Support Group for Stupid Coupon Shoppers

Sometimes I wish there was such a thing as a support group for people who make stupid coupon shopping mistakes. It would have to be anonymous though to accommodate people who work at cash back deal sites (not naming any names), and even though they eat sleep and breathe deals 8-10 hours a day, still make dumb deal hunting habits a frequent occurrence.

Is there a deal hunter alive on this planet who hasn’t made a stupid–or lazy–mistake at one time or another that resulted in paying a higher price than necessary?

I’ve done it twice, THIS WEEK, and it’s been frustrating me to the point that I broke down and confessed it this morning to my co-worker, Ann, who confessed to me a shopping sin she committed last night. It seems we’re not alone in our do-do-brain deal hunting fumbles.

Top 10 Dummy Deal Hunting Mistakes:

I asked, Kim, my go-to deal hunting diva for her tips, and she gave me a few recommendations!

  1. Missing out on a great deal because you waited to buy it.

  2. Not adding in the coupon/promo code to your shopping cart, or assuming a coupon/promo codes is dead before you try it yourself. (Remember coupon/promo codes are often case sensitive)
  3. Forgetting to click-through the cash back link before you buy.
  4. Having a case of ADOS (Attention Deficit Ooh Shiny) while making a purchase and interrupting the shopping session. Most common misdemeanors are: closing the window, turning off cookies, answering a notification on Facebook, clicking a pop-up, etc.
  5. Not waiting for your order confirmation page before closing, some checkouts are long than others; don’t just assume you are done until it is confirmed!
  6. Returning something which alters your original order and voids the Cash Back.
  7. Ordering something from your cell phone; tracking links and mobile browsers don’t always play nicely together.
  8. Making frequent, small purchases that aren’t enough on their own to meet the free shipping minimum, consolidate your shopping trips!
  9. Forgetting to use your rewards credit card or store gift card when paying for your purchase.
  10. Not changing the shipping address from your previous order: Imagine an embarrassing drugstore.com item shipping to your Mother in Law by accident, Yikes!

Stupid Coupon Shoppers Confess:

I think we need a place here on FatWallet where we can get these frustrating flub-ups off our chests. You know, like a little support group where we can confess our sophomoric shopping sins to each other and not be judged! Let this blog post be that space.

I’ll go first:

“Hi! My name is Heather, and I have a problem. I have abused the deal hunting rules, squandered my savvy shopping skills, and spent more money than I needed to, even though I knew better.”

Stupid Mistake #1: Not entering the coupon code

    This weekend my husband and I decided it was time to stop spending money fixing our 6 year old fancy-schmancy front load HE washing machine (for the fifth time) and to buy a new basic washing machine instead. I opened up my laptop and went straight to FatWallet, finding a $289 deal on a bare-bones, no bells and whistles, washing machine in the forums.

    The deal wasn’t marked as a cash back offer, but I always try to shop through a cash back link whenever possible, just in case the cash back works. So, I went to the Home Depot page on FatWallet and clicked the “Shop Now” button and searched for the washing machine on Home Depot’s site. I made the purchase, forgetting to try the coupon code that was listed in the forum post, and ended up paying $324 for the washer instead of $289 (a $35 over payment!) Of course we didn’t realize it until after we’d hooked up the washing machine. Home Depot was not able to process the coupon after the fact.

Stupid Mistake #2: Altering the original order

    On Tuesday I decided to order some shoes from 6PM. Not sure of which size would fit best, I ordered two sizes, planning to send one back. But, I didn’t have my head screwed on straight and I ordered both pair in one order. That means when I send one back it will alter the original order and the cash back I earned will be void. I could have avoided this by ordering each size in a separate order.

Wow, I really do feel better, having shared that with you all.

Now it’s your turn. Go ahead…spill your brainless bargain hunting blunders in the comments below! If you need a little Cash Back Shopping refresher, here’s a link to the FatWallet FAQ.

We’ll all feel better knowing we’re not alone so we can push these shopping slip-ups behind us.

:) Heather

Additional Shopping Resources

  • The Demise of Double Coupons
  • Your Guide to Making the Most out of your Store Saver Cards
  • Reasons to Avoid Coupon Fraud
  • Are Warehouse Memberships Worth It?
  • In-Store Warranties vs Alternatives

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