The other day I read this essay on PennLive about things that the author didn’t want to see in 2013. I’m mimicking her idea with my list of things I don’t want to see in 2013, as it pertains to coupons, deals and frugal living.
Go Away: The Extreme Couponing TV Show-Let’s face it, let’s call a spade a spade. “That TV show” is not a bunch of die-hard couponers who wheel and deal their way to free stuff like we do. A good bit of it is coupon fraud with fraudulent coupons. The other part, the part that is somewhat legit–they pre-arranged with the store ahead of time to forego their limits and ignore their store policies on things like overage. And, you have ruined it for the rest of us, those that do coupon legitimately. I’ve never liked that show, sigh.
Go Away: Restrictive wording on coupons-”This coupon can only be redeemed on the second Tuesday of each month….” It’s really getting that ridiculous, isn’t it? A word to marketers who put out the couponers–the cheats are always going to cheat, you’re just making it harder for the good shoppers and families who really want to buy your product and use coupons to save money. You’re not preventing fraud, you’re losing good customers.
Go Away: Employees that don’t know their own store’s policy-It doesn’t happen often, but it does happen. No, the customer isn’t always right, but sometimes we actually do know your coupon policy better than you do. And that’s ok, you don’t have to be a jerk about it.
Go Away: Really lame offers disguised as great sales-10% off is not a great deal. Neither is a a good sale on an item if I have to pay $12 in S&H. And my favorite deal to dislike–Buy one, get one at 50% off (Pssst-we’re not idiots, we understand that’s only really 25% off, which isn’t anything to write home about). You’re not fooling anyone, so just put out a good deal and you’ll probably find yourself with more customers. Putting out lame offers disguised as good deals only makes your customers go away and trust you less, because we feel duped.
Go Away: Discussion over nexus laws-As my grandmother used to say-Pi$$ or get off the pot. Fish or cut bait. Make a freaking decision, either you’re going to keep us on as affiliates or you’re not. But make a decision. Bloggers are business people too and we need to do our own business plans.
Go Away: shrinking packaging-You’re not fooling us. We know that a box mac & cheese used to be 10 oz, now it’s down to 5.5. A “half gallon” of ice cream is not even close to that anymore.
I want to see: More real freebies-I miss the days of getting a good old-fashioned freebie from couponing. Want to get some internet buzz about your store or product? Then throw us a bone once in a while, it won’t bankrupt you–it creates excitement and business. I don’t want a free trial sized anything, pffft, what a huge disappointment. I want a good freebie.
I want to see: More free and cheap shipping-Follow L.L.Bean’s lead of free shipping all the time. If you’re a small business that afford that, at least make it cheaper. Anything over $5 or so for shipping, and I’m out.
I want to see: More truth in labeling-from GMOs to regulation of what classifies as “healthy” or “nutritious,” I want to know what I’m buying. I don’t want to have to read all the fine print of every label while I’m shopping.
I want to see: More quality items-I really dislike this “disposable society” that we’ve become. It’s bad for the economy, bad for the environment, bad for teaching our kids values about appreciating what you have and taking care of things. I want small appliances and items that are worth repairing, clothes that I can wear for several years and it won’t be trashed and lose shape after two washes. I want toys that I can keep and clean and maintain and resell. I’m so tired of the crappy Old Navy clothing and dollar store type crap that is floating around our world and taking up space in landfills.
I want to see: utility bills that make sense-We dropped Comcast earlier this year because our bill went up by a few bucks every other month. How about putting all bills in plain language? And tell us what the cost will be–not $79 a month for Fios, but then we’re going to tack on $30 worth of fees.
I want to see: more real food-the epitome (in my opinion) of how bad it’s gotten–Mio. Does anyone even drink that crap? Have you read the ingredients? Why not just drink motor oil or antifreeze or varnish? I want to feed my kids real food, not something that will mummify them into the next ice age.
So let’s hear it from you–what do you want to go away in 2013 and what do you want to see more of?