Thursday, March 31, 2011

Knowing Your Store Manager

Today, I learned the importance of one of the strategies I see all the time on couponing blogs....Get to know your store manager. My local Rite-Aid is the only place I shop every week at the same time. I've been a regular for the past couple months and the cashiers and manager have started to recognize me.

Today, I finally made it in to pick up the deal on the Finish tablets I told you about earlier this week. For the past several weeks, there have been 3 boxes of Finish tablets on the clearance shelf at my Rite-Aid. They did not have a price on them and I just hadn't taken the time to ask. But I figured today was a good opportunity to find out if they were indeed on clearance since there was a $5 +UP reward when you spent $15 on Finish products.

I took them up the front and asked the cashier to scan them. They rang up at full price ($6.49), so I figured they were just misplaced. But the manager was standing there and said "Weren't those on the clearance shelf? They are 75% off". Score!!!

I bought the 3 clearanced boxes and 4 additional boxes (on sale for 50%). My total was over $15, but my +UP Reward didn't print. The manager was still standing there chatting with me about couponing so I asked why my +UP didn't print. He said it was because the clearance items had to be price adjusted, so they weren't factored into $15 (I have another theory about this that I'll share in a minute). But he said, "I'll take care of it". He said I could find something else to buy and he would price adjust it. I grab 2 more boxes of Finish and he ended up price adjusting them both down to $0 (a $6.29 value). I did offer the pay the difference, but he said it was okay.

(9) boxes of Finish tablets (reg. price $6.29-$6.49)
- $3/$15 survey coupon
- $3.75 in coupons
= $10.67
81% savings

I know it looks like this is less of a savings than my intended scenario, but remember in that scenario I would have ended up with a $5 +UP reward. If I had rolled that reward into 2 more boxes of Finish, my total costs would have been $11.96. Math isn't my strong point, but trust me on this one.

My theory on +UP Rewards: Both times I have had problems with my +UP rewards printing, it has been when my total (after coupons) has been below the amount needed to trigger the +UP. Today, my total after coupons was $10.76. Even though I spent $15 on Finish products and have had clearance items count towards deals like this in the past, the manager stated this was why my reward didn't print. I have never had this problem when buying other items that bring my total over the required amount. My theory is that if I had spent an additional $4.25 on anything, my total would have been over $15 and my reward would have printed. This is just a theory, I'll do some testing and report back.

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