Last fall, we posted a handy cheat sheet to price tag codes that can tell you whether an item is on its first or last markdown, or even whether it’s on clearance or just plain on sale. Want to learn some more codes? Of course you do!
Every store and every industry has its own cycle of sales, and by timing your purchases just right, you can take advantage of them. There are two different things to keep track of: the ways that sales cycle every year, and also current trends in retail. [More]
Our price-tracking colleagues down the hall at Consumer Reports keep track of when the best discounts appear on a variety of items. As we get ready to flip over the calendar page to celebrate May, what will you be able to find the best deals on in the coming month? [More]
When you’re shopping online, you probably perform a cursory search online to find out whether the e-retailer you’re about to buy from has any coupons available online. Sites for sharing coupon codes like RetailMeNot are great to check quickly. What should you do if your search comes up empty? Don’t despair. Like brick-and-mortar retailers, online stores might have your back when you don’t bring your own coupons. [More]
How much of a discount should a store place on an item for it to really matter? One cent? One dollar? Does the branding of a “stock up” sale matter when the item on sale is something that you shouldn’t really keep stockpiled in the first place? These are the questions that we ponder here at Consumerist HQ when we read your submissions. [More]
Pet owners: if you had a 25% coupon code for Petco, what would you load your cart up with? Food? Litter? Toys? Treats? If you’re using a current coupon that the retailer has for online shoppers, only half of those things are eligible for the discount. Oh, boo. [More]
Smartphone repairs can get quite pricey, so shoppers in Orange County, Florida thought that a Groupon deal where they paid $42 for a voucher that got them half-price repairs was a pretty good deal. It would have been…if the company would give them their phones back. [More]
Traditionally, “Black Friday” refers to the day after Thanksgiving and the semi-official kickoff of the winter holiday shopping season in the United States. In modern times, however, traditions are meaningless and retailers have decided to just throw Black Friday sales whenever they want. Like July 12. Or even February. [More]
What’s that, you say? People just aren’t flocking to athletic equipment endorsed by Lance Armstrong since he admitted that his professional cycling career was full of doping and lies? That makes sense. That’s bad news if you’re Dick’s Sporting Goods, and half of the pricey fitness equipment you sell is Livestrong-branded. It is, however, great news for consumers. [More]
What happens when you divide by zero on a cash register? You can’t. Kim found something about as confusing while shopping at Michaels recently: a clearance sale that doesn’t apply to clearance items, including the item that she wanted to buy. [More]
Ann bought a coffeemaker for her mother for Christmas, which was very thoughtful. She got a great deal on it from Overstock.com, which was very savvy of her. Now she’s had to buy a more expensive replacement coffeemaker from a brick-and-mortar store, which was very irritating. Overstock, you see, has had some problems getting items to customers. The e-tailer first notified her that her package had been stolen. Cool: no hurry. Then the replacement package went missing, too. [More]
Petco had a really fun promotion this past Saturday. Customers printed out a coupon from the retailer’s site, and scanned it at the checkout. Customers wouldn’t know the total value of their coupon until it was scanned. This sounds really fun, doesn’t it? Only there was a flaw. Only four barcodes for the coupons existed, and customers who clicked on the “mystery” coupon link would receive one of the four. It didn’t take long for customers to figure out which of the codes was for a 50% off coupon and head to Petco to stock up on essentials for their critters. Thus began a very, very bad day to be a Petco employee.
Yes, yes, we know: You just need to check the score of the game really quickly or maybe your sister-in-law finally put up some new pictures of the baby. And oh, let’s just take a second to Instagram this artfully designed plate! But come on, do you really need to have your phone out at the restaurant? Perhaps a little incentive would convince you to put it away, like the 5% discount an L.A. eatery is offering to diners for not using digital devices at the table.
Consumers are so literal-minded. We see a sign that says “all items $1,” and we foolishly believe that all items cost $1. Marketers take advantage of these tendencies with signage trickery and cruel, cruel asterisks. That’s what Andrey found at a Party City store. “It’s neither [all] on sale, nor does it make any sense,” he typed on his phone.
UPDATE: As the day has gone on (and it creeps closer and closer to the 7 p.m. deadline in each successive time zone), we’re hearing gripes from the Slurpee-hungry public who showed up at their local 7-Eleven only to be greeted by the bad news that enough of the headache-inducing delight had been given out for the day.