According to recent surveys, online shoppers have replaced the foot-stomping brick-and-mortar shopper as the dominant driving force in the marketplace. This means that it has never been so valuable and necessary to possess a keen knowledge of how to make savings when buying online. While there are a whole host of tricks and tools that will allow dedicated bargain hunters to cut cost-corners here and there, there are a couple of very basic and easy to understand tips that will see even amateur deal hunters make impressive savings with minimum fuss. This guide will give you an overview of the main strategies and tools you can find online to make your money go further.
Tip 1: Use discount codes
Discount codes are the online equivalent of those scraps of paper you used to cut out of magazines and present at the checkout. They take the form of a code made up of numbers and letters that can be entered at the point of purchasing to reduce the cost by either a set amount or a percentage of the cost. You can search online yourself to find discounts for your favourite stores, but it is a good idea to use a discount code site to help you track down what you need. These websites gather together discount codes from a wide variety of vendors so you can browse them all in one place. Discount codes for online marketplaces like Flubit are a great find as they give you discounts on a huge variety of products.
Tip 2: Purchase goods during off-peak times
Of course, this is something on-the-ground bargain hunters have been doing for decades, but with online shopping, it is easier to keep an eye on when a company is trying to off-load out of season stock. Purchase your barbecue during the winter season and see a big reduction compared to summer prices.
Tip 3: Look for discount codes during sales to double your savings
A follow-on to tip number 1, this strategy will see you maximising discounts by combining promotional codes and sales into one drastically reduced final price. The easiest way to sync these two reductions up is to find a deal online and then visit a trusted discount code website to see if they are offering any discount codes for that vendor.
Tip 4: Pick up online purchases in person
If you know a store has a branch nearby, but you still want to get the benefits of online discounts, you can order online and then pick up the item instore yourself. While not every store offers this option, many do. If it isn't immediately apparent whether they do or they don't, you can always email them and find out. You'll be surprised how often they'll be willing to accommodate you. If picking it up instore isn't an option, you can save on shipping by searching for discount codes that specifically target transport costs. As a last resort, look into the minimum spend for free shipping to see if you can actually end up saving more by paying a little more.
Tip 5: Search online for rebates
While a discount code offers you a reduced cost before the point of purchase, rebates are a handy way to make savings after the fact. If you can combine one with the other, you can make dramatic savings all for the extra effort of searching online and applying to the company for the rebate.