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  1. #1
    Analytics Dude Kevin's Avatar
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    Expired Coupon Language
    Just curious, as i can't sit down today and read ALL my merchants T&C's on this (but will as I ad them in the capacity I'm describing here).

    For the "publishing" of expired coupon codes, is it more often worded that Coupon Codes must be unpublished when expired, or that the expiration date must be included (with year) in VERY close and obvious proximity to the code?

    The reason I ask is that I'm not running a couponing site per se, but I often blog about sales and events that are occuring at merchants that are of interest to my readers.

    Do I have to unpublish posts that include codes once they are expired? Or is making it VERY obvious that they are expired enough.

    As an example, I published a blog post about EMS's Upgrade Your Gear sale. If, and only if, there was a coupon code associated with that, am I obliged to remove that post now, or is listing the expiration in the post sufficient?
    Kevin Webster
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  2. #2
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    What good do the expired coupons serve for your readers/customers? That should guide your decision. If there's a real benefit to consumers, leave it.

    Most of the sites I see that leave expired coupons do so for one of three reasons: 1) They're lazy, 2) They're not automated, or 3) They're just putting out SE bait. None of that helps consumers or the merchants. (And in the long run, I doubt it helps the affiliates, as merchants and consumers will not be happy.)
    Michael Coley
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  3. #3
    Analytics Dude Kevin's Avatar
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    Oh, don't get me wrong. There's zero value in it really, even from an SEO perspective. I write plenty of blog posts that have a 100% bounce rate, I don't need to add more.

    My question is simply to get a feel for how most merchants word it, since while I'm not "lazy" per se, I'm bound to forget here and there. Especially as my blog catalog grows.
    Kevin Webster
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  4. #4
    Antisocial Media Expert ProWebAddict's Avatar
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    I am not lazy and I don't delete blog posts. The posts clearly say when the deal expires and the posts are dated so there's nothing unethical about it.

    Am I doing it for SEO purposes? Not in particular, I just take a lot of time to write my posts so I am not deleting them.

    But what if I was leaving them for SEO purposes. Is that wrong? Excuse me for (hypothetically) trying to get ahead. Just because someone lands on an old post it doesn't mean they won't go clicking around for current posts. But that's wrong of me to think that right?

    There are bigger issues to worry about.

    As for a merchants perspective...let's see who answers...

  5. #5
    Affiliate Manager guinness618's Avatar
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    OOH! OOH!!! Let me take the bait!
    As an AM, I don't allow affiliates to post unauthorized affiliate coupons, expired or not.
    As a customer, it's very frustrating to have to deal with expired codes and I am more apt to just find another site that has dependable codes, with clear expiration dates and other redemption criteria.
    Not removing expired coupons in the hopes of getting ahead is like a "bait and switch" isn't it? Promising something then not delivering?

  6. #6
    Antisocial Media Expert ProWebAddict's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by guinness618
    Not removing expired coupons in the hopes of getting ahead is like a "bait and switch" isn't it? Promising something then not delivering?
    No because I am not optimizing my site for the terms "[store name] coupons"

    I have more than delivered, but then again to understand you'd have to see my site . I don't leave the posts in hopes of getting ahead, I leave them because I am not going to delete something that took me 25 minutes to write x x-amount of posts.

    The only reason I even mentioned getting ahead is because I think it's silly when people get all hopped up over "oh my goodness, they are only doing that for linkbait or to get search engine traffic!"

    Ummm...duh. Isn't that the point to websites? As long as it's not spammy, stealing content, or cookie stuffing statements like that make me laugh my butt off.

    If you are going to throw up pages with just lists of coupons then ok, feel free to delete them, but some sites actually go into more detail than that. I can name 3 right now (not including mine) but I won't..and guess what, they have archives of posts from years ago.

    How dare they not delete those posts!

    But guess what, they seem to be doing just fine in terms of traffic and sales. To each his own.

    Edit: Here's an example right here. I am only posting this because it's a big company and not a private affiliate. Should CNET have to go back and delete all of their posts that contain sales and specials? Affiliate links or not, they are still leaving up dated information.

    I guess new people coming to the site from SE's would be upset about deals that expired in Feb.

  7. #7
    Analytics Dude Kevin's Avatar
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    As an AM, I don't allow affiliates to post unauthorized affiliate coupons, expired or not.
    That's a separate issue Posting unauthorized coupons should be bootable period. As long as it's clear that it's unauthorized.

    I mean publisher coupons available to me. Some with unending end dates, or really long term end dates.
    Kevin Webster
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  8. #8
    The Seal of Aproval rematt's Avatar
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    Kevin, I think of a Blog as an electronic journal and the purpose of a journal is to document a point in time. Just like you wouldn't rip the pages out a paper journal once they are no longer current (notice I didn't say relevant or topical) you also wouldn't delete a blog entry just because it has passed an arbitrary point in time.

    An expired coupon could very well provide the type of information a user was looking for if they were trying to determine a merchants pattern of issuing coupons or wanted to compare a current coupon to a past issuance. The value of information is the information itself (did that make any sense?).

    Just make sure that the expiration dates are prominent and assume your readers understand how to look for the published date.

    -rematt
    "I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant." - Richard Nixon

  9. #9
    ABW Ambassador newestuser's Avatar
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    if its a blog, i wouldn't worry about it. chances are after time whatever product you had listed will have changed in price, or be replaced with a new version too, and you can't really be expected to keep up with it.
    That said, a lot of merchants say in their terms that you can't have expired coupons at all on the site, so just read the terms 1st.

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