(Updated 10/18/16) A couple weeks ago I wrote an article titled Forgot your Coupon? These Retailers Still Got your Back where I talked about some strategies to save money even when you enter certain stores without a coupon. So it makes sense this week that I talk about how to save money online at some popular retail websites when you can’t find a coupon code to use.
It revolves around the growing ‘Live Chat’ coupon trend and how many operators are trained to hand out coupon codes to polite shoppers that simply ask. I did the research and found a dozen of the most popular retailers that’ll hand out a coupon code via live chat to shoppers who play their cards right.
Here is what I discovered (in alphabetical order):
American Eagle Outfitters.com
The folks at American Eagle Outfitters just recently started a live chat feature so I though I’d test it out in the hopes of scoring a coupon. Here is what I discovered:
- The operator I spoke with immediately hooked me up with a 40% off coupon code.
- Daliris also told me about coupon exclusions which in my case included AE jeans for some reason.
- Always ask about the exclusions so you don’t waste a bunch of time shopping only to find out what you want to buy is excluded from the coupon.
Bass Pro Shops.com
One popular online store that readily hands out coupons via Live Chat is Bass Pro Shops.com which is a huge shopping destination for hunters, fishermen, and outdoors-men. If you can’t find a coupon the traditional way, be sure to pull up a live chat session and politely hit up Debi (or whoever you get) to see if they have a coupon code up their sleeves. A few tips:
- Always be polite and courteous when asking for a coupon since your words are all you have when trying to score an online discount.
- Debi immediately hooked me up with a coupon code good for free shipping on my entire order. This coupon did exclude boats, but luckily I’m not in the market for a new boat!
- If live chat fails to bring you a coupon at Bass Pro Shops make sure to check out their Facebook page as they have currently have a couple coupons posted on their wall.
Birthday Express & Celebrate Express.com
If you’re in the planning mode for your child’s next birthday party or any other big shindig, be sure to hit up a live chat operator for a coupon at Celebrate Express.com or Birthday Express.com. Here is the skinny:
- Both websites use the same coupon codes so you can start the Live Chat feature from either site and the codes will work on both.
- Leslie hooked me up immediately with a coupon code good for 15% off your $75+ regular-priced merchandise total. Not a great coupon but certainly handy for larger purchases.
For those who love to shop for bargains at DressBarn.com you’re going to want to get well acquainted with their Live Char feature. Here are a few tips:
- I got the impression that my operator, Laurel, had a big list of coupon codes at her disposal. I say this because she said “Try PRES14” as if she had other codes up her sleeve if for some reason it didn’t work.
- So if you’re buying more than 1 item, or any sale items, ask the Dress Barn operator for a coupon that better fits your online order. I think you’ll be happily surprised with the results.
For those of you not familiar with Eastbay.com, they sell athletic footwear, apparel, and training equipment. They are known for their amazing selection but tend to also be on the expensive side so you’ll always want to shop with an Eastbay coupon code. Here is how I scored one from live chat:
- I was having trouble viewing their website and asked my operator, Dan, if they had any current coupons. He told me they did and it was viewable during Step 4 of the checkout process.
- I told him I couldn’t see it on the website and he was able to tell me the coupon code needed to collect 20% off.
- This is a good strategy for any website you’re having trouble using as many retailers will give you a coupon for your inconvenience.
I can only assume that the Foot Locker Live Chat operators are sitting at their desk wearing a striped ref shirt with a whistle around their neck.
- My Foot Locker live chat buddy, Aaron, hooked me up with a free shipping on $75 or more coupon code. Not great, but if you shop regularly at Foot Locker you already know that most of their shoes are priced above $75.
- I tried to get something better out of Aaron, like 20% off, but he did not have another coupon for me. He said that later in the month he’d have a 20% off coupon, but nothing right now.
- I asked him if better Footlocker coupons typically come out later in the month and he confirmed this to be true.
Next, I hit up Jen via Live Chat at The Home Depot.com and asked her for a coupon code. She was unable to provide one but she did offer a pretty cool service that is worth sharing.
- I told her I was doing a kitchen remodel and looking for a coupon for a new dishwasher. The washer was already on sale for close to 25% off and no additional savings were available but she was incredibly familiar with the washer and was able to answer all my questions. Very handy if you are doing a big remodel and have a bunch of questions.
- Jen was by far the most helpful live chat operator I have ever talked to in terms of product knowledge, well done Home Depot.
I was really impressed with the Live Chat operator at J.Jill.com, who ironically was also named Jill. I wonder if they only hire gals named Jill? But anyways, she really went beyond the call of duty.
- First, Jill hooked me up with a free shipping coupon and then she dropped the 411 on where to find the best deals. She told me J.Jill was offering their entire ‘Sale and Outlet’ section for an additional 30% off for a limited time. No code needed.
- I love when live chat operators tell me where they most savings can be found on that particular day.
- Also be sure to follow J.Jill on Twitter as they are known for dropping exclusive coupons on their feed on a weekly basis.
L.L.Bean is known for their quality clothing and outstanding customer service that includes a 100% satisfaction guarantee. These days they always offer free shipping on your purchase but rarely have other coupons. Your chances increase greatly if you use their Live Chat feature as they want you to finalize your purchase today. Here’s the best strategy:
- Be polite, maybe even compliment them on how happy you have been with prior L.L.Bean purchases. In other words, butter them up a little then ask for a coupon to help you save a little money today.
- I was able to get a 10% off coupon code to apply to my purchase. Not huge savings, but well worth the few minutes it took to get my discount.
There is little doubt the Live Chat feature at Lands’ End will pay off for you in one way or another. Here is the direct link to a Lands’ End live chat operator. Here is your best strategy for savings:
- By being polite and direct I was able to score an online coupon for 30% off all merchandise with free shipping on $50 or more.
- Lori, my live chat operator, was very receptive to helping me save some money and she had excellent knowledge of Lands’ End sizing and styles which was a very nice bonus.
- If you can’t find a Lands’ End coupon always open up a live chat session and politely ask for one. Chance of success: 95% at the very least.
I opened up an Office Depot live chat session I was not very confident that I would get a coupon code as they can be pretty tight about handing them out. But my buddy Bobbi delivered the goods. Here is your best strategy:
- I simply asked for a $10 off $50 or more coupon and was given it right out of the box, next time I will amp it up and ask for a 20% off coupon. I got nothing to lose.
- Also, it is worth noting that over the years I have received tips that the Office Depot Facebook page is also a great resource to score a coupon when ‘Live Chat’ doesn’t deliver the goods.
I was really impressed with the customer service Shutterfly.com live chat employee “Sweety” gave me. Here is how it went down:
- After I asked her if she had any coupons I could use, she asked me to make sure my order was in my virtual shopping cart so she could take a look at it and find the best coupon for me. Pretty cool.
- After I placed my photo-book in my cart, she took a look at it and came back with the very generous offer of a $10 credit on my photo-book on top of the 25% off site-wide offer Shutterfly was already offering.
- Shutterfly Key: Make sure you add the maximum number of stuff you want to order in your cart, open a Live Chat session and start negotiating the best coupon you can get.
Sierra Trading Post.com
If you’re a frequent shopper at Sierra Trading Post.com you’ll want to use their Live Chat feature to get a coupon code before you finalize your online purchase. Here is the skinny:
- Just open up your chat session right when you get to their site and politely ask them if they have any coupons to help on your purchase.
- My chat rep, Cory, immediately hooked me up with a 30% off $75 or more code. If you’re making a purchase under $75, ask if they have a 25% off coupon available as they often do.
For those of you not familiar with Snapfish, similar to Shutterfly, they specialize in taking your photos and turning them into amazing prints, gifts, and cool books and calendars. Your order total can add up pretty quickly so be sure to hit up the Snapfish live chat feature and ask for a coupon code.
- I simply asked for a coupon code, nothing specific, and my buddy “Shashank” hooked me up with a 30% off coupon. I couldn’t help but think of Morgan Freeman as I collected my savings.
- They also offer up free shipping coupons regularly so if your order is fairly small, consider asking live chat for a free shipping coupon as it will often save you more money than a 30% off code.
Ask the Reader: Have you had any success scoring a coupon code at other online retailers using their ‘Live Chat’ feature? Please let me know in the comments and I’ll check it out – thanks!
By Kyle James
Photo credit to reynermedia.