An ongoing “buy one get one free” deal from MyPillow may seem like a win for consumers, but according to the Better Business Bureau, it’s actually misleading.
The Better Business Bureau of Minnesota and North Dakota revoked the accreditation of Minnesota-based MyPillow based on consumer complaints, ongoing “buy one get one free deals,” and a false advertising lawsuit.
According to the Better Business Bureau, the makers of MyPillow were repeatedly asked to discontinue their “buy one get one free” (BOGO) offers to no avail.
But what’s the problem with ongoing BOGO offer?
We talked to Barb Grieman, Senior Vice President of the Better Business Bureau (BBB) of Minnesota and North Dakota to find out.
What’s wrong with an ongoing buy one get one free offer?
Grieman said MyPillow advertised a $89.97 BOGO sale, but the sale was ongoing.
“When you make a BOGO a continuous offer, it becomes a regular price of the product,” Grieman said. “So, you can’t offer that sale price for more days during a year, than you do the regular price.”
She said many consumers also complained that MyPillow offered a buy one get one free deal for $89.97 on its website, but a single MyPillow was available for $49.99 online at other retailers.
She said MyPillow was accredited with the BBB and had an A-plus rating, until recently.
“When you become accredited you agree to follow and adhere to the BBB standards and our code of advertising, which clearly states … you can’t make a BOGO a continuous offer, or any deep discount a continuous offer,” she said.
What exactly does the BBB do?
The BBB began in 1912, after a group of business owners became “fed up with trying to compete against misleading advertising,” according to Grieman.
She said the Better Business Bureau of Minnesota and North Dakota was the first BBB in the world.
“They formed a group and started looking into this advertising and asking companies, who they thought were providing misleading advertising to substantiate their claims,” she said. “If they couldn’t, they reported it to the public, and that’s what we do today.”
She said it’s a two fold mission of working for the consumer and to protect the marketplace.
“We want consumers to understand what the savings claim is, and what saving they are getting, which they don’t in this case,” she said. “Second, this is very unfair to businesses in the same industry.”
What else have consumers said about MyPillow?
Many of the 232 complaints filed against the company are in regard to the BOGO offer.
Many times claims of a "full warranty," were not fulfilled. Many consumers had to pay a fee to return the pillow.
Photos of MyPillow on some of the boxes show the "premium, gusseted pillow," when the pillow in the box is actually a standard pillow. According to BBB, the company has addressed this, but some third party providers still have the wrong picture on the box.
What will happen to MyPillow?
Because Better Business Bureau is not an enforcement agency, so they can’t go further than revoking MyPillow’s BBB accreditation, according to Grieman.
MyPillow owner and CEO Mike Lindell responded to the BBB by stating he would not be able to stop the company's BOGO offer in late 2016, but would look at making changes in 2017, KARE-TV reported.
Grieman said MyPillow could turn things around by modifying their advertising and eliminating the ongoing discount offers.