That, in itself, is not unusual. Email is a low-investment, high-return form of marketing, so if you're on a retailer's mailing list, you're going to get a lot of promotions. But what struck me was that virtually every email was advertising a big sale. Sure, you had the occasional "check out our spring collection" email, but the vast majority were offering in-store and online sales that discounted all or most items. And these were big discounts: For a good two-week period, the chain offered a 30 percent or 40 percent off sale every single day.
The flood of deals has slowed a bit since then, but I'm still seeing very frequent emails from the retailer offering similar discounts. So now I have a rule: If I want to buy something at Banana Republic, I will always wait for a sale. After all, a big discount is probably just a few days away, so why would I ever pay full price?
Based on this research, we've determined that the following six retailers (presented in no particular order) have sales frequently enough that you should almost always avoid paying the sticker price there.
Matt Brownell is the consumer and retail reporter for DailyFinance. You can reach him at Matt.Brownell@teamaol.com, and follow him on Twitter at @Brownellorama.