These days you can purchase just about anything online in just a few clicks. Even better than shopping online and having the product delivered right to your doorstep is doing so while saving and spending less. Here are our top ten shopping hacks to save you money online.
1. Compare prices
To get the best product at the best price, you might have to do some homework. This means visiting and comparing products on different websites until you find one that offers the best balance between price and quality. If this seems like too much work, price comparison sites such as Google Shopping or Ideolo can perform this service for you.
2. Use price tracking websites
Another shopping hack to save money online is using price tracking sites such as CamelCamelCamel. With CamelCamelCamel, for example, you can see the prices that your chosen product has been sold at on Amazon over the past year. You can also use the site to set up email notifications should the product’s price drop.
3. Live chat for discounts
If an online store has a live chat bot on its site, don’t be too quick to dismiss it. This can be a perfect avenue to ask for discounts on certain items. You might encounter an understanding online assistant who is willing to give you extra perks not listed on the site if you do a little haggling.
4. Sign up for email newsletters
A lot of online retailers offer discount codes as well as other offers if you sign up for their email newsletter. This can be a major hack for saving money when shopping online. An added advantage of signing up for online retailers’ newsletters is that you will be alerted about upcoming promotions and sales.
However, it might be a good idea to set up a special shopping email for this purpose so that your regular inbox does not get bombarded or clogged with promotional emails.
5. Leave items in your cart
This may sound odd but putting products in your cart and leaving them there can prove to be a great shopping hack to save money you online. Sometimes, brands reach out to you with a personalised discount or offer as a way of encouraging you to compete the purchase.
For this to work, however, you need to make sure that you are signed into the site or registered to the brand through a legitimate and active email.
6. Follow brands on social media
These days, many online retail brands are on social media. Sometimes, they release information about special offers and promotions to their followers on social media first before they do it elsewhere. By following your favourite brands on social media you can receive alerts about discounts and offers quickly and take advantage before the deals expire.
However, ensure that the account you are following is the brand’s official verified account. Sadly, there are plenty of fake accounts out there, created by impostors as click bait traps or by fraudsters who just want to access your personal information and perhaps use it for something like identity theft.
7. Shop on the right days
Knowing when to shop can be as important as knowing where. Studies show that the best time to do online shopping for UK customers is Tuesday to Thursday. Online retailers roll out some of their best deals on these days, so waiting to do your shopping then can be a great money saving hack.
8. Plan big purchases around holidays
If you do not need your chosen product urgently, it can be worth waiting for an upcoming bank holiday to buy it, as many retailers mark down their products or offer discounts and sales during holidays. It’s possible to score a crazy deal if you wait for the ideal time to buy.
9. Shop using ‘incognito’ mode
To circumvent this, do your online shopping in ‘incognito’ mode on your browser. Alternatively, clear your cache and cookies every time you search for an item online.
10. Note the free shipping threshold
Some online retailers will offer free shipping if you buy items above a certain threshold. If you realise that you are just a few quid away from this free shipping threshold, spending a little more on products might actually end up saving you money in total costs.
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