Millions of people are crunching the numbers more often when th ey are buying something. “Can I get this? Is it a deal or just a hook? 25% OFF! This must be a deal!”
Never underestimate a company's ability to deceive with well placed percentages. Here is an example: Which is better, getting $5 towards your $25 purchase, or 20% off your $25 purchase? If you answered that $5 dollars was the best deal, then you're like most of us who think in dollar signs. But for the rest of shoppers who responded, “Hey, they’re the same.” Then congratulations you're one step closer to smart shopping excellence. Now let's sharpen those shopping skills!
Spotting the Fraud
Companies love to play with percentages when they are trying to get you to spend more than usual all at once. A good example of this would be 10% off your purchase of $20 or more. Sounds nice, but if you translate to dollars it equals $2 off spending $20 OR MORE. Not only does this not look so great anymore but you will probably leave having spent more than the $20.
High Roller Tricks
The next well played hand by most businesses is the disappearing percentage trick. As we discussed above they lure you in with percents to get you to spend over a low amount. But they can do the same to get you spending in the triple digits by making the percentages disappear. For example they’ll offer $15 off your purchase of a $150. Yet this is still just 10% off. Would you have been tempted had they offered 10% off a $150 purchase? Not likely. That is because we like to think cash in hand first.
So what did we discover? Simple, if they want you to spend more on small purchases they will throw a good sounding percent. But if they want you to really dole out some cash (like on Black Friday) they will throw out the percentage in favor of the sound of cold hard cash back.
Be on guard, shop smart, save creatively!