We all know that many credit cards come with reward programs that allow you to earn points, cash back or air miles with your spending.
The famous deals site Groupon.com just hopped on board with an innovative program called Groupon Rewards. When you’re a Groupon user, you can have several credit cards on file so that when you’re ready to purchase a deal, your information is already there (how convenient!).
Groupon is soliciting local businesses to sign up and post a virtual sticker that says “We Reward Our Best Customers.” Then when you use a credit or debit card that’s registered on your Groupon account, it will keep track of it. Once you’ve spent a minimum amount, you unlock exclusive rewards at the business.
When I hit my Groupon Rewards landing page for the first time, it showed me the last four digits of all of the credit cards I have on file (many of which are expired or canceled due to fraud). Next to them it says, “Make sure to use these cards whenever you shop, or add more cards so you never miss out on rewards!”
The minimums are quite high. At one Austin, Texas, restaurant, Hyde Park Bar and Grill, you have to spend $100. But once unlocked, the deal is $15 off — not too bad. Though for one spa, you have to spend $300 before you get just $35 off. And at a framing store, you have to spend $1,050 before you get your $175 discount.
Some of these seem unrealistic, but at the same time, it’s nice that it’s encouraging repeat visits to individual businesses. I’ve talked to several Austin business owners who have done a Groupon offer or another similar deal site and received loads of business from it, but many of the Groupon customers were in it only for a deal and never returned. Groupon Rewards encourages people to continue going back. Initially, I wondered how Groupon benefited from this. But then I realized that they win by having many of your credit cards on file. It makes it so easy to log in and click “buy now” without having to re-enter your credit card information.
I thought this concept was really interesting and something I hadn’t seen yet. Do you think you will use Groupon rewards?
Keep on reading for my list of my top 10 favorite personal finance blog posts from the past week.
1. Fiscally Sound provides some suggestions for teaching your kids how to be financially responsible.
2. Buck$ome Boomer discusses the financial lessons she hopes to pass on to her 7-year-old son as he grows up.
3. Frugal Dad lists several ways to save money on entertainment expenses, several of which are completely free.
4. On a similar note, My Dollar Plan shares six tips for frugal foodies who need alternatives to expensive dining at restaurants.
5. Newlyweds on a Budget discusses how it’s not the price of a gift that makes it matter, but the thought that goes into it.
6. Wondering why you’re never getting a raise at work? Money Crashers provides an excellent guide on how to score a raise or promotion at your job.
7. One Money Design reveals 10 ways you can save money on gas this summer, one of which is using gas credit cards.
8. Money Spruce writes a great post about why you shouldn’t wait until you’re retired to start traveling.
9. Simple Finance Blog explains what you should do if debt collectors come to you seeking payment.
10. Mother’s Day is this weekend! If you still haven’t gotten around to buying a present, Frugal Confessions suggests several affordable gift ideas.