Shopping online is a great alternative to trips to the nearest mall. No wonder that millions of people prefer buying goods over the Internet. Online shopping has a lot of advantages over conventional stores. It allows customers to make purchases any time of the day in the comfort of their own house. In addition, you can find goods that are not available in your local shops. But the biggest advantage is the fact that you have a chance to save pretty good money while using online store. In this article, we will tell you how to do so.
1. Use search engines and price comparison services
When it comes to shopping online, there is one basic rule: most likely the desired product will be available in several stores. In order to find the website where the product you are interested in is sold for the lowest price, use search engine (for example Google). Remember, you have to be as specific as possible to find exactly what you need.
If you don’t want to spend time reviewing each store, use one of the comparison shopping engines. This is a platform with collects data and price offers from various stores and allows customers to find the best price. The user does not have to google desired product anymore, as the platform basically does it for him. The most popular comparison shopping engines are Google Shopping, Nextag, Shopping.com and Shopzilla.
The only possible disadvantage of comparison shopping engines is the fact that the price might not always be relevant. In some cases, the stores have special offers only with certain conditions. For example, the product will be sold for a lower price only if bought as a set with something else.
Price comparison on Nextag
2. Search for discount coupons
Once you have decided on an online store which sells the product you need, visit the catalog of coupons and discounts. Look for a discount code for a particular store by using search engines. You might not know, but promotional codes actually exist for a wide range of online shops and can be applied for a range of goods. This is a great chance to save money when making online purchases. There are different types of promo codes and they are updated from time to time. With a help of a promo code, you can get a certain discount, free shipping or receive an additional gift.
Discount coupons are very easy to use. When you find the code, copy it and go to the seller’s page. When making a purchase, you will see a special field where you will be able to paste the code. Make sure to copy the code exactly as you see it since it can be sensitive to capitalization. Also, note that coupon codes have an expiration date, after which it can no longer be used.
3. Pay attention to the terms of delivery
When you visit an online store you like, find the section which describes the terms of delivery and calculates its cost. Sometimes the shipping cost may be very high and ordering goods from this store is just not reasonable.
On the other hand, some online stores offer free shipping on orders over a certain amount. In this case, you can save money by combining several orders into one. If there is no free delivery option, ask your friends or family members who also want to buy something, to divide the cost of shipping.
Understand your delivery options
4. Sign up for a newsletter
Sign up for an e-newsletter from your favorite stores, as it often contains information about upcoming sales, discounts and special offers. As a bonus, such mailings may include exclusive promo codes, which are available only to subscribers. Most websites with coupon catalogs also offer e-mail subscription, which allows receiving notifications about new discounts.
Subscribe to a newsletter
5. Be flexible with payment methods
Buyers can save extra money when choosing the method of payment. Some banks return a part of funds you’ve spent on a special bonus account if you use their credit card to make an online purchase. Online stores also have a similar option. Shops may return a certain percentage of the money spent and make it available for future purchases on their website. In addition, when carrying special promotions, online stores may offer discounts on orders paid with, for example, Master Card.
Also, look for bonus programs and cash back services which cooperate with a variety of online stores. These services allow customers earn bonus points which can be exchanged for various gifts or even received on a credit card.
Use different payment methods
6. Try shopping clubs
Shopping clubs are websites that offer goods with discounts or temporary special offers from different brands. Such service is similar to coupon sales with the difference that shopping clubs do not redirect customers to another online store. These websites buy goods from a brand and resell them to the client.
Shopping clubs often offer discounts at 70% and in some cases even at 90%. Plus, you can find great products from various brands. The only downside is that many companies sell old goods through the shopping clubs. You might not find many available sizes and items sell out pretty fast.
7. Visit an online marketplace
The online marketplace is a platform which gathers different sellers where each has its own prices, quality and delivery conditions. Marketplace provides companies with technical opportunities to sell their products online. This allows producers to save money on creating their own online store and its promotion, which enables to keep the price lower. At the same time, buyers receive a large selection of goods all at the same place and cheaper cost. One of the biggest online marketplaces is AliExpress which attracts buyers with its customer service, return policy and purchase protection.
8. Join with others
In general, joint purchases are a small wholesale order. Several buyers join together and order their goods as one, which allows them to receive a discount. Often, the cost of delivery is divided equally among all participants or proportionally to the amount of the order. You can ask your friends to join or find partners on special forums and websites.
As for a possible disadvantage of this method, sometimes a discount is given for a wholesale purchase of the same item. In this case, it might be hard to find buyers and purchase the whole batch.