On July 15, Target accidentally allowed multiple discount offers to stack together, offering customers the chance to get $50 worth of stuff for less than $30. Then, on Sunday, July 29, Amazon listed the white Echo Spot for $0.00. And just a few days later on July 31, Amazon posted a Panasonic camera for $37.50 (the typical list price is $399.99). We call these "price mistakes" in the Slickdeals community, and they are some of the best values you can take advantage of.
This isn't the first time that Amazon and other stores have messed up, and it definitely won't be the last. In fact, we typically see 10 to 15 good price mistakes every year. While companies sometimes rectify these errors immediately (the Echo Spot never shipped, for instance), an employee in our office actually did receive the Panasonic camera, netting them over $360 in value. So, they're always worth checking out.
You can usually find these accidental discounts on the Slickdeals forums first. But the big question is: will you find out about it before the retailer cancels the deal or it goes out of stock?
If these types of money-saving opportunities get your blood pumping, we've got some tips and tricks to help you stay connected with Slickdeals and increase the chances of receiving an actual product. These tried-and-true strategies will ensure you know about discounts or pricing errors before the masses. Plus, we'll show you how to take advantage of a price mistake even if they cancel the shipment!
Don't believe price mistakes happen that often? Check out the 10 Best Price Mistakes and Shopping Glitches of 2017.
Author's Note: Apologies if this article set off your Deal Alerts! But there are times when we just have to use the term "price mistake," like when we're talking about price mistakes.
Set Yourself Up for Success
Create a Deal Alert
Capitalizing on a price mistake — or any deal, for that matter — requires two things: 1) You know about the deal and 2) you get there fast.
Luckily, Slickdeals lets you accomplish both with a free service called Deal Alerts. When someone posts a deal that matches a keyword of your choice (for example, "price mistake"), the Slickdeals app immediately sends you an email or mobile push notification. Set keywords for your favorite products, stores, categories, or occasions, and never miss out on another great deal.
Want to learn more about creating Deal Alerts? Check out our instructional article here.
Use the Fastest Possible Shipping
People make mistakes, and people need to catch them. So, to improve your chances of receiving a product, make sure it stays under the radar by choosing or paying for expedited shipping.
Amazon largely automates its one-day shipping method, so by the time someone recognizes a price mistake, hopefully your product is already on the truck and headed to you. It's a lot harder to cancel an order that has already shipped, and if same-day in-store pick up is available, that's even better.
While expedited shipping may seem expensive, it can help you get an expensive item for next-to-nothing. Remember, if they cancel your item, they cancel the shipping charge, which means you have nothing to lose but a few minutes of effort.
Look Beyond the Actual Price Mistake
Even if you know a company will cancel your price mistake, you should place the order anyway. Amazon and other stores will sometimes offer $5 gift cards as an apology for the inconvenience.
And here's another ingenious hack that you'd only learn about by reading the comments from the Slickdeals community. With the recent Echo Spot mistake, Slickdealer cjhasting created a significant discount on an in-stock black Echo Spot by using Amazon's standard "buy two Echo Spots and get $40 off" bundle offer. See, they knew there was a high chance Amazon would cancel the zero dollar white Echo Spot. So by adding the "free" Spots to their cart, cjhasting essentially applied a $40 off coupon for an Echo Spot that would most likely ship.
There's often a wealth of valuable information like this hiding in the comments section. Indeed, some of the best "price mistakes" are the ones you create for yourself, or find out from other Slickdealers. When Target offered those multiple discount offers, for instance, our forum users immediately recognized the opportunity for big savings.
Make Slickdeals Part of Your Daily Routine
Some of the best deals, including price mistakes, can appear and disappear in a matter of minutes, so make checking in with the Slickdeals community a regular habit.
Have you set up a Deal Alert yet? What's the best price mistake that actually worked for you? Let us know in the comments below!
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