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10 Online Shopping Hacks To Save Money
Shopping online has become more and more popular every year and the opportunities to save a lot of money has gone hand in hand with that increase. Included here are ten essential online shopping hacks to help you maximize your savings when you shop online.
1. Tuesdays & Fridays
Which day of the week you shop does matter when it comes to the price of a product and the availability of coupons, sales and deals. The two best days to find all of these things is Tuesdays and Fridays. If you can plan to do your shopping on these two days you will find the best prices and more availability of coupons and sale prices.
2. Swagbucks & Ebates
You should never shop online without first logging into one of these two services. You should check them both out and see which is a better option for your shopping habits and reward goals. Swagbucks and Ebates are both great programs and reward you for the shopping you are already doing.
You simply join the program, it's free, and then before you shop log into the account and then proceed to the store you want to shop through. You will receive the same coupons and deals whether you proceed to the website through these reward programs or go directly but by using the reward site you will earn a rebate amount or points towards a gift card. The more you shop online the more you can earn back.
3. Join Honey
No actual sweet honey will not get you savings online but by adding JoinHoney.com as a browser extension you will have a coupon and deal finder working for you as you shop and will let you know when it finds you a sale or coupon. This is a really easy way to make sure you always get the best prices and don't miss out on savings and coupons.
4. Join Newsletters & Fan Clubs
Before we get into this money saver, first you should set up a second email address just for online shopping and use this new email for all receipts and coupon mail.
Now that you have that separate email account you opt-in and sign up for newsletters, fan pages and clubs from the different stores and products you like. They will send you discounts, coupon codes and special deals. This can be big savers and on your birthday and joining anniversary you usually receive free items or extra discounts making this even more worthwhile.
When you utilize a second email just for shopping you will have all your new "junk" mail delivered into one account and not have your primary email bogged down. This is also an easier way to keep track of your online receipts and shipping notices.
Additionally, I also recommend following and "liking" all your favorite stores and brands through their social media accounts as another way to receive special coupons, codes and discounts.
5. Go Incognito
When you visit a store for the first time you will often get a pop-up with a discount code but if you do not buy a that moment then that discount will often be gone when you return since the stores' software settings will recognize you as a return visitor.
The best tip for searching for discounts and codes is to do it with an incognito setting in Chrome or clear all browser cookies first. There is a tutorial video below about how to use the Incognito Browse if you are unsure how it works. When you search for coupons from this setting, or clear the cookies, your visits are not tracked so you can receive the first visit discount when you are ready to buy.
6. Abandoned Cart
There are times when you have looked for a discount or coupon only to come up empty-handed but before you give up there is one last hack that might score you a discount. This is a hack that should not be used often but can be very useful for use as a last measure of savings.
The idea is pretty simple, visit and shop the store and place the items you want in the basket but before you actually enter your payment information exit the store. This creates an abandoned cart scenario for the seller.
Most stores have cart recovery software in place to attempt to lure you back to finish the purchase. Typically this will involve an email with an enticement for returning and completing the checkout and sometimes it will actually make you an offer when you start to exit the site, called an "exit pop". After you receive your enticement you can complete your purchase and enjoy the savings.
7. Gift Cards
If you have read a few of my other Hubs you will recall I discussed using www.raise.com to purchase gift cards at discounted prices. If you are new to my Hubs then I suggest you check out this website (no, I am not an affiliate and make nothing from you visiting) and see the savings possible on gift cards. Most of the gift cards are electronic and you will receive the card in your email very quickly.
The hack is essentially you purchase the discounted gift cards for the store you want to shop from and, hopefully, also use coupons from the store and you have then doubled up on your discounts very easily. This can also be combined with the ebates and swagbucks hack to generate rewards as well.
After you have shopped and used your discounted gift cards, applied coupons and shopped though ebates/swagbucks to maximize your rewards you can then employ the rebate hack.
There are 2 ways that rebates can work for you. One is the Ibotta app that allows you to receive rebates quickly and easily from purchases online (and in the store) and redeem your rebates for cash or gift cards.
The second way to use the rebate plan is to sign up for free with Paribus. This site will track your online purchases and if an item you bought is offered at a lower price within the rebate timeframe for the store the software will automatically request the price rebate for you.
These two rebate options can be great money savers and both are very easy to use!
Camels are pretty cute and useful in the desert but there is a website that can save you money when you shop on Amazon. The amazing thing about Amazon prices is that they use a very complex algorithm that adjusts and changes prices on millions of items every day.
The issue, as a consumer, becomes who do you know if you are purchasing the item for the best price? The hack for this is easy, head over to the website www.camelcamelcamel.com and join this Amazon price tracker service for free. You simply enter the Amazon URL or keywords to find the product you want to purchase and the price tracker tool will tell you the price history of the item so you can determine if the current price is your best deal.
10. Stack Coupons
This hack is all about leveraging your coupons and maximizing your savings. Most stores will allow you to combine at least two coupon codes, such as a percentage off and free shipping. There are some stores that allow more and in the case of Kohl's you can actually stack up to four coupon codes.
Each store is different and you may have to test it out to stack coupons but you can save some serious money by utilizing the coupon stack method.
When you shop you can easily get in the habit of following these online shopping hacks and start savings some big chucks of cash!
So before your shop next time be sure to check your email for newsletter deals, shop on the right days (and incognito), let honey.com find you coupons, sign in thru a shopping rewards site, stack your coupons and pay with a discounted gift card.
If you are shopping on amazon be sure to check your prices through camelcamelcamel.com. After all your shopping is done don't forget the rebates!