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Target News: My TargetWeekly & Coupon Value Issues

by Beth @ In Good Cents on August 31, 2010 · 36 comments

Target is making headlines recently.  Some good news.  Some not so good news.  But, both you need to know about!

:: Coupon Value Issues

First, lets start with the bad, which is also the most important for you to know about as consumers.  Recently, Target made a few changes to their system, so that coupons would automatically adjust down if an item was less than the value of the coupon.  Unfortunately, the upgrade isn't working properly the end result is that many customers aren't getting the full value for their coupons.

Coupons that are for multiple purchases, like $1/2 or a $2/3, are the ones causing the problem.  Lets say you purchase two items for $0.75 each and try to use a $1/2 coupon.  Since the coupon isn't more than the value of the items individual prices, you should end up paying $0.25 each, without any adjustments being made.  However, their new system is comparing the full value of the coupon to the price of a single item, and adjusting the coupon down to $0.75, not giving consumers the full value.

I had hoped that once Target found out, they'd fix the problem immediately or find a temporary solution until a fix could be found, but days are flying by and it seems that Target is still "working on a fix", while consumers are getting short changed.  In the end, until a solution is found, you need to watch cash registers carefully, check your receipts, and make sure you're getting full value for your coupons!

Target is urging consumers to speak up and point out issues with their coupon values, so if you experience any problems that your local Target won't fix, make sure to contact Headquarters!  Hopefully, this won't last much longer though.

:: My TargetWeekly

On the bright side, Target did release some new technology that is also making headline and works wonderfully - My TargetWeekly!  You can now register with Target, then customize the ad to match what you want to see, plus make a custom shopping list from your new personalized ad and get alerts when specific items on your list go on sale.  Here's how:

  1. Head to My TargetWeekly and register via Facebook.
  2. View the weekly ad by module, page, or category.
  3. Flip through the sales and remove modules that don't interest you.  For example, don't have a pet?  With a click of the "X", you can remove all pet sale notifications.
  4. Next, add modules you do want to see.  Have a baby?  Make sure you add the "Kids + Baby" module to see the baby sale items each week.
  5. Now, when you scroll over a sale item, an arrow will appear.  From here, you can tell Target that you "Love It" or add it to "My Weekly List" for it to appear on your customized shopping list.
  6. And finally, looking for something specific?  Dreaming of a new HDTV for football season?  Set up a "My Deal Alert" to get notified when it goes on sale!

You can even get more detailed.  Vegetarians can remove all meat from their weekly ad, while couponers like us can make sure to add the "Featured Coupons".

Now, if they'd only tell us if the coupons on their site were manufacturer or store coupons, so we didn't waste ink printing coupons we think are store coupons, only to find out they are manufacturer.  Or maybe show us which items in the circular have a matching store coupon!  That would be wonderful.

Don't forget to check out this week's Target Deals and the Ongoing Target Deals for more opportunities to save.

Beth from In Good Cents is the Deal Seeking Mom Store Expert for Target. At In Good Cents, she teaches her readers the skills they need to dramatically cut their own grocery budgets.

{ 36 comments… read them below or add one }

1 krystle August 31, 2010 at 8:53 pm

Just so you all know I wanted to share this with you... I am a supervisior of the front end at a Target store and we recieved some communication about the coupon values not being correct and how to fix it a couple of days ago so most of you shouldnt have a problem, I hope anyways. I know the Target across ton from me is a big fat hassle to shop at if you are a coupon clipper like myself so I REFUSE to go there. Best of luck to you but just wantedto make you aware that the stores have recieved communication on how to fix it for 'now'

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2 Sandi August 31, 2010 at 8:54 pm

Today at Target some of my coupons went in fine, I watched the cashier like a hawk! Then, as I double checked my receipt some went in as "$0.00". Ugh! I had to go back to customer service, they had to pull all my coupons and then give me the money back- i ended up getting about $10 back in missing coupons. This is the second time I have caught this- I can't even imagine the number of times I didn't catch it. Very frustrating!

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3 Danielle August 31, 2010 at 9:11 pm

I don't like how the receipts read now it makes it hard to figure out if they entered the coupon correctly and what your total savings is. I also had several problems with my coupons coming up as "$0.00" I really hope they get this fixed soon.

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4 Joy September 1, 2010 at 9:55 am

Target Qs will always show up on screen as $0.00-. The item price automatically adjusts on receipt. For example, say you bought cereal for $3 and had a Target Q for $1 off. The Q when scanned will show up on cashier's screen as $0.00-. But if you look at receipt the price will already reflect the $1 being deducted. It will say $2 for price of cereal. Not $3 with $1.00- underneath. Sometimes it may say underneath "Coupon $1.00 off $3.00." Only MFR Qs show up as $1.00- (or whatever) at end off item price or bottom of receipt. Wonky, I know. It gets very confusing when you stack Target Qs with MFR Qs.

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5 Ashley Goodrich August 31, 2010 at 9:38 pm

I have been incredibly frustrated shopping at target lately. On three different occassions the register has scanned my coupons in at $0.00 then last thursday the register crashed in the middle of me swipping my card. The manager told me that it didn't go through so he re-rang me up and I paid for it again. Long behold I checked my bank account 2 days later and sure enough the first transaction had gone through. Now they are telling me my bank has to file an unauthorized debit card transaction appeal inorder for me to get my money back. In order to do this I have to cancel my card and get a new one so then I'm without a bank card for close to two weeks and I'm suppose to be going on vacation next week. I am furious. Target has not been very helpful or apologetic either. They are NOT on my favorite store list right now.

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6 Chriscia August 31, 2010 at 10:03 pm

I was in today and used the $2/2 shout coupons on the shout wipes for .97. The coupons adjusted down to .97, so the cashier just scanned each twice, but 1/2 way through they started beeping that there were no items. She manually added them in and I triple checked my reciept. So I wonder if the "fix" for now is to simply scan the coupons however many times is needed.

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7 Mrs. Practical August 31, 2010 at 10:08 pm

I love Target but today I actually e-mailed them a complaint. I don't know if the cashiers are just lazy or ignorant but on two seperate occasions, my B1G1 coupons were not accounted for. The clerk didn't go back through to look up the price of the item so it could be removed. Last week, I caught the error and it was rectified in Guest Services. Today, I wasn't so lucky. Two items, totaling $5.68 should have been FREE. The response to the e-mail provided a phone number I'm supposed to call about my complaint. I'm hoping they can do something for me. We'll see, though. Your point about watching and checking your receipt is a good one - one that could save you $5.68 or more.

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8 Angeline September 1, 2010 at 12:30 am

Thanks DSM for posting this. I love Target, but lately I have been having huge issues shopping there with all my great coupons. The coupons that are printed off of the computers are not easily scanned and many of the cashiers become upset when they have difficulty scanning them. One time the cashier actually put the light on when she was having difficulty and the supervisor came over and said, "we don't take the coupons if we can't scan them." I usually don't leave comments but I have been having so many issues shopping at Target lately I am tempted to go to Walmart from now on with all the troubles. The receipts can also be difficulty to read and track with manufactur coupons versus the Target coupons to see if they were actually taken or not.

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9 RayAnne September 20, 2010 at 6:20 pm

Hi Angeline! My Target Web Coupons were first printing out smudged but I went ahead and went to Target with coupons in hand. I became a little bit upset myself when I got to the cash register the employee immediately told me "if the coupons don't scan then you can use them" (I believe this was last week or so when there was a DSM post for Huggies for .89 cents each) So of course they didn't scan so she just handed them back to me. She did not even try to manually enter them in. So when I got home I emailed Target Corporate and complained. They emailed back with a toll free number and reference for Guest Relations. They sent me 2 $3 coupons off with their apologies. The next time I went the girl went ahead and manually entered the coupon. =) I am still a little upset because now under the barcode the numbers go off the coupon and through the little scissors. =( No Bueno...

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10 RayAnne September 20, 2010 at 6:22 pm

OH and the Guest Relations Agent from Target advised me to call in anytime you have a problem with coupons while you're there @ Target. He stated if they don't scan then the employee should always try to enter the coupon manually, if the numbers don't take, THEN they won't accept the coupon.

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11 jennifer September 1, 2010 at 12:52 am

this is great information to know, i have been avoiding target anyway and now i guess with good reason. Coupons have always been an issue there with me but this one takes the cake.
sorry target, but you are making too many mistakes, im content using my coupons and spending my money elsewhere.

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12 Lori September 1, 2010 at 8:28 am

I've had a ton of problems at Target lately, and have given up completely. I've been so frustrated about it that I've returned most of the non-perishables. They aren't getting my business anymore.

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13 Lisa September 1, 2010 at 8:47 am

What I have noticed is that the Target coupons I use will show $0.00 but it really does take the prices off as my total drops.

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14 heather v September 1, 2010 at 1:58 pm

This past weekend I used a BOGO coupon at Target. I asked the cashier if the coupon went through, he assured me it did. When I got in the car. Sure enough it did not! Plus one of the items was priced high then what it said on the self!! so annoying!

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15 Alan September 2, 2010 at 3:37 pm

Thanks for the great and informative post, Tara. You do a great job. Thanks also to all the commenters.

I found out the hard way on one issue. On the recent $1 off produce item coupon, I went through 3 times (to the car and back) with my 6 bananas or couple oranges (and a few other repeat items), and only later, did I realize on the produce, it was taking off only one orange or one banana. I learned a little lesson to read coupons carefully, and don't assume anything. The operative word here was ITEM.

It wasn't worth the hassle of going back in and returning anything for the small price difference, and I was really tired of being there so long anyway, so just left.

On the whole, I think shopping at Target and Walmart given all the variable hassles, is generally not worth my time except for specific items/reasons/high coupon values. I won't deal with any coupon under $1 or less than 20% or so of item price, and try to stay away from complicated coupon scenarios.

Even though I could eventually push through and get things rang up right, it's generally not worth all the hassle or even potential hassle to me. It already takes longer to shop in these stores generally due to their size, parking, lines, etc.

In general, I'm usually not that impressed with overall Walmart or Target pricing either -- except on select certain items.

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16 Cheryl September 24, 2010 at 7:47 pm

I went to Target last night and didn't know the coupons are adjusting down if the item is less than the cost. I used two tide coupons, one for $1 and one for $1.50 on the travel size liquid tides and expected to have $0.56 towards the rest of my items. Then, some of my easy coupons didn't go through and I wasn't about to go back before they closed with my three month old. I worked at Target as a cashier and always made sure coupons went through right the first time. Cashiers are timed on the transaction and get a score of 'good', 'satisfactory' ect. This may be why some cashiers don't 'care' about your coupons. They're trying to rush through it, to get that good grade. Also a question I have - Is Target being reimbursed for the face value of the coupon, when they're only taking off the cost of the item for us?

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17 Daisy September 28, 2010 at 10:51 am

I happened to come across this site today and am glad to see I'm not that only one frustrated by Target recently. I just returned from a trip there where an item was marked as $1.48 on the shelf but rang up $6.99 (barcodes and everything matched the shelf sticker - I tripled checked it). They said they were having a problem with the wrong prices being printed on shelf stickers recently and the best they could offer was 30% off $6.99. So irritating - it's really making me reconsider where I shop!

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18 Dalla November 3, 2010 at 4:42 pm

I went to Target today to take advantage of the Glade candles. The salesperson told me she could only take up to five coupons on the same type of product. I had 10 candles but she would only take 5 coupons. It was still a deal!

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19 ann November 3, 2010 at 7:43 pm

I was extremely frustrated when I used a coupon straight from Similac that said if you bought 2 containers of formula (any type) you would get a set of the travel bottles for free. I love those because they work GREAT in the diaper bag. However, because it wouldn't scan and the only one pictured was the blue one the manager refused to take the coupon and told me that it was to prevent fraud. Now what really bothered me is that they are the only store within 20 miles of my house that even has the travel formula so it's not like I could just go to Wal-Mart and get it. They worst part was that both the cashier and the manager were acting like I was trying to take advantage of them. It was embarrassing and humiliating.

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20 Sam in AZ November 3, 2010 at 9:11 pm

On 3 occassions I used the Kraft $5 off 5 cheese products and then used the Target web coupons that are $1 off 2 Kraft cheese products. Well the first time it when the cashier scanned my Kraft $5 the registered beeped, she put it down, scanned all my other coupons, I had to tell her that the $5 did not take off, so she did it. On my 2 other trips I took the kids with me-which I know now is a NO-NO when watching you coupons at Target. Now my last visit was just On Friday, 10/30, so on my last 2 visits I had, after I paid and look at my receipts I had to go to customer service and get my $5 back. I will say this if you have that Kraft $5 off 5 coupon bring the whole sheet with you so that if there is a problem, it list all products and you can say it was a whole sheet of paper, that what helped me.

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21 shiznit November 7, 2010 at 12:57 am

bought some meat on sale (half off) but it scanned at the regular price, so i had the cashier go back and fix it. when i got home i noticed that there were 2 price tags and barcodes on it: one for the regular price and one for the sale. so which one gets read by the scanner is just random?

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22 Tara Kuczykowski November 7, 2010 at 8:59 am

I think the clearance tag is supposed to be placed over the original bar code to prevent the wrong one from being inadvertently scanned. Sounds like someone was just careless in their placement.

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23 shiznit November 7, 2010 at 10:46 am

that is clearly not the case. the entire label with both price tags above and below was printed as one unit. it has a perforation so that the sale tag can easily be removed when the sale expires (today).

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