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Daily Deal Do’s and Don’ts

Coupon conscious shoppers are bombarded with opportunities to take advantage of “Daily Deals” and promotional offers from all angles. The most well-known coupon provider at the moment is Groupon, but deals can also be found from Yipit, MyNines, EcoBuys, LivingSocial, and dozens of others. While it is tempting to take advantage of every offer that comes through the pipe, millions of “Daily Deal” coupons are never redeemed. These unredeemed coupons are a budgetary black eye, and completely unnecessary. Here are a few tips to help you get the most from daily coupon offers without going broke in the process:

Do Grab Coupons For Businesses You Already Frequent

The sticking point for many special offers is that they are from a business you don’t usually visit. To use the coupon, you have to make a special trip. With gas at $4 per gallon in many parts of the country, it’s hard to justify a trip to somewhere out of the way or unfamiliar just to use a coupon. As a result, you put the coupon on the shelf, promising that you will use it “later” but that day never comes.

Save money and heartache by focusing your coupon buying on businesses that you already frequent. Since you know the business and go there already, it is much more convenient for you to use the coupon that you’ve bought.

Don’t Forget The Fine Print

Another sticking point for some of these great deals is the fine print. You may have 50% off a clothing purchase, but only if you buy more than $75, or you might have $10 off your meal but only if you order three full-price entrees. This fine print can suck the savings right out of the offer or make it so inconvenient to use your coupons that you just let the deal expire. Remember, it pays to read all of the fine print before you buy the coupon so that you are sure that you can use it.

Do Think Of What You Need Over What You Want

Coupon offers and daily deals cater to your wants and impulsive buying tendencies. They’re often unrelated to the things that you actually need or even goods and services that you buy normally. As a result, you have a great deal on a total non-essential, leading to overspending on frivolous items.

It’s better to think of what you really need when loading up on daily deal coupons. Discount haircuts, price cuts on home goods, gift shop coupons for places you get gifts, or clothing deals from your favorite stores are good options. Skydiving lessons, spa services, and even discount plastic surgery are all nice-to-haves that represent budgetary no-no’s if you are really trying to save.

Don’t Forget To Resell Unused Coupons

If you just couldn’t help it and loaded up on daily deals you now realize you won’t use, think about reselling them. As the number of deal sites and programs has grown, so has the pool of unused deals that go to waste. Seeing a business opportunity, there are now several places you can get some money for your unused coupons.

Examples of these coupon reselling sites include DealsGoRound, Skeedka, and CoupRecoup. They work not unlike an eBay for deals, offering you a place to post up the coupon or deal that you bought in a place bargain hunters are checking. If they see a deal that looks good, they’ll buy it from you. The sites charge a brokering fee (around 10%, check the fine print) and make no promises that you’ll sell your coupons. Still, for those who bought in haste and are regretting in leisure, it’s a good way out. You might also find that these kinds of resellers are another great place to pick up a deal – but as ever, don’t over do it!

There are dozens, if not hundreds, of daily deal type sites out there looking for your business. You can use them to your advantage as a budget-conscious shopper if you are smart and careful. Focus on businesses that you already know and trust, don’t overlook the fine print, and try to buy things that you actually need. In the end you may need to resell a few coupons, but you should fine at least a few new ways to save money and get more room in your personal budget.

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