If you’re like many shoppers, the words discount, special offer, deal, annual sale and best-rated grab your attention.
You might not be prepared to purchase another pair of shoes in a week, but once you see the shoes have a 50% discount, your mind switches to a shopping mood instantly. Unfortunately, not every product under a special offer is worth buying.
If you want to find the best deals online, follow these tips:
1. Use Coupon Codes
Coupon codes need no introduction. They are the computer-generated words or numbers you enter into a site to get a discount on a specific product. Many shopping sites accept coupon codes.
But here’s the problem: coupon codes work 30% of the time. That’s because these codes expire, or you might find the wrong codes. Also, not every website accepts codes.
For example, many online casinos in the US welcome every new customer with a bonus. But you don’t always need a coupon code to claim your offer. All you need is to compare the best bonuses at a comparison site like Time2play. Then you choose a site and claim its offers.
That said, there’s a formula for maximizing your returns from coupon codes according to the Washington Post. The site recommends that you take time when comparing coupon codes. Also, pay loyalty to sites with the best deals.
2. Beware of Dynamic Pricing
Dynamic pricing is an unfair system that involves hiking prices to people located in certain zip codes, using certain devices or people who’ve been searching for the same products for some time.
Picture this, a hotel in the Bahamas might realize Americans are willing to pay more money than people from Greece. So, they will hike their vacation packages when advertising to people in the US.
As a smart shopper, you could install a VPN and switch your location to Greece. Now, you’ll be able to see all the low prices advertised to Greek people and take advantage of them.
The best VPNs cost money but you can always try out some top-rated free providers. Another trick is to delete your browsing history, caches and cookies. This sends confusion to advertisers who rely on cookies to track your data. With this information deleted, they are forced to show you the best deals.
3. Shop During Major Discounts
Not all shopping discounts are created equal. End of year sales, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Valentine’s and Christmas attract the best deals. Some discounts are also seasonal.
Think of back-to-school deals. If your child needs a new backpack, buy one when school is about to reopen. Likewise, the best time to purchase sports tickets is when a new season is about to start.
In case you’re wondering, there are a few tricks you can use to keep up with promotions. For starters, you can subscribe to the newsletter of your favorite shopping sites.
Alternatively, you can subscribe to a site that specializes in finding amazing shopping deals. Think of Droplist, Honey and Lyst. These browser extensions send you a notification whenever there is a drop in price for specific products.
4. Follow Major Brands on Socials
If you love branded products, then you need to favorite your preferred brands on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat. These companies don’t always talk about their products on socials.
But once in a while, they announce discounts through social media before sending out emails to their subscribers. Some companies also provide print at home promotional codes. And they unveil these codes on social networks.
Besides, learning about new products and following brands on socials can also help you keep up with their social responsibilities and initiatives. This means the charities they are promoting, the projects they are launching and other great things to remind you why you are loyal to them, or why you shouldn’t be.
5. Look at Shipping Terms
A recent study by Amazon.com showed the online retailer makes more money when it offers free shipping. It doesn’t matter if the site raises its prices a little bit. Adding free shipping has been helping them boost sales significantly.
In other words, free shipping is one of those phrases that trigger you to buy goods even when they are not great discounts. With that information, look beyond a company’s shipping policies.
Start by shopping around to find the best deals online. Even if you only buy on Amazon, look around to compare prices of the same products from different sellers. Of course, shipping fees are important. So, don’t ignore them, just ensure that value for your money is your priority.
There’s no point in working hard to save on shopping if you don’t have a budget. You need to have an idea of how much you want to spend and how much you want to save.
Some shopping experts also recommend that you create a budget for the money you plan to spend. Know what you plan to do with your savings before you even get started.
The main benefit of budgeting is to help you maximize your savings. Let’s say you want to spend $1000 on a new DSLR camera. You can shop around for cameras that cost up to $1500 and purchase the one with a discount that accommodates your budget.
7. Sign Up for Loyalty Programs
This goes out to all the brand loyalists out there. Sign up for whatever loyalty programs your favorite brands have, such as cash backs. That means you will get a portion of the money you spend on items monthly.
Perhaps your preferred brand has special discounts for regular customers. In that case, you will save more money than non-loyalists.
There you have it: some of the best ways to save money through online shopping. Create a budget and take your time shopping around. Compare offers and grab coupon codes where possible.
If you love specific brands, show them your love by following them on social media and by subscribing to their loyalty programs. Not only will you learn about discounts ahead of everyone else, but you’ll also qualify for generous deductions.