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How to Smartly Exclude Collections from Discounts on Shopify

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    Entaice Braintrust

Hey there!

So, you've been dabbling with your Shopify store and stumbled upon a bit of a puzzle—how to exclude certain collections from a discount rule, right? Maybe you've got some premium products that rarely go on sale, or perhaps it's a collection that already has razor-thin margins. Regardless, you want to keep them away from your store-wide discounts without a lot of fuss.

Let’s walk through why this might be really critical for your business and how you can set it up without needing to be a tech wizard.

Why Exclude Certain Collections?

Imagine you own a store that sells a mix of items including high-end electronics and everyday gadgets. It's Black Friday, and you decide to run a store-wide sale. However, your high-end electronics are brand exclusives with pricing controls or simply too expensive to discount deeply. Here, excluding these premium items from the overarching discounts can save your margins or maintain brand agreements.

Getting to Know Shopify’s Discount Features

Shopify’s discount feature is pretty neat for running promotions, but tweaking it to exclude specific collections needs a little creativity. Here’s how you do it.

Step 1: Understand Your Inventory Structure

Before diving into any technical setup, make sure you have a clear structure of your collections. Which are the ones you want to exclude? Are they clearly defined in your Shopify admin? Knowing this helps speed up the process significantly.

Step 2: Creating Manual Discount Codes

Here’s a straightforward method:

  1. Go to your Shopify admin. This is your command center.
  2. Navigate to Discounts and select ‘Create discount’ and then ‘Discount code’. This method revolves around creating specific codes rather than an automatic discount.
  3. Set up the discount details. Input your discount value (percentage or fixed amount).
  4. Under ‘Applies to’, select ‘Specific collections’. This allows you to choose which collections the discount should apply to rather than applying it store-wide.
  5. Select the collections you want the discount to apply to, but here’s the kicker: you’re deliberately not choosing the collections you want to exclude.

This method works well if you have a limited number of collections to include and a few to exclude.

Step 3: Leveraging Automatic Discounts Carefully

If you prefer automatic discounts (those that apply automatically at checkout and don’t require a code), the setup is a bit trickier because Shopify doesn’t directly support excluding specific collections in automatic discounts.

Here’s a workaround:

  1. Create an automatic discount for your store.
  2. Simultaneously, adjust the prices of the items in the collections you wish to exclude just before the discount period and reset them afterward. This is manual but effective.

Step 4: Use Tags and Conditions

Another clever hack involves using product tags:

  1. Tag products in the collections you want to exclude with something unique like ‘no-discount’.
  2. Create a discount code as described earlier, but under the conditions set it to exclude products tagged ‘no-discount’.

This method requires a bit of upkeep with tagging but is incredibly flexible for sales that encompass most of your store.

Step 5: Third-Party Apps

If tweaking tags and manually changing prices sounds too cumbersome, there’s a plethora of Shopify apps out there designed to offer more granular control over discounts:

  • Locksmith: This app can lock certain products or collections based on a variety of conditions, including whether a discount code is used.
  • Bold Discounts: Known for dynamic pricing, this app can exclude specific products or collections without needing to manually adjust prices.

Pro Tips for Managing Discounts on Shopify

  • Stay organized: Keep your collections well organized and maintain a clear list of which are discount-inclusive and which are not.
  • Communicate clearly: Whatever method you choose, make sure your customers know what’s on sale and what isn’t. Transparency builds trust.
  • Monitor performance: Observe how different tactics affect your sales and customer behavior. Maybe certain exclusions don’t make much difference, or perhaps they’re crucial for your profit margins.


Knowing how to exclude certain collections from discounts isn’t just a technical skill—it's about strategically controlling your product pricing and promotion to align with your business goals. Remember, the key is in the setup. Get it right, and you can manage your promotions much more effectively, steering clear of unwanted discount leaks and preserving the value of your premium offerings.

Feel free to give these methods a shot and see what aligns best with your operational style and business needs. Happy selling!