Then things changed real quick-like. Richard writes:
Sometime after I clicked the 10% link, but before I completed my transaction, Newegg/MS had decided to lower the cashback amount to 5%.
The problem is, there was no indication of it. And by the time I found out, my no-return item had already been shipped. On a nearly $700 order, that’s over a $30 difference. So I contacted Newegg, who was profusely apologetic, but seems to be claiming ‘technical difficulties’ and not offering any resolution other than ‘let us keep your money please':
Thank you for contacting Newegg.
We humbly apologize for the unfavorable circumstances. However, we have informed by Microsoft that we have already reached 50% of the budget allowance on the Bing 10% off cash back promotion. Therefore, the Bing banner has changed to read 5% off your order. This is being done to extend the duration of the promotion for the second half. Once we have used up 25% of the allowed funds, the discount will be changed to 2.5%. Meanwhile, Microsoft has fixed the issue with the Bing promotional banner and the promotion has resumed. We humbly apologize for the inconvenience we may have caused you and we thank you in advance for your understanding.
Further emails have only yielded variations on this theme. Microsoft also seems to be claiming technical difficulties, but has yet to offer resolution as well:
I apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.
Thank you for bringing this issue to our attention. We strive to accurately list product prices and discounts on the Bing cashback site. However, sometimes prices and/or discounts can change faster than the merchant can update our site with their new information. Our Merchant Center is currently working with all merchants to improve our processes and ensure accuracy when we list these prices.
Richard’s pestering eventually paid off:
I’ve got a positive update, from both parties. Newegg ultimately refused to take any responsibility for it, however, they ended up offering me a $15 credit on my next order. Assuming that they bear half the responsibility for the screwy promotion, I was ok with that.
After repeatedly pestering Microsoft about their side of it, they eventually had someone from their Bing Cashback escalation department cut me a check for the full cashback amount. So ultimately I’m ahead $15 at the cost of my time and frustration. To be fair, I’ve used the Bing Cashback program quite a bit, and this is the only time I had an issue with it that wasn’t resolved with a single email.
Sure, it cost Richard time and frustration, but add the gratification of the unqualified win to the $15 and it seems to have been time and frustration well spent.