What’s up with the “2 for 1” sales trend these days?

My thinking on pricing,  rates, and value is pretty clear. And I don’t understand why some people think every deal is a bargain:

  • “Buy 1, get 1 free” suggests the item is overpriced.
  • “Buy 1, get the second free (just pay separate shipping)” suggests the product is so cheap that all the profit is built into the shipping cost.
  • “Used to be [a lot more], but really great price today” tells me the product is pretty close to worthless. And no one’s buying it and we desperately want to get rid of our inventory.

I’m fine with sales–everyone knows that’s a temporary drop in your profit margin. (And “2 for 1,” used judiciously, can serve that aim.) But when your business model is all about discounting, then I start to get worried.

What about you? Seen any deals lately that aren’t bargains?

Photo by Anthony Easton (Flickr).