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Save Money by Shopping Online

Updated on February 22, 2008

We all love to find great deals while shopping.

You can find deals in a number of different ways, like by reading through advertisements, clipping coupons, or even driving from store to compare the prices before deciding to buy anything. But doing all the things I just listed can be really time consuming. Sometimes, you can do all of that work and still end up not finding any good deals.

A great way to make your dollar go further, without a lot of hassle, is to shop online.

Shopping online is becoming more and more a part of daily life. In fact, I don’t know anyone who has never bought anything online (except, maybe my grandparents, but I’m not even sure about that). For some products, shopping the traditional way is already becoming obsolete. If you care more about buying a product than you do about how it is packaged, you no longer need to browse through actual stores—you can simply buy what you want online. For example, shopping for music at a record store is pretty much outdated. The percentage of people who go out to buy music is declining because buying it online is more convenient. Plus, the selection is greater, and you pay only 99¢ or less per song. Instead of going out to buy a CD, you can purchase songs from home.

Popular Online Stores

- amazon.com: You can buy anything on amazon.com, from books to gadgets to baking pans.

- overstock.com: This is a department store with mostly high end items.

- newegg.com: An online site to purchase electronic products.

- itunes.com: You can buy and download music from this site.

Keep Your Computer Protected While Shopping Online

Looking at the overall picture, online shopping saves you time and money.

If you are looking for great deals on consumer good products, the internet and online stores win. Online prices tend to be cheaper. Doing business solely over the internet allows online retailers to significantly cut their costs. In the end, this benefits the consumers because they pay less for the products they want.

You might think that while you might find cheaper prices online, it isn’t worth it because you have to pay for shipping, and then wait for the item to arrive. This is partially true. But, you should know that many online stores offer free shipping if you spend a set amount on an order. If you shop online a lot, you can sign up for programs like Amazon.com’s Amazon Prime. This is a service that gives you free 2-day shipping without a minimum order on almost a million different items sold on their site.

When you shop for content based goods, like music, movies, and video games, you don’t even have to wait for the delivery of the items. You can simply download them from the internet directly onto your computer. This means that you can enjoy your purchases right after the transaction: instant gratification. As well, some companies ship quickly. I order office supplies for work through Office Depot, and usually receive our order the next morning.

Saving Money Online

If you want to save money while shop online, remember that there is a great price variation between online retailers. Some stores my charge you less than the others. In fact, some stores offer prices that may be even higher than those offered by traditional merchants. If you want to find good deals online, you will need to shop around just like you do in real life. However, shopping around online takes a fraction of the time it would take you in real life.

There are two ways to finding savings online.

You can go from website to website, searching for whatever the product you want to buy, to compare prices. The problem with this approach is that there are thousands of online stores. You may find a great deal at an online store, but be hesitant to buy from them if you don’t know anything about the site or their reputation.

The best way to shop around online is by using a shopping bot. Shopping bots are websites that search for the best deals on products you want to buy. You simply type in what you are looking for, and in a fraction of a second you can see what the prices are in many different online stores. On top of looking for the best deals, shopping bots can also provide you with store ratings and customer reviews of the product. You don’t get any of that in a traditional department store.

Online price comparison websites I use most often:

- pricegrabber.com

- mysimon.com

- pricescan.com

- shopping.com

Before you make an online purchase, check out the prices offered at other online stores, and make sure you verify the reliability of the store. By following these simple guidelines, you will be able to save a lot of money. Have fun shopping!

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