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An Online Shopping Guide For Best Deals in Singapore

Updated on July 20, 2015

Popular Online Stores

I pride myself on being a savvy shopper who gets the best quality at the best price with the least amount of effort and maximum enjoyment. So it is no wonder that I am a huge fan of online shopping. As Singapore gets more crowded, brick and mortar stores have quickly lost their appeal. Increasingly so, I find myself going shopping and coming back with nothing. Sure, my wallet thank me but let's get real, the shopping bug bit me and it isn't letting go!

As every savvy shopper knows, just like traditional stores, not all online stores are created equal. Once you get past the hurdle of navigating which are the best stores, it will save you time, money and energy. To continue to do more online shopping of course!

Below are some of the pros and cons of each of the popular online stores. Groupon Singapore, Singsale, HipVan, Qoo10, Reebonz and StreetDeal Singapore.

Daily Deal Sites Like Groupon and StreetDeal

2 things to look out for when it comes to daily deal sites is how reliable is the site promoting the deal (Groupon Singapore or StreetDeal Singapore in this case) and how reliable are their third party vendors.

These deals are usually of a promotional nature with the idea of converting a first time customer into a frequent one so these prices are largely reduced but cannot last. It's a good deal especially if you want to try out a service such as a massage or facial at a reduced rate but do not mind paying the full rate in future. Or if you want to try a new activity like indoor golf for example, just for novelty sake and would probably not do it consistently.

Beware of unethical third party vendors who cannot deliver, especially if said vendor has no website, no brick or mortar store, has a home address and no social media presence. It is easy for such fly-by-night vendors to close down suddenly without any damage to their reputation, also it would be hard to find these vendors again if there are future problems, after all, it is often a once off deal.

Remember also to read the fine print in these coupons because it often involves additional cost on top of the initial advertised deals. I have also found better prices for the same products just from a quick Google search.

Verdict

My experience with Groupon has been satisfactory so far, every delivery has been timely and sent in good condition. I prefer buying products rather than services from them because the risk is lower, especially if it is a product with a warranty from an established brand such as Bose or Panasonic, etc. I can always look for these companies in case of future problems.

As for StreetDeal Singapore, I have had a terrible experience with them and found out more than 200 people have had such similar complaints, read what I wrote about in more detail HERE.

Unlike Qoo10.sg which offers daily bargains as well, Qoo10.sg has a consumer feedback section which has been very helpful when making a decision. I have not been disappointed in purchasing from Qoo10.sg, what I buy is exactly what I want which has translated to an overall remarkably more enjoyable experience.

Read on for more about my Qoo10.sg experience.

Shop till you drop

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Excellent Bargains at Asian eBay - Qoo10

If you haven't heard of Qoo10, I have to ask you, where have you been? At first glance, I found it a little cluttered for my liking but as I got more familiar with it, I realised there are really some excellent deals to be had. Just think of it as an Asian version of eBay with affordable deals right at our doorstep. Hey, what isn't manufactured in Asia nowadays?

The company behind Qoo10 is Giosis Pte. Ltd, a joint venture company formed with eBay, the world's largest online marketplace with the aim of become Asia's leading online marketplace. The Giosis Group currently operates 7 localised online marketplaces in 5 countries including Japan and Singapore and plans to expand into more Asian countries in the near future.

The best thing is that Qoo10 has an office and shipping hub right in Singapore as well as many other countries. Buying from a domestic seller has never been easier. It is a place for anything big to small. From a TV to wet wipes, you are sure to find a few sellers up your alley.

The website isn't easy to navigate, other than the straight up buy from a particular seller, it is spilt between Daily Deals, Group Buy, Time Sale, Auction, etc. The instructions aren't great and navigating the site can be challenging.

I akin it to the digital version of the bustle of a crowded Pasar Malam (Malay and Indonesian word that literally means "night market"). There are also a lot of Q this and Q that such as Q Points, Q Money, Q Stamp, Q Token and Coupon. It does get confusing.

These do offer you additional savings if used wisely though. For a guide on how to shop like a pro on it, go HERE.

Verdict

I have purchased many items such as wet wipes to make up brushes to chargers to clothing to phone covers to shoes on this site. Every single item has been delivered quickly, within 1 day or 2 and in good condition, not a single package has gone missing. It's now my no. 1 to go to site for daily necessities and products. Unlike Singsale which has some great prices but it takes SO long, the excitement of shopping has long faded. I am often left thinking "Oh, what is it again?"

Read more about my Singsale experience below.

Singsale, HipVan & Reebonz

Singsale carries designer brands at a really good price but the time taken for delivery is ZZZZZ. Part of online shopping is receiving the package while the excitement is still fresh. Singsale's delivery schedule is so elastic, it makes Lycra look bad. Tracking the delivery on their site is useless, none of my purchases (about 10) have arrived as expected. Some took as long as a month of 2. ZZZZZZ.

HipVan has expanded to include more range and depth, appealing to the middle income designer crowd. I do like most of the things and don't mind paying more for quality. My first package arrived successfully and on time so I tried it for a second time. I was sorely disappointed. I didn't hear a peep from them until it is pass the delivery date and was forced to email them about it. Their customer service wasn't exactly friendly, not even an apology and asked me whether I still wanted it. Apparently it was out of stock and new stock will take more time. I really could have used this information when I made the purchase. The feeling I get is that they forgot about it totally. When I ask for a refund, the transaction went smoothly within a day.

Reebonz is a discounted brand name retailer focusing on luxury products. All my purchases have gone smoothly, delivered within a day or 2 as promised and it comes in a gift box, nicely tied with a ribbon without additional charge. Another plus is that it has a large preloved section of those who want a touch of luxury but can't afford the full price just yet.

Verdict

Singsale do carry some brands that are unavailable on any of the sites so I will shop with them only for essentials that are not seen as a present from me to me. As for HipVan, i have lost faith in them. At full retail price, I expect better customer service. The name Reebonz conjure up so many bothersome images, mostly related to the heyday of Sonia Rykiel and Ah Lians ((a pejorative term indicative of an uneducated loudmouth female with no class) that I didn't bother visiting their store initially. Now, I am a believer. They have reasonable prices, comparative with buying at luxury outlets in Europe or the US.

Delivery Time & Shipping Charges

Store Name
Shipping Charges
Shipping Schedule
Reebonz
Free international shipping
3 business days
Singsale
$8 flat rate per event
Up to 28 days
Qoo10
Depends on seller
Depends on seller
Groupon
Depends on seller
Depends on seller
HipVan
Free local shipping above $75
18-21 days

Other Great Buys

Check out the holy grail of make up and skincare review HERE.

© 2015 Min

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