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Bargaining is Not Dead - Or Is It?

Updated on December 7, 2015

Bargaining at a local store is now history. There were times when people used to visit local shops searching for the products that they liked the most and then bargaining with the shopkeeper for hours in order to grab them. Now, that all has changed. First, the style of shopping has changed. Second, people do not have the time anymore to bargain.

Does it mean that bargaining has died?

Answering them requires explanation. First, bargaining has not died, similar to our shopping taste and pattern, the bargain structure has changed. However, it can be said that bargaining has evolve – a better term.

Around 70 percent of Americans now buy products online. Instead of jumping shops, they have apps installed of ecommerce stores. They just select apps and order anything they like. You would be asking, what is the bargain here? They never communicated with the seller, nor negotiated anything and they just bought what was on plate…


Online markets act in the similar ways as to brick and mortar models. The online markets, especially the ones where user can bid and get the product for the price he wants, are the top bargain markets these days.

EBay, Flippa, Upwork and many others are the new emerging bargain markets where people not only sell products but skills and services as well.

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Six ways to bargain in digital age

There are certain ways to bargain in the digital age.

1. Using Price Comparison websites

Price comparison engines are there in the digital world since 2000. They are some clever bots that fetch price lists from all leading online stores in order to provide you with price lists of stores that sell the products at the lowest prices in the market.

However, users do not directly bargain here, but these are the new form of bargains. The Price comparison websites not only provide a list of prices in descending order but also allow the users to avail discounts from the online shopping stores.

2. Searching for discounts and Coupons

Similar to price comparison websites, discounts and coupon websites are popular as well. These websites provide daily deals, coupons of online stores to coupons who can then use them during a limited period to buy from those online stores.

This again is a form of bargain. Here, instead of users directly engaging in negotiations with the shopkeepers, they are provided with discounts and coupons directly approved by the latter.

3. Using expired coupons as bargains

Now this is the closest you can get to a bargain in the online world. In most cases, the coupons you get from coupon websites are often expired. Therefore, what users actually do is to call the eCommerce stores and request them to renew the coupon or provide them with a similar deal. This way they can avail the coupon even after it has expired.

4. Try coupon stacking

A clever tip for bargain hunters is to stack coupons. For example, if you got a 15% discount coupon and another 12$ less coupon. Both these can be used on one single product to decrease its cost. This can help save even more!

5. Cashback websites

Cashback websites are similar to both the price comparison websites and coupon stacking websites. Instead of providing these, the cash back websites act as an intermediary for the buyers. Buyers make accounts on this website and when they buy through them, they get points. These points can later be redeemed for gift cards or amount, whatever is the policy of the cashback websites.

Not totally a bargain, but is similar to what the end motive of a bargain is!

6. Go for refurbished ones

Finally, there are online stores that sell refurbished items. These refurbished items are the ones where users can make the most of bargains. The refurbished items are more prone to price deviation and that is what can go in favor of users.

The items available in refurbished category have some faults – which were removed and that is a reason they are priced low.

While wrapping it all up, it can be said that bargaining culture has changed. However, that does not mean the core purpose of bargaining for better deals has ended. Instead, it has shifted to a better medium!

© 2015 Ali Nazar Rathore


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