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Global Concept Global Concept
Thessaloniki, Greece 9:07 PM
Thessaloniki, Greece
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Web Development March 27, 2024

Unleashing the Power of MySQL for Efficient Coupon Generation

Unleashing the Power of MySQL for Efficient Coupon Generation

At Global Concept, we're no strangers to thinking outside the box. But sometimes, it's the most underused features of our familiar tools that help us navigate challenging tasks. This was the case when we were approached by a client to generate millions of unique coupon codes. Using MySQL's Auto Increment functionality, we were able to create an efficient and robust solution that not only met, but exceeded, our client's expectations. In this blog post, we'll detail how we used MySQL and a bit of creative problem-solving to achieve this.

The Challenge

Our client required the generation of millions of unique coupons, each consisting of 5-10 alphanumeric capital letters. Two major concerns surfaced: ensuring each coupon's uniqueness and efficiently fetching a coupon from the database.

The Solution: Our Innovative Approach

Our solution was built upon MySQL's Auto Increment functionality. We used it to generate a unique integer ID for every coupon that was created. To do this, we added an auto incrementing primary INT ID column to our coupons table. The ID counter started at 100,000, allowing MySQL to handle the ID generation and ensuring each coupon had a unique identifier.

We then created a unique Base24 numbering system, using all the English alphabet except for 'I' and 'O', as these can easily be mistaken for '1' and '0'. This numbering system converted the auto incremented ID into our Base24 system. For example, an ID of '108294' translates to 'HWAG' in our Base24 system.

To fulfill the requirement of a 5-10 character alphanumeric coupon code, we padded our Base24 number with randomly generated numbers and the omitted 'I' and 'O' characters. This provided thousands of possibilities, such as '1HOWAG' or 'HWIAG9', all of which correspond to the same Base24 number 'HWAG' in the right order.

The next step was to store this newly generated coupon code into our database, alongside the corresponding MySQL ID.

When a user inputs a coupon code like ' HWIAG9', we simply strip the unused characters, leaving us with 'HWAG'. Converting it back to Base10 gives us '108294'. By referencing this ID, we can fetch the corresponding row from our database swiftly and compare the stored coupon code with the user's input.

The Result

The result was a high-performing coupon generation system that was capable of producing millions of unique codes, each fetchable instantly from the database. Not only did we meet the challenge head-on, but we also leveraged a feature often overlooked in MySQL to our advantage, further showcasing our commitment to innovative problem-solving at Global Concept.


At Global Concept, we don’t just aim to solve problems - we aim to do so creatively and efficiently. The unique challenges presented by this project allowed us to push the boundaries of standard MySQL functionality and engineer a solution that was as unique as it was effective. We thrive on such opportunities to apply our technical prowess and innovative thinking, and we're always excited about the next challenge. Feel free to get in touch with us if you're interested in hearing more about our work or discussing a project.

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