My husband and I had been looking for a couch for about a year and weren’t finding what we were looking for in terms of style, comfort and affordability. Finally a couple of months ago I discovered a very affordable and comfortable microfiber couch from HOM Furniture. My husband hadn’t had a chance to see the couch so when the subject came up again this past Saturday, we decided to go take a look with the kids.
As we were walking in the store, signs were plastered all over with Ice Age 3 characters that read “FREE ICE AGE 3 GIFT PACK with ANY $499 purchase!”
And while we weren’t necessarily ready to commit, I pushed the issue. If we are going to buy this $600 couch anyway, why not buy it when we can get the Ice Age 3 gift package with a $92 value?? Since it is on sale as well it seemed like the perfect time to buy.
So we took the plunge and purchased the couch. At the end of the transaction I asked about the Ice Age 3 promotion items and was told this purchase was not eligible because it was listed as a “Colossal Buy”. Which of course means nothing to me. I would have assumed perhaps clearance items or gift cards weren’t included. But given that every sign in the store said ANY purchase, I assume that means ANY purchase. Any does mean any right? Any does not mean only some $499 purchases. It does not imply your $499 may be eligible. It implies that if you make a $499 purchase, no matter what, you get the Ice Age 3 promotion items.
But I must be mistaken. Maybe I am not clear on the definition of any since that is exactly how it was advertised in their store signage.
According to Webster’s Dictionary, the definition of any: unmeasured or unlimited in amount, number, or extent
Hmm…that sounds like I should have walked out of Hom Furniture with an Ice Age 3 gift, does it not?
Now, to their credit, I did find in their ad in the teeniest, tiniest print that Colossal Buys were not included in the promotion. But that exclusion isn’t what is really irking me here. What really started to piss me off as I left Hom Furniture is that all the signage says ANY and there is no verbage indicating exclusions. While there was an asterisk with “see store for details” or “see store associate for details” they left out anything that would tell a consumer that not every (which is implied by the word any) $499 purchase or more was eligible.
To not be deceptive to the consumer, the word any should not be used. They should have simply stated that with a $499 purchase you can get a Ice Age 3 promotion package and included the following, “*Some exclusions apply. See store associate for details.” That’s it. That is all that I would expect from a company that is upfront and honest in their advertising. It indicates that if I am to make a purchase perhaps influenced by this free gift, I should probably double check to be certain I qualify. But leaving out the this disclaimer and using the word “any” in their verbage is clearly deceptive marketing practices. One that made me angrier and angrier after I left the store. At this point it isn’t about the free gift I thought I was getting and now am not. It is the principal of false advertising.
My couch is currently on order and I am seriously contemplating not continuing with the purchase. Which is actually sad since it took so long to find what we wanted. At the same time, I loathe companies using shady marketing tactics and cringe even thinking about giving my business to these types of companies.
I can’t be alone in being sick and tired of being treated in this manner. Lure me in with a special or deal and then take it away. HOM Furniture, you should be ashamed of these practices!
Update: HOM Furniture did reach out to me on 11/16 offering their regrets about my experience and offering me the Ice Age 3 Gift Pack.