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How to Find Free Coupon Codes, Promo Codes, and Discounts

Updated on June 15, 2011

The internet is an amazing resource. Shopping online is convenient, and it's surprisingly easy to compare prices. PriceGrabber is an amazing tool for comparing prices, as well.

In my efforts to downsize my credit card bill, I have discovered the miracle of coupon and promotional codes. Many popular sites over special codes that provide a discounted price when they are entered during the checkout process. During checkout, the buyer is frequently able to provide a special code that lowers the cost of their purchase.

What Are Coupon Codes?

Traditional coupons are used in grocery stores to save money on food. Savvy shoppers know that they can combine coupons with the weekly grocery circulars to pay less at the supermarket. Coupons are used for a large variety of items, from soup and cereal to ketchup and diapers.

Coupon codes are the internet's version of coupons. When shopping online, smart shoppers can use these coupon or promotional codes to get discounts on their purchases. In many cases, these codes are a short word, phrase, or even a mixture of letters and numbers. For instance, a code may look like SUMMER11 or PAY15OFF, or 4592X28T.

Finding Coupon Codes, Promo Codes, and Discounts

You can save money with these easy free codes.
You can save money with these easy free codes. | Source

Promo Codes Offer Big Discounts

As an example, consider a buyer who is purchasing items from Office Depot. Office Depot regularly sends promotional materials through the mail (and sometimes via email) that feature the coupon code. When the buyer meets the minimum purchase requirements, they can enter the code and the purchase price will automatically be reduced.

These promotional codes can offer a variety of benefits. Sometimes, you can get 15% off of your purchase; other times you can get free shipping; and other times, you can get a free item. These codes generally have expiration dates.

Do You Use Coupon Codes?

Do you use coupon codes for your online purchases?

See results

How to Find Coupon Codes

A quick internet search will help you find promotional codes that may be available. Do a search on the retailer and the words "coupon code." For best results, conduct an advanced search, so you can choose codes that have been updated within a certain time frame. (A coupon code that expired in 2007 will not help you at all.)

I personally bookmark my favorite sites for coupon codes and promotional codes. My favorite sites are CouponCabin, CouponWinner, and CouponCraze. Each of these sites lets you search for particular stores and lists the coupon codes for each.

How Many Coupons Can I Use?

These codes are treated in much the same way as traditional coupons. Most stores will allow you to only use one coupon per order. But some stores will let you enter additional codes. For example, Victoria's Secret accepts more than one coupon. However, it is very rare that stores will allow you to combine coupons.

How to Find Free Coupon Codes, Promo Codes, and Discounts


What Stores Allow Coupons

Several retailers offer online coupon codes. I've found codes for the following stores, as well as others:

  • 1-800-Flowers
  • Alibris
  • Banana Republic
  • Barnes and Noble
  • The Body Shop
  • Borders
  • Brylane Home
  • Coldwater Creek
  • EBay (This coupon is rare)
  • Home Depot
  • Kmart
  • Kohl's
  • Macy's
  • Old Navy
  • Oriental Trading
  • Sears
  • Sephora
  • Victoria's Secret


How To Enter Coupon Codes

When you visit your favorite coupon code website (CouponCabin, CouponWinner, or Coupon Craze), make sure you jot down the search results and the promotional information. I personally keep this window open while I open a second window to shop. This way, if a code is expired, I can still find another code to use.

Most sites will let you enter the coupon or promotional codes during the checkout process. When you review your purchases during checkout, you should see a box that allows you to enter the coupon code. When you enter the promotional code, you will normally see the coupon price subtracted from your total.

If you do not see a place to enter the code, double check your shopping cart. Sometimes the company accepts the code in the shopping cart.

Did the Discount Code Work?

Always double check your balance BEFORE you pay. Make sure that you have received the discount before you pay for your merchandise. If you are not sure whether the discount was applied, stop your purchase and contact the merchant.

Be careful. Once you pay for your purchases, then it is too late to go back and get the discount.

How to Find Free Coupon Codes, Promo Codes, and Discounts

Careful When Using Discount Codes

I do have one additional note of warning. When you are visiting a site like Coupon Craze, the webmaster will provide links for you to click to easily get to the merchant's website. In many cases, these links will offer additional discounts or sales.

Keep in mind that Coupon Craze (or Coupon Cabin, eBates, Wallet Pop, etc.) does get a commission when you click this link to make a profit. Of course, that is normally not going to be a problem. After all, they are providing a valuable service. However, if you are saving money using Upromise, eBates, or a number of paid-to-shop sites, then you will want to take this coupon code and use it on one of those sites. This will help you to maximize your earning potential. I'll discuss this further in an upcoming link.

Where Can I Find Coupon Codes?

There are many online resources that offer coupon codes. These promotional codes are updated regularly, and will change frequently. I suggest that you open an additional window when making your purchase, since some coupons will expire before you are able to enter them.

Retail Me Not

Coupon Mountain

GoGo Shopper



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    • Liz Goltra profile image

      Liz Goltra 6 years ago

      Thanks for these recommendations!

    • DonnaWallace profile image

      Donna Wallace 7 years ago from North Carolina

      Nicholas, I appreciate the thumbs up. Good luck on saving money with coupons and discount codes!

    • DonnaWallace profile image

      Donna Wallace 7 years ago from North Carolina

      Thank you, couponcharlie. I have saved so much money using coupon codes and promo codes. I recommend this technique to anyone who wants to save money online.

    • couponcharlie profile image

      couponcharlie 7 years ago from New York, NY

      You definitely provide some great information for people on how you can save money. There are tons of different retailers online that accept coupon codes and it's a great way to save money, especially around the holidays when you will be buying a lot.