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sakura33

Birchbox Points Changes

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We are only at the mid of the year and there are so many changes with Birchbox....

 

1. Coupons disappearing

2. Point for sharing gone

3. Curated box is now available with $50+ purchase...previously I could get one for $10

4. This huge point system change...Point 3 is so BIG that it shadows point 1 and 2.

5. Eventually ACE membership will cost around $500...I am not sure if I will ever hit the ACE status with this point system. But then spending $500 will give me $50 back in their store. Costlier than Sephora VIB...but then I may prefer Sephora over BB.

 

Anything else to add...

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If I cancel my subscription on July 11th, I can still review the samples from a July box for points correct? Since the boxes go live on the 10th?

 

Bummed about this, the point system was the reason I liked birchbox!

Edited by aaclever
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I contacted them about a refund on my last few annual subscription boxes since they won't benefit from the points program that was in place when I bought the sub (essentially a "loss" to me of at least $20). 

 

They gave me a full pro-rated refund. FYI if anyone else with an annual wants out now. It's already taken effect on my account, and the refund is already showing up.

I might need to do this, but my annual sub is up in January so I'm only half way.

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I might need to do this, but my annual sub is up in January so I'm only half way.

 

I had five boxes left. It's worth a shot if you want to try. 

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Thanks to someone on MSA, I found a recent article about Birchbox and their new strategy.  My takeaway is that Birchbox still isn't turning a profit and is the midst of a major identity crisis.   They don't really seem to have a great plan or strategy for the future.  I can't figure out if they just want to get out of the subscription business altogether, or dump their 'old' subscribers in favor of new customers who will use their shop more often to purchase full sized products.  

 

Opening brick and mortar shops seems risky. . .here in Portland metro we have Sephora, Nordstrom, Ulta, Blue Mercury, and a nice locally owned store.  Plus, we have Whole Foods and New Seasons stores with large natural beauty sections.   I don't know how they will set themselves apart from the crowded market.  Just grouping things by item and not brand really isn't anything revolutionary or life changing.  

  

 

here is the article: 

 

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-06-03/birchbox-finds-cute-boxes-filled-with-makeup-aren-t-enough

I find this interesting. I am actually a subscriber who does spend actual money frequently in their store-- I don't use points for all my purchases- I usually hoard them for a big purchase but often I buy many ~$50 orders and don't use my points. Like I said elsewhere- I already prefer Sephora due to their flash shipping and good promo with purchase (so much better than Birchbox usually minus discount codes)- so I see little incentive to shop on Birchbox since their shipping is very slow.

 

But they may have lost me - unless their sub boxes start to look like Allure or something, because I don't see much value in the actual boxes. As many have said- samples are small (and some have less than 1 solid use in them!) and there has been a huge repeat of products - I don't usually go WOW when I see my box-but am usually fine with it because of the points- and considering I also get Sephora which is the same price, and Allure which is only $5 more (actually less because I do the annual sub with them)- I don't see the value in paying $7-10 for these boxes (I bought an annual with the ACE black friday discount). Long story short, I don't see the point in paying ~$10/month for boxes where I enjoy the items less and less when there is no silver lining.

 

As far as focusing on Brick and mortar- I find this bizarre. I thought because of online shopping, brick and mortar is doing terribly for many companies. I hardly shop at them anymore- when I have the convenience of shopping online with promos and ebates, etc. I can't fathom if they opened a ton of brick and mortars and closed down the sub shop, how they would be profitable. Many people still don't even know what Birchbox is-- but they definitely know Sephora and Ulta.

Edited by sakura33
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well I LOVED their point system and often found myself buying products I normally bought elsewhere from them when they offered a discount code because of the points. And sometimes I only re-subbed in order to get one of the PYS I wanted and  more points since I haven't been wowed by their samples lately. I spent ALOT of money in their shop.

 

This will completely stop me from re-subbing ever again unless they have a curated box I HAVE to have (hasn't happened so far) but if we still get points for buying things, I may still buy from them but only if I get a discount code too, which those too have really are far and few between these days!

 

I saw this coming awhile back. Too bad. It was fun while it lasted....

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I always forget to review my samples in time to get the points, but this is still such a bummer!

While Birchbox has had some great products and brands, the actual retail value never compares to other similar price subscription boxes (like say Ipsy). While I would much rather have a $2 value sample of something I will love rather than a $10 value for a product I don't care for so much, I feel like Birchbox needs to step up their game, as not every product is great (I know that personal preference is a thing, and they can not know what I already own, but I have heard multiple times of people with lets say oily skin get super moisturizing creams or etc). Maybe them saving money from this will allow so?

If not I am not sure if Birchbox would be worth $10, with the sample reviewing for points as not being an option anymore

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I always forget to review my samples in time to get the points, but this is still such a bummer!

While Birchbox has had some great products and brands, the actual retail value never compares to other similar price subscription boxes (like say Ipsy). While I would much rather have a $2 value sample of something I will love rather than a $10 value for a product I don't care for so much, I feel like Birchbox needs to step up their game, as not every product is great (I know that personal preference is a thing, and they can not know what I already own, but I have heard multiple times of people with lets say oily skin get super moisturizing creams or etc). Maybe them saving money from this will allow so?

If not I am not sure if Birchbox would be worth $10, with the sample reviewing for points as not being an option anymore

 

  I did the same thing, forgot to review my BB for the last like 4 months, screwed myself out of a bunch of points :( Oh well. My BB are always tiny samples, and most of the time the hair samples are not even for my type of hair. I always get thin/fine hair samples. I have thick wavy to curly hair. For the same price Ipsy had some amazing high value bags, but again I never really got anything I loved. I think I got 3 bags I loved in a year of subbing, otherwise I got mascara or eyeliner allllllll the time. But I'm thinking of resubbing to Ipsy after this. 

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Ugh this sucks. I've gifted birchbox to so many people, raving about the points system. I can't believe they're making such a drastic change.

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I emailed them to find out what will happen to ACE status.  As others have noted, after July you would need to refer 10 people per year or spend $500.  It would be nice if they threw in some bonus features as a consolation for the change in points.  i.e. You become an ACE after 4 boxes or they bring back those 20% off coupons for each shopping holiday.   Does anyone know if you have to be a current subscriber to get referral points?  I wonder if I could just create new accounts each month and refer them from the main. 

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I emailed them to find out what will happen to ACE status.  As others have noted, after July you would need to refer 10 people per year or spend $500.  It would be nice if they threw in some bonus features as a consolation for the change in points.  i.e. You become an ACE after 4 boxes or they bring back those 20% off coupons for each shopping holiday.   Does anyone know if you have to be a current subscriber to get referral points?  I wonder if I could just create new accounts each month and refer them from the main. 

 

Oh great, another change I'm not happy about. Looks like I will no longer be an Ace for the first time since the conception of the ACE program, unless they start doling out the 20% codes again which is very UNLIKELY to happen. Bye bye birchbox.

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Wow, very disappointing.  I'm rarely thrilled with my boxes, but the review points made it bearable.  IMO, the points system is the only uniqueness that made BB worthwhile.  Definitely jumping ship.

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I'll be sticking with BB only because I buy hair care from there that I can't get at Sephora and Ulta and they are too expensive without the points. If I can still get some points and use those towards the hair care it will be worth it to me. I do enjoy getting to try some off brands that I would never consider buying and some of their curated boxes and featured boxes have been worth it. I'll most likely lose my Ace status though because I don't see spending that much. I'm a rouge at Sephora and I just can't do that times two. I really shouldn't be a rouge at sephora either but my makeup obsession gets the best of me. I really need help in that area! lol

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I never got the email so this is all news to me!  What a bummer if it ends up being true.

 

Well the driving force for me to re-sub to BB was to try new products.  I did remember (and loved) the points system if I ever were to buy something from them.  I like that they made it 10 points = $1 but if I can only review 5 samples products in a year(?) then there really is no incentive to continue.  

 

Maybe too many people were hoarding points to cash in--I haven't subbed for over 5 years so I honestly don't know what people were doing with their points.

 

I added myself to the Sephora Play waitlist (hopefully it opens soon).  I need to start shopping there again.  I doubt the return policy at BB is as good as Sephora anyways.  

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yeah, I just fail to see what makes them standout from everything else when points are removed from the equation:

* allure is REALLY well-curated, as in all the products are usable by a wide range of people and seem to fit the season in which the boxes come and there's a nice mix of products, it's rarely skin, makeup or hair heavy
 

* glossybox is (used to be? they are sliding too) more high end + larger samples
 

*boxycharm has more full-size makeup and generally a good mix

 

*birchbox without points, has a ton of HP, foils that are too small to even get a full use out of and terrible curation on the regular boxes..
 

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I have so much stuff yet to use, that I will probably cancel after the July box.  I really enjoyed the points system and without it, I am just not as excited.  I would also like to try a different box, so this will free up space in my budget.

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I've been reading business articles about Birchbox that keep referring to the fact that they've laid off 50 of their 300 employees. I wonder if this is in addition to the 15% of the staff they laid off earlier this year. 

 

I haven't subscribed in months because I just got tired of paying $10/month for disappointment. 

 

The FB Live stuff has been god awful and the quality of their social media content hasn't been great either so I've stopped following them. 

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I'm going to use up my points and cancel.  Without the points, this just is not worth the $10 to me.  Literally, I do not receive products that are worth $10.  Glad my subscription just ran out and I hadn't renewed yet.

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I'm sad about the changes. I heard some folks have had luck consolidating points across accounts and getting refunds for their annual subs.  I have 545 points spread out among several accounts. I wonder if they'd let me consolidate?

 

I'm not ready to let go yet. I might see what July boxes hold, if they're still going to do sample choice and featured boxes? I have two active subs now, I might cancel one and then ride out my annual sub and just select featured boxes since they tend to have new-ish products in them. 

 

I kinda feel like boxes are just going to become redone versions of the same samples, just different variations. Like different scented coola spf's and moisturizing shampoo instead of volumizing, until they close up the sample box branch of their business eventually.  

 

I read a lot of the glassdoor reviews last night. I'm really, like really sad to read they laid people off then went on a trip to Coachella.  That sort of stuff really doesn't sit well with me. I worked for a company in the past where an owner went off to Ireland for a tech conference and was flying planes and sight seeing, while back at home payroll wasn't running for employees...meaning no one got paid. That kind of irresponsible spending is what you get when you give 20 somethings huge amounts of cash in venture funding, they don't have the management experience to run successful startups. Not every 20 something is like that, of course. 

 

Birchbox has been slowly taking away perks since Hayley left all (I think) to drive people away from the subscription box (which is Katia's goal). There are literally no incentives to subscribing now. From the sounds of the glass door reviews it sounds like Katia's goal is to "take on" Sephora. I wish them luck but I think it's gonna be a tough road ahead.

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Are they sending out different e-mails? The e-mail i received was different from the one Squidling posted--mine was just the first 2 bullet points, nothing about there being a new limit of 5 reviews in the third bullet point. 

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Are they sending out different e-mails? The e-mail i received was different from the one Squidling posted--mine was just the first 2 bullet points, nothing about there being a new limit of 5 reviews in the third bullet point. 

Yes one is for current subscribers the other is for non-subscribers.

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I live chatted with Birchbox and am getting them to consolidate all my points from all my accounts. That will give me nearly 600 points. And I have the $10/$50 to use for my birthday this month. Although my chat session was rather cold, I'm happy they're doing whatever for subscribers seem to request right now.

 

I think, I might cancel my second active account depending on how the July PYS and featured boxes look and I might stick out my annual sub for the featured boxes if that continues to be a thing.

 

We'll see, it's clear they're steering everyone towards full size purchases and eliminating the sample boxes to a much smaller portion of their revenue, if they even make revenue on that side of the business.  

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I just re-read the email and we can still earn the points for each 5 samples that we review each month, correct? We just can't review more than that so if you get 7 samples, only first 5 reviews will be counter for points? or am I completely missing the mark? I was thinking that I can then use the points to continue to purchase what I have been buying in the past, I will just lose on the samples that are more than 5 in the box if there are any.

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I just re-read the email and we can still earn the points for each 5 samples that we review each month, correct? We just can't review more than that so if you get 7 samples, only first 5 reviews will be counter for points? or am I completely missing the mark? I was thinking that I can then use the points to continue to purchase what I have been buying in the past, I will just lose on the samples that are more than 5 in the box if there are any.

No, after July you can get points for reviewing 5 items for the life of your subscription.  That's it.

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