COACH: ONLINE COUPON A HOAX

NEW YORK — A virtual coupon hawking alleged 25 percent discounts on all goods at luxury accessories merchant Coach is nothing but a hoax.
So said officials at the New York-based company Tuesday, who added that the invalid discount coupon, which has been landing in e-mail boxes nationwide, would not be honored at Coach’s 204 stores, its catalog or online. The bogus e-mail coupon promised 25 percent off all Coach products purchased from Dec. 5 through Dec. 16.
Coach did give cards offering a holiday discount to its employees and some of its best customers, but distribution was limited and the cards were numbered, according to the company.
With the slumping economy weighing heavily on e-tailers this holiday, Web merchants have increasingly mined traditional retail promotions to pump up their volume, from discount coupons to print catalogs and free-shipping deals. Ann Taylor, for one, was offering 25 percent off all goods purchased through today, via an e-coupon.
For its part, Coach.com has enhanced its complimentary E-Gift service, which allows customers to send a personalized e-mail message announcing their gift, along with a picture and description of the item. Now, people who purchase gifts at Coach.com/gift can schedule the delivery of their package and they will receive e-mail notification once a gift they’ve ordered has been shipped.
The upgrade of Coach.com’s gift feature was one of several enhancements made to the Web site, which was relaunched for holiday on Nov. 29. Other aspects of the makeover include enlarged product images; more detailed information about the merchandise, and a feature enabling consumers to confirm the availability of products at their local Coach store.
“Our customers’ feedback was a critical component in creating a site that serves their shopping needs both online and in stores,” said a Coach official.

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