Some voucher users branded thieves by industry body



  • moggylover
    moggylover Forumite Posts: 13,324 Forumite
    taxiphil wrote: »
    No, the situation isn't as simple as that. The whole reason that vouchers are printed by manufacturers is as an incentive designed to increase sales on new products, and encourage brand migration from customers of rival brands. They're not printed simply as "free money" in a fit of generosity by the manufacturer. If Tesco presents a million 10p off coupons to Heinz, when Tesco have let customers use them against any item in the store, Heinz will be £100k down and won't have seen any increase in sales. But if Tesco had only allowed people to use the coupon against the specified product, there would be an increase in sales, both an immediate one and a longer-term one caused by consumers discovering the new product and becoming loyal to it.

    As chardir and Martin Lewis have correctly said, the actual fraud is being committed by Tesco against the manufacturer. When the customer enters into a contract at the till, they could hand over absolutely anything as payment - a blank piece of paper or a rusty old pram - and if Tesco choose to accept it, no wrongdoing has occurred on the customer's part.

    The wrongdoing happens when Tesco presents the coupons to the manufacturers for reimbursement with the express or implied assurance that the customer bought the product.

    It's not good enough for Tesco to say, "ah but we sold plenty of these products to other people who didn't use vouchers, so that cancels it out", because obviously these other people were going to buy the product anyway, so they were not part of the target audience of the voucher and hence there was no increase in sales generated by the voucher.

    I really DO appreciate that this is the aim of the vouchers - but I think that any manufacturer who thinks that it will truly work in the majority of cases is rather deluded by the hype of the marketing team:D. Almost everyone I know shops mostly by price and will "tart" from product to product for most of the stuff they buy depending upon what is on special offer.

    At the end of the day the vouchers are for a one off money saving amount and the vast majority of those issued will be binned! Furthermore, I think it would be almost impossible to prove that the big supermarkets had not actually taken the vouchers in return for the correct product most of the time because they will almost certainly have shifted more product than they have accepted vouchers, so proving any wrong doing is not going to be easy.

    I can see that it is perhaps ethically "wrong" for the supermarkets to do this, but have to admit to having little sympathy for the manufacturers. If they really want us to buy their product then they need to make it live up to their claims for it (anyone wish that shifting stains from washing was really as easy as it is for a persil mum?:rolleyes:) and irresistible on price. If the product is not selling it is either not much cop, or too expensive - simple business sense really not all this marketing clap-trap that gets talked these days:D.

    A better way to tempt us into trying their product would be to send out a free sample anyway - then if it is any good/better than the competition and competitively priced people will buy it:D
    "there are some persons in this World who, unable to give better proof of being wise, take a strange delight in showing what they think they have sagaciously read in mankind by uncharitable suspicions of them"
    (Herman Melville)
  • ben500
    ben500 Posts: 23,192 Forumite
    The only criminal activity is on the part of the supermarket that fraudulently redeems coupons which have clearly not been submitted in exchange for the designated product, if you offer a bag of toenail clippings and a squashed frog in exchange for a product and the supermarket accepts it in payment then the deed is done, same with a coupon, if they then go on to present it to the manufacturer declaring it as being exchanged for the designated product when it hasn't that is not your responsibility.
    Four guns yet only one trigger prepare for a volley.

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  • um5000
    um5000 Forumite Posts: 32 Forumite
    absolute rubbish!

    contract law applies - you enter into a contract at the till, and in the same way retailers are not obliged to charge the advertised price (e.g. a shelf incorrectly marked) they are not obliged to accept the vouchers. If they do it's not the customers fault, there was a bargain concluded at the point of sale. It's like saying you are shoplifting by putting items into your basket, until you 'fess up at the till and repay it!

    the real issue as a few have said is the retailers passing fraudulent claims on to suppliers (in violation of their contracts). they shouldn't get away with it, but I fear they will pass that on to the customers if they can't keep doing it. typical bullying tactics from the supermarkets as we've seen with the farming industry, but now the manufacturers are biting back - good for them but it's misdirected at the end consumer!
  • bulgariafairy
    bulgariafairy Forumite Posts: 327 Forumite
    I say good on you Martin for using the Lewis Hamilton example...and sod the rest!! when they change the policy, then we'll stop doing it! :beer:
    Won't buy nuffink without a discount :p
  • simreb
    simreb Forumite Posts: 18 Forumite
    Get real Annie Swift, shops have done this since the start of time as a service to customers. Don't start shouting your mouth out against customers. If you don't want to give away vouchers then don't. If you want shops to only accept coupons for the specific products then take it up with them but please don't call us shoplifters. If I was a shop and you insisted that each voucher was checked against a product then I would tell you where to go. It slows down service and causes hassle to the customer. If I was the ISP I would be looking to replace this lady, she gives her organisation a bad name. In this climate it is survival and everyone has to make a buck where they can and I have no qualms at all in taking it from your members to feed my starving children.

    After this outburst by this lady I shall now do all I can to obtain as many vouchers as possible and trade them in at my local shop in bulk. I suggest everyone does the same to teach her a lesson. Remember use as many vouchers as you can for the same product, not just one. If they are online vouchers then try and run off more by using different email adresses or maybe another computer. Sometimes you have to delete you cookies if they have left one on your computer after the first voucher

    Come on people lets teach this lady a lesson and make her sorry she had a go at us.

    Come the revolution brothers and sisters
  • simreb
    simreb Forumite Posts: 18 Forumite
    edited 9 December 2009 at 6:39PM
    If you supermarket wil not oblige with cashing in your coupons then go to your friendly corner shop, they will always oblige to get your business
  • jamespir
    jamespir Forumite Posts: 21,456 Forumite

    the supermarkets were the ones who started this not us if anyones a criminal its threm
    Replies to posts are always welcome, If I have made a mistake in the post, I am human, tell me nicely and it will be corrected. If your reply cannot be nice, has an underlying issue, or you believe that you are God, please post in another forum. Thank you
  • Jadek
    Jadek Forumite Posts: 102
    Part of the Furniture 10 Posts Combo Breaker
    I have never worked in a Supermarket nor have I ever paid particular attention to the till systems but I did used to work in Boots and in Boots you certainly cannot use a voucher for one product on a different product, it simply will not allow you to (and it was a real pain in the bum to override to say the least). Thus I can only conclude from this that there is technology available to ensure that distributed vouchers are only used against the intended products. I assume that most manufacturers have not attempted to implement this technology so far, either in liasion with the retailer or on their own vouchers, as before now there has been no reason to. So I can only wonder why the manufacturers are now blaming the consumer when there is clearly a breakdown of communication, trust, understanding or all of the above between the manufacturer and the retailer. As many have already said, it is the retailer at fault for violating their contract.

    Personally I think that, due to the recession and the increased popularity of the internet since the last recession, manufacturers are realising that people are becoming wiser when shopping and are actively looking for discounts and vouchers more so than they used to be, which of course is a very scary concept especially as they realise this mentality is here to stay and will not diminish in most once the recession has ended. Thus they are trying to scaremonger consumers into leaving the vouchers alone in an attempt to stop them having to turn to the real culprits - the retailers. Let's face it, scaremongering a few customers into paying full price would be a lot easier than entering into an almighty row, which may or may not turn into a legal battle, with the retailer and risk loosing high profile distributors.
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