Shopping online is super fun and super addictive. If you like to spend a lot of time shopping online, make sure you are taking advantage of all the ways online shopping can actually save you money. We have all heard of Cyber Monday and Amazon Prime Day but you can actually save money throughout the rest of the year as well. Here are three ways to make sure you spend the least amount of money the next time you shop online.
Compare, Compare, Compare
The beauty of the internet is that there are so many options at the tips of our fingers. When you are in a store, you physically have to visit other stores to comparison shop. Not so with the internet. It’s easy to jump from one website to another and compare prices.
One tip to help you control your spending is to start out with a specific list that you won’t deviate from and spend more than you planned. One simple way to compare prices is to use one of the online comparison tools like bizrate.com. This is simpler than going from website to website as the comparison site will list a bunch of stores that carry that item and list all their prices so you compare them all in one place.
If you happen to be in the store, it’s not a bad idea to take a second and compare the price you are physically seeing with the online price. Sometimes you will get a better deal in the store but you won’t know unless you do a little quick comparison.
Another great search tool to use online is to search for coupon codes. Sometimes you’ll get an added bonus of earning cash back. RetailMeNot.com is a great source for coupon codes plus they allow other shoppers to give feedback on those coupon codes so you’ll know right away which coupons work the best. Ebates.com and ShopAtHome.com will give you coupon codes plus cash back if you shop on their site. You will receive a percentage of your purchase total back in a cash reward that you can then use to shop some more. Don’t forget our own Coupon Central where you can get coupons for your favorite products and discount codes from hundreds of stores!
Some retailers also let you stack your coupons to maximize your savings. Stacking coupons means using more than one at the time of purchase. The trick is to enter the codes the right way to make sure you get the best deal. For example, you would enter a percent off code first and then a code for a specific dollar amount off. By following that rule, you could get say 20% off your purchase than another $10 off that amount that is left.
Referrals and Rewards
Referral sites are another way to make money while shopping. Once you get some friends to sign up you receive referral credits to buy things or stretch your budget even farther. It also helps to join the reward programs of the stores you frequent a lot. Every time you shop, make sure to enter your loyalty numbers to get special deals and even cash back. Some retailers will also send you frequent emails to let you know when sales are happening so you are always aware who has the best deals going on that day.
The biggest money-saving tip to remember is to stick to your budget. No matter how much you save, it will not matter if you spend more than you intended. Stick to your list and only buy the things on it for the best possible price that you can find.