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I recently received a coupon post card in the mail from a major retailer. Every coupon on the card was something I regularly buy from them. The catch, in very fine print, was that they wanted me to drive by not one, but two of their local stores to buy from their new store in the next town.

What are they thinking? That it would be a good idea to get me to visit their new store--that is just like the others?

I wondered how many customers filled their carts at the local store, only to hear "that coupon isn't good at this store."

Most probably didn't unload their carts but made the purchase. But how many will be back?
I thought of the many young, financially struggling mothers in my town that were conned by this game.

It left a sour taste in my mouth, and I have been shopping at their major competitor since then.

I think it was Sears Roebuck that once-upon-a -time demonstrated that you could make a profit by providing good quality at a fair price, honoring all offers, and guaranteeing satisfaction for life.

Retailing is an animal that seems to be dominated by lawyer-vetted fine print. I am a suspicious customer anytime I am dealing with a large business.

I would rather pay more and have fewer surprises. And this is the way I run my business. The only surprises my customers get is that there isn't a catch and there isn't any fine print.

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