Couponing 101

Spotting A Fake

So if you follow me on Facebook you know that we found some FAKE coupons floating around… (A WHILE BACK) Now how many of you would know that its FAKE? Do you know what to look for to spot weather or not a coupon that you found on the internet is real?

Well today I scanned in the images and I will show you a real coupon found on Coupon Network, and a FAKE one found on www.ppgazette.com  ( please refrain from using this site as the legitimacy of all coupons comes into question when a fake one is found!)

Spotting a FAKE

Lets start with looking at the real coupon … below is a scanned image of a real coupon from Coupon Network…

1. I have my computer set to print in gray scale to save on ink.
2. Even when printed in gray scale we see the watermark behind the expiration date.
(Also the number above the second bar-code should be different even if it is the same coupon printed a second time!)

Now lets look at the FAKE Coupons…

These are the first ones that I printed

1. As I said I have my printer set to gray scale and these printed in color thus over-riding my settings (smells a little fishy)
2. There is no water mark behind the expiration date…
3.  The number that should be unique on each coupon printed … even if a duplicate of the first one! (remember this for the next image)
4. Notice the text is slightly larger here… (This just seemed odd to me)
5.  There are three different coupons for the same product each DIFFERENT but for the same sized package.

Now lets look at the next ones that I printed from the same site…

3. As I mentioned above each number should be different and the ones here are the same as the ones on the ones I previously mentioned.
There are several other things that stood out to me on these coupons…
  •  I was able to print the coupon 4 times from the same computer (this was done by mistake)
  • The site claims all the coupons on that page are from Coupon Network… yet I couldn’t find this on their site.
  • I was prompted to install a coupon printer by the site that I know I already had.

So how do you proceed?

well I alerted the CIC (The Coupon Information Corporation) that I believed this coupon to be fake, I e-mailed them the site and info on the coupon.

Then I called the manufacture to ask them about it and well they told me that  they occasionally e-mail or mail out coupons to those on their mailing list, but that never are they posted on any of the typical online coupon sites that offer printable coupons!

So the lesson in all of this is follow your gut if it seems to good to be true or has a foul odor then it probably isn’t an ethical coupon!
Also there is another site that I suspect may also be FAKE because of how the coupons print and some of the coupons that are posted on there being from the same manufacture as these that were in question so please avoid www.commonkindness.com  I am waiting to here from the CIC regarding the site.

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