Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Is Kohl's training me to wait for discounts?

About once a month we get a marketing piece from Kohl's in the [snail] mail with a peelie on it that says you can either get an additional 15, 20, or 30% off your purchases.

Every single time until today I've always gotten 15%. Then I throw it in the garbage thinking -- why would I go get 15% off if there are 30% coupons out there. Today I finally got a 30% off and thought -- "ok, maybe I'll use this."

So my question to my wife (and now to you all) is whether the Kohl's promotion is good or bad for business. They've been using this same promotion for at least a few years. Are they just conditioning me to never buy anything unless I have a 30% (or even 15% off) coupon?

Same thing happened to Linens N Things. They totally conditioned me to never shop without a coupon. Because the coupons were everywhere! (And now look where they are!)


Light said...

Bed Bath and Beyond continually have 20% off one item coupons sent to you in the mail. AC Moore and Micheal's have constant 50% off coupons off one item as well in their circular. Do these sale tactics work? I think so. Are these companies still in business? Yes.

I am a shopper of need more-so than a saver. I wish I saved a bit more, but that takes alot of planning ahead of time...which I can do sometimes.

So in answer to the question, I don't always wait for the 30% off coupon from Kohls and use the 15% off coupon depending on a need for something (which honestly comes infrequently). Also, my guess is that when people do buy things from Kohls, and have a 30% off coupon, they probably tend to buy more because they feel they are saving and therefore can afford more.

Kohls might condition some, but the upside of Kohls is that even without that snail mail coupon, I continually am surprised by the deals that I find every time I walk into the store.

Shaun Mahal said...

Higher volume businesses' profitability can be made or broken by pricing. Retailers like Bed Bath and Beyond and Kohl's (and others) might inflate their list prices so that they can offer the 20-30% discount without hurting their profitability. Or they might have some sort of agreement with their vendors in which they share the discount so that their bottom line isn't taking the brunt of the impact.

It would be interesting to see how many shoppers at a Bed Bath and Beyond don't use a coupon.