5 Tips To Show You How To Know If Something Is Really In The Sale

| February 24, 2013 | Reply

On the face of it, this probably a really strange article or article title. However, in these times of austerity, supermarkets and large chains are trying every trick in the book to get you to part with more and more of your hard earned cash.

I’ll be careful here and say that they’re not out to defraud you of your money, but what I would say is, they use very clever tactics to confuse and manipulate you by how they describe an item, what price they charge and what timeline they use when describing the full price figure.

1. The Do Your Home Work Approach

“Oh no, not homework!” I hear you shout. Look relax, I’m not telling you to research a market place to write a thesis. This is a lot easier and a lot less stressful. However, to really get down to the bare knuckles of what’s going on, you’ll have to do a little research I’m afraid.

2. The Lehman’s Approach

If you’re shopping in a retail outlet, one of the best things to do is simply ask the sales assistant about the offer and the history behind it. This is a lot easier to do in a small locally owned store or outlet rather than a larger chain. However, some of the larger chains are now displaying the dates when items were last on sale and for what price. Take a look below at the “Compare The Years Approach” section. Unless you’ve kept a record of all of the price drops and increase, this is really hard to do. Much easier if this is done online.

3. The Competition Approach

This is one of the easiest things to do to find out if something is really on sale. Check the competition. By competition I mean, other similar or related stores that sell the same product you’re looking to purchase. What you want to find is, has the item that’s reduced actually reduced by the same amount as another rival store. Is it the same item and has been made of the same material. Obviously, it’s a lot easier to do with electrical items since they normally have a item code or model number. It’s a little bit harder than clothing where two garments may look the same, when in fact the material they’re made out of is different.

You can also play this by averages. If you compare the price of the item with 5 competitors, work out what the average price is. You can do this by adding all the prices together and then dividing it by the amount of stores you’re comparing.

For example, if I was to compare the price of the iPad Mini for example which at the time of writing is £269, then I could either compare stores or even websites with the price:

Store 1 Price £269 (on sale)

Store 2 Price £289

Store 3 Price £319

Store 4 Price £279

Store 5 Price £299

So in this example I would add all of the prices together £269+£289+£319+£279+£299 = £1455

I would then divide the £1455 by the amount of stores which is 5;

£1455 ÷ 5 = £291

So if the sale price is £269 and the average sale price is £291, we know that the REAL saving is £22.

I apologise for the Maths lesson, but this shows how to find out the price of a sale item when comparing it to the competition.

I would add that this is a lot easier to do online rather than traipsing around the stores.

4. Compare The Years Approach

Comparing the years is probably a more in-depth approach to this. In essence, you’re basically comparing time dates (when the product first hot the shelves and what price to the price labeled up today). This will show you whether there has been a REAL price reduction or if the store is just playing around with the figures. Supermarkets are notorious for doing this (where they know customers won’t compare the price of item from a year ago).

Again, this is so much easier to do online since websites are transparent and if posts and pages haven’t been deleted, then there’sa strong possibility of them still showing up in the search engine index (you can still see a page or post that was written months and years ago).

If it’s electrical, then sites like Hot Deals Monster and Hot UK Deals are perfect. We generally keep old posts and pages up, even when the item has expired or the product has been deleted.

You can also compare model numbers. We list items on this site that are older models of a newer model about to be launched (hence the sudden price drop). This is a great indicator in the size of the discount when comparing both the new and older model prices.

5. The General Review Approach

What are others saying about the product. A good tool to use would either be sites like Facebook or Twitter. We’re talking real time updates from the general public. There’s very little chance of prices being heavily manipulated when masses of people are actually giving an opinion on an item they’ve just purchased or a service they’ve just experienced.

Review sites and forums are the perfect place to look to see what others are saying and will even pass valuable information and advice if they have it.

5 Tips To Show You How To Know If Something Is Really In The Sale PDF Download


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About the Author ()

I set up Hot Deals Monster because I was frustrated with the lack of deals specifically targeted to Men. I wasn't interested in cheap nappies or 10p off my next box of cornflakes. I wanted real, interesting deals that would genuinely help and save money for the male consumer.

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