Online Store Razer Accidentally Posts 90%-Off Coupon -- and Honors It

×
Razer CEO Min-Liang Tan
Razer/FacebookRazer CEO Min-Liang Tan holds the Razer Edge.
It's a story we've heard before: A retailer posts a coupon or markdown that seems too good to be true, then quickly pulls it when it realizes its mistake.

Usually, the story ends with the retailer announcing that it won't honor the erroneous coupon, and voiding the transactions of any customers who managed to snag those once-in-a-lifetime deals. But one video game company bucked that trend by agreeing to honor an incredible 90%-off coupon code that was mistakenly circulated earlier this week.


Razer Coupon

Razer is an online retailer of video game hardware peripherals like controllers, keyboards and headphones. The coupon code, which spread rapidly in social media, was good on purchases at its U.K. Razerzone site. Razer quickly moved to disable the code, but not before many eager gamers snatched up heavily discounted hardware.

On Friday, Razer CEO Min-Liang Tan took to Facebook to explain that the code was accidentally made active by a third party that was attempting to test the website's shopping cart. Nevertheless, he went on to announce that the company would honor the code for customers who bought "single products for their own use."
That means that opportunists who used the code to buy large amounts of merchandise with the intention of reselling it on eBay and elsewhere may yet have their orders voided. Still, it's an incredibly consumer-friendly move by Razer, especially when you consider how much money honoring the transactions with cost. The CEO said in his statement that "thousands of orders" were placed in a matter of hours, resulting in "an insane amount of losses."

And Razer would be well within its rights to void those orders. A couple years ago, for instance, the Sears (SHLD) website accidentally offered the iPad 2 for $69, but quickly took the down the offer and canceled the orders of anyone who had purchase it at that price. More recently, Best Buy (BBY) forgot to exclude gift cards from a 50%-off coupon, resulting in many customers snatching up Amazon gift cards at half-price. It soon realized its mistake and replaced it with a revised coupon.

Razer could have gone the same route and saved itself a lot of money, but the consumer-friendly move is winning the company plaudits on blogs and in social media. No doubt the company hopes that the long-term PR benefits balance out the revenue losses it incurred this week. But even if its choice was based solely on business considerations, it's still a classy move.

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.

Increase your money and finance knowledge from home

How much house can I afford

Home buying 101, evaluating one of your most important financial decisions.

View Course »

Intro to different retirement accounts

What does it mean to have a 401(k)? IRA?

View Course »

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum

11 Comments

Filter by:
Neil Fox

Still overpriced.

April 25 2013 at 3:51 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jeff

im not fooled never heard of company good way to get noticed

April 21 2013 at 9:43 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
supermolar

they will probably just about break even

April 21 2013 at 4:13 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
RonRuthNik

Unusual, but a smart long term move, albeit costly short term.

April 21 2013 at 3:20 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
Judith

Wow - a company with integrity. Honoring their coupon even though it was in error is, IMO, a first on the web. I don't use any of the types of products they sell, but I hope that those who do will buy from them even if they hadn't before. This company cares more about its customers than its bottom line and by denying bulk sales it has reached a common-sense solution to the error.

April 21 2013 at 1:16 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
jelun

It's nice to see a company that would honor their coupon regardless of it being an error. I hope that those who were able to cash in on this continue to give them business.

April 21 2013 at 5:54 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
jumpa60m

your computer will soon just be a spot on the web.

April 21 2013 at 5:34 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
dougm90248

The Lakewood (CA) Tri-Shopper ran this notice:
"We are not responsible for errors in Clafficied Ads."

April 21 2013 at 12:29 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Dad

If you have a business, good will is one of the most valuable items in your inventory. I was in business most of my life. My motto was and still is, "The customer is always right even if their wrong." It really pays off. Word of mouth is very important.

April 20 2013 at 11:49 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
tmoschetti

"Razer could have gone the same route and saved itself a lot of money, but the consumer-friendly move is winning the company plaudits on blogs and in social media."

The people who make up the new "what can America do for ME crowd." I wonder how many of these people have ever owned a business, or even had a job. No. being a blogger is not a job.
And there is no more catalyst for the degredation of the traditional culture of our soceity than the "Social" media.

April 20 2013 at 12:16 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply