This post should be called “How I Got Paid 80 Cents to Take a Free $20 Restaurant Gift Certificate.” Let me explain.
I am new to Groupon. Until last week I had never purchased one of their ‘deal of the day’ offers. But I did follow them on Facebook and recently one of their offers interested me enough that I actually took the step of creating an account. I didn’t purchase that particular offer, but not too long after a Groupon email showed up in my email inbox for $10 off a Groupon deal if I purchased it in the next two weeks.
Tip #1: Sign up for a free Groupon account, even if you’re not planning on purchasing anything at the moment. I don’t know for sure, but I assume the simple act of signing up for the account is what triggered the $10 off offer.
As luck would have it, the same day I got the Groupon email, they were offering $10 for $20 worth of food at Granite City, a chain restaurant near our house that we eat at regularly. By using my Groupon offer code, I would be able to get it for free. A $20 gift certificate for free is almost always a no-brainer, but this was my favorite kind of deal: a way to save money on something I would be doing anyway. In this case, eating at Granite City.
Tip #2: Pay special attention to Groupon for deals at businesses or for services that you already use. This will help reduce your budget instead of busting it.
The $10 offer was a one-time deal, but there is a way you can save an additional 8% on every Groupon purchase you make: use Mr. Rebates to make your purchase. I’ve written about Mr. Rebates a lot on this blog, but basically it’s a site that allows you to earn cash back on your internet shopping at thousands of retailers, including Groupon.
Here’s what you do:
- Create your free Mr. Rebates account (takes about 30 seconds).
- Click through to Groupon from Mr. Rebates.
- Make your purchase as usual.
And just for clicking through to Groupon from Mr. Rebates, you’re paid an 8% rebate on your Groupon purchase. (There are other cash back sites that also give rebates for Groupon, but Mr. Rebates offers 8%, which is the highest percentage I’ve seen.)
Tip #3: Always go through Mr. Rebates to make your Groupon purchases and you’ll save an additional 8%.
And here’s where my story gets a little ridiculous. I went through Mr. Rebates when I made my Granite City Groupon purchase, even though I assumed there wouldn’t be any cash back since I wasn’t paying anything. But Mr. Rebates did actually credit me with 80 cents back on the $10 I would have paid without the Groupon special email offer. So Mr. Rebates and Groupon paid me 80 cents cash back on a $20 gift certificate I didn’t pay anything for. That works for me.
Do you Groupon? What kind of deals have you been able to score?