A Guide to User Generated Coupons

[ 0 ] September 19, 2011 |

If you’re frugally minded, you might have noticed more and more coupon sites have started to accept user generated coupons. What’s the deal with them, you ask? Are they good or bad? How are they different from other coupon sites?

Don’t fret, fabulous savers, we’ve got answers for all your questions.

What are user generated coupons?

Consider it the new frontier in social couponing. They’re deals found by anyone on the internet and then uploaded to a website or shared on a forum. They include online coupon codes, printable coupons and scanned cutouts from magazines and flyers.

Yep, that’s right: your fellow online bargain hunters are actively working to share the best deals with you. Imagine that – strangers on the internet helping each other.

How does it differ from affiliate couponing?

Many coupon sites don’t actually offer user generated coupons. For instance, our site FabulousSavings operates through affiliate couponing. We negotiate deals through an affiliate network and upload coupons approved by merchant sites. So instead of featuring random coupons found by users, we feature deals that come directly from retailers.

For a more in-depth look at affiliate couponing, just check out our blog post on the subject.

Pros

  1. You might come across hidden or single-time deals you wouldn’t find on other coupon sites.
  2. This method of couponing allows you to read or give feedback on specific coupons.
  3. Some websites display stats on success rates for individual coupons, making it easier for users to determine which ones to use.
  4. A sense of community is encouraged between you and your fellow couponers.

Cons

  1. Because the content is user generated, the information might be incorrect. The coupon code may be right, but the expiry date might be wrong, or vice versa.
  2. Some sites require you sign up to use their coupons, or even pay a fee.
  3. Certain deals made public on user generated coupon sites may not be meant for mass use, and thus retailers may be overwhelmed by the demand.
  4. Conversely, some coupons might be single-use-only, which the person uploading may not even notice.

As you can see, user generated coupons are an exciting new way to share online deals. It has its plusses and minuses, but bargain hunters around the net would be missing out if they didn’t give it a shot.

What do you think about user generated coupons – do you prefer them over affiliate coupons? Leave us a comment!

This is the fifth post in an 8-part blog series. Each Monday we will break down the different elements of couponing and show you how you can use them to become a savvy couponer. Related posts in this series:

Category: shopping tips

About Shannon: Shannon is a savvy saver and lover of all things fashion and beauty. As a lover of pop-culture, she'll keep you up-to-date on all the hottest news and trends. You can find her tweeting on @FabulousSavings. View author profile.

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