Find Holiday Deals, Not Duds

December 10, 2013
With the holiday season here, shoppers rush to find the best deals in a frenzy of bargains and sales. Many businesses advertise enticing seasonal offers to increase purchases before Christmas, as well as post-holiday shopping. While most ads provide clear information on offer details, Better Business Bureau (BBB) advises consumers to avoid misunderstandings by examining ads closely before checking out, whether shopping at brick-and-mortar stores or online.

BBB offers the following four tips to help consumers make the most of holiday sale ads and avoid misunderstandings or buyer’s remorse:

1. Examine ads carefully. Read the fine print to determine the details. 

2. Investigate lowest-price claims. Prices for products can fluctuate, making it difficult for businesses to claim their prices are lower than a competitor’s. Consumers should comparison shop to find the best deal or lowest price while also considering warranty and return policies.

3. Determine if the item is only available for the advertised price for a limited time. Some sale items are only available for an advertised price on a certain day, or even specific or staggered hours on a designated day.

4. Understand the specifics of “price match” guarantees. Some businesses may offer a refund on the difference in price if a shopper finds the exact item elsewhere for a lower price. Ask questions or read the small print to determine the following: Is the refund cash or store credit? Are there exclusions? What documentation is needed? Is there a timespan or deadline for the price match offer?

About BBB of Central, Northern & Western Arizona 
BBB is an unbiased organization that sets and upholds high standards for fair and honest business behavior. Businesses that earn BBB accreditation contractually agree and adhere to the organization’s high standards of ethical business behavior. Incorporated locally in 1938, today your BBB serves communities in central, northern and western Arizona, supported by over 10,000 BBB Accredited Businesses. BBB provides objective advice, free BBB Business Reviews® and charity BBB Wise Giving ReportsTM, and educational information on topics affecting marketplace trust.