Good trick-or-treating deals. Officially, winter sales begin, this Wednesday, in France, while, for a few weeks already, most physical or online businesses have already set the tone with private sales. Of course, if the sales are no longer synonymous with frenzied consumption, it is clear that the large colorful cupboards displaying fabulous discounts are still having their little effect. A small effect that can be biased, legally, by unscrupulous sellers, displaying “false” discounts. To avoid this, 20 minutes found Mosc, a mobile application allowing you to track the price history of goods sold on e-commerce sites. This way, you will know if your favorite sneakers at -50% are really at -50%.
For Robert Bréhon, representative of the UFC, what to choose in the Hauts-de-France, shopping is a bit like planning a trip. “The best way to avoid compulsive or unnecessary purchases and getting tricked is to be prepared. By scouting, noting prices and getting an idea of what you need to buy,” he explains to 20 minutes. Without that, we have a good chance of falling for this fabulous thing that we already have less because, all the same, less 70%, it’s interesting. And indeed, it is interesting, if the discount is indeed minus 70%. “Many merchants used to inflate prices just before sales so that when the day came, they could post bigger discounts,” he continues.
A new European directive
A practice that should be eradicated through the European “Omnibus” directive, which entered into force in France at the end of May. Concretely, this obliges physical and online merchants to display the lowest price applied in the month preceding the sales. “If the merchant wants to sell 90 euros for a product that he sold between 100 and 130 euros in the 30 days preceding the promotion, the price crossed out must be 100 euros. The reduction displayed will therefore be 10%”, explains the UFC representative, adding that, if “the rule is not perfect, it is still progress”.
It is still necessary that traders play the game. This is where the Mosc mobile application becomes interesting. Developed and launched two years ago by Mathieu Guffens, a 35-year-old Belgian, it is primarily aimed at the French market, “where e-commerce is used more than in Belgium “, assures its creator. The principle is the same as Waze, except instead of reporting speed cameras, Mosc users build a database of prices. “As soon as a member of the community puts an item in their basket on an e-commerce site, the price of the item is archived. This makes it possible to create a history that can be consulted by users to check price fluctuations,” sums up Mathieu Guffens.
A collaborative app
During sales periods, Mosc makes it easy for its users to check if a price has been revised upwards upstream. “It’s a way of detecting false promotions, believes the founder of the app. But also to see that some e-commerce sites can sometimes change the price of the same good 15 times in a month. In other words, even outside sales, the algorithm warns the customer of the best time to buy the coveted object at the best price.
As the app is collaborative, its effectiveness depends on the size of its community. And two years after its launch, Mosc has nearly 20,000 members and a thousand referenced e-shops. “We find in particular the most important ones, such as Amazon, Zalando, Decathlon or La Redoute, but also smaller shops,” says Mathieu Guffens. At the same time, Mosc is only relevant for products “of a certain value”, such as household appliances, high-tech or branded clothing. Anyway, even if a promotion is genuinely interesting, theUFC What to choose insists on the fact that “one does not buy a discount, but a product”.
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An app that allows you to track down fake discounts for sales
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