to your business, including minimum wage requirements, working hours, and employee benefits. Ensure that your HR policies and practices are in compliance with these laws to avoid legal issues in the future.

7. Plan for growth and succession: As your discount card business expands, plan for future growth by identifying individuals within your team who have the potential to take on leadership roles. Develop succession plans and provide opportunities for professional development to groom future managers. This will ensure a smooth transition and maintain the continuity of operations as your business continues to grow.

In conclusion, a well-structured HR and management strategy is vital for the success of your discount card business. By recruiting the right talent, providing comprehensive training, fostering a positive work culture, implementing effective management practices, and planning for growth, you can build a strong and capable team that will help drive the success of your business.