Everyone loves shopping, but many people don’t know how to get products at the cheapest rates. But with the right advice, one could learn how to shop at cost-effective prices with minimal effort by following the right shopping methods. With Decoder, online shopping is made easy and practical. There is always a good option to save money while you are shopping online as online shopping sites are constantly offering different sales and discounts through which you can save up a good amount of money.
Here’s are some expert-approved tips and tricks for saving money while shopping online:
- Compare Prices
- Seek Out Discounts, Sales and Promos
- Use Coupons
- Read Reviews
- Consider Subscriptions
- Use Software Hacks
- Plan Ahead
Not all products are created equal, and that same principle applies when it comes to pricing.
Shoaib Mughal, founder of Marketix, says that online shopping can be addictive if you don’t know how to limit yourself. However, there are ways you can save money even while shopping online. “First is to compare prices from one online shop to another. It will give you an idea who has a better offer.”
According to Micheal Barr, Chief Operating Officer at Teleleaf, “You shouldn’t just use the first website you come across. Take the time to compare prices between different sites. You might be amazed by how much money you can save by conducting some research.”
Seek Out Discounts, Sales and Promos
Daniel W. Cook, the Head of Business Development at Mullen & Mullen, suggests the following steps, “When you’re trying to save money while shopping online, it’s important to keep a few things in mind. One is to remember that shipping fees are often included in the cost of products. So, looking for free shipping deals will make you save big, especially if you always shop online.
“Ankit Bhardwaj, Owner VPNHelpers recommends to shop round for discounted deals online! Some retailers offer discounts on certain items during certain times of year or only charge higher prices during holidays (like Black Friday). You should be able to find discounts on products that are already discounted at other stores—just look around before making a purchase,” he adds.
“As much as possible, shop on sites that offer free shipping. This is important because it’s much easier to set up an account and get information about the product if you don’t have to pay a fee,” says Brian Hong, owner, and CEO of Infintech Designs.
Anton Giuroiu, co-founder of Homesthetics, recommends foreseeing any discounts or sales down the road. “Foresee any discount and sale that you can grab. Is it nearing payday? Is it your birthday? Have you been with that shopping platform for more than a year? Is it a holiday? If you’ve said yes to any of these, then there’s a spiking probability that you save money when you spend due to sales and discounts. On special commemorations, discounts rain over social media. Do your research and don’t hesitate to virtually grab any coupon that you can get.”
Chris M. Walker, CEO Superstar SEO has an interesting suggestion: “Fill out the Shopping Cart ahead of time. Make sure you pre-load your basket with everything you like if you’re trying to save money on all the products you wish to acquire from an online shopping platform. It enables you to get them right away while they are on sale, preventing you from losing out on a chance to save money.”
Sam Browne, the CEO of HARO SEO, recommends taking advantage of credit card cashback programs. “Many cards offer cash back on online purchases, so if you use one of these cards for your online shopping, you can earn some money back on your purchase. If your supplier offers any discounts or cashback schemes, inquire about them. Every online transaction I make with my bank card can receive up to 5% cashback.”
However, Hong has a word of caution when it comes to sales. “When an item is on sale, it does not mean that you should purchase it. Be wise in spending your money and avoid impulse shopping,” he says.
Corey Morgan, Marketing Director at Kind Home Painting, recommends the use of coupons. “You’ll want to save coupon codes the next time you get them because it is one of the techniques to save money when you shop online. Coupons can give you a variety of discounts, including free delivery, friends or family discounts, and quantity discounts—and they are also given to customers as loyalty perks. Another benefit you can get from coupons is that most of the codes (for digital purchases) can be used multiple times to a limit. Unlike stackable coupons, you have to collect them for every purchase you make at a physical store which costs more time for gas and commuting money, and effort.”
Gabriel Krikunez, Gklaw says, “Many websites offer discounts if you enter a code at checkout. Shipping costs can add up, so be sure to check them before you complete your purchase. Many sites offer free shipping if you spend a certain amount of money.”
“There are several discount codes, also known as promo codes, floating around the internet, which is one of the most alluring advantages of purchasing online. There are many different coupons for every merchant for your purchases and services, like free shipping and discounted delivery prices. Additionally, you may buy a product for approximately 50% less if you combine discount gift cards and promo codes,” Jeffrey Reisman, jeffreismanlaw says.
“The small contributions that each coupon makes to your budget will accumulate over time, allowing you to save more money,” Leo Coleman, the Editor-in-Chief at Gambling ‘N Go, says. Hong agrees, saying. “Some coupons offer 5% off on your total amount or offer 50 % off whenever you reach a specific amount.”
Brian Hong, owner and CEO of Big Easy Roofing, considers this as one of the most important steps. “Read reviews from other customers before making a purchase, so you can see what other people thought about the product and decide whether or not it’s worth buying anyway,” he says.
Julia Tanaka owner of safe baby monitor says, “Always reading the reviews of products will save money because it gives you an honest opinion about the quality of the product. Reviews can help you better understand the features and benefits of a particular product. This can help you compare similar products and make a more informed decision about which one is right for you. Reviews can also give you an idea of potential product problems before purchasing. It can save you from buying something that turns out to be defective or not as described.”
Kshitij Nigam, Chief Marketing Officer of Cheef Botanicals, recommends considering purchasing subscriptions.
“While “purchasing” sounds the opposite of what we’re aiming for, having subscriptions can help save up for future expenses. This is often where you get codes to use for every purchase and give you a client loyalty discount when you shop for affiliate companies or stores. You can also get a variety of perks from subscriptions— from birthday discounts, to accumulating points to use, and get cash-back opportunities. Companies will only ask for your maintenance pay monthly or yearly, and this is only 10 to 20 percent of your expense compared to a year’s worth of purchases.”
Speaking of subscriptions, we cannot help but link it to another time-tested money-saving hack – buying in bulk. “Buying in bulk can save you money. If you know you’ll need a specific item regularly, it may be worth buying a larger quantity at once,” says Barr.
Use Software Hacks
You can’t just rely on mindset and willpower alone to keep you from overspending online. Technology allows us to be so much better than that, as these suggestions show.
Walker recommends opening online shops in incognito mode or through a private window. According to him, it “…prevents retailers from using cookies to track your browsing behavior. This means that you won’t see targeted ads for the items you’ve been looking at, which can tempt you to make an impulse purchase. Shopping in incognito mode can help you avoid price hikes that some retailers use based on your location or browsing history. Many cash-back and rewards programs exclude purchases made in incognito mode, so shopping in this way ensures that you won’t miss out on any potential savings.”
Bob Scott, selling land for cash recommends SellLand.com. “This gives you instant access to coupons and promo codes from over 4,000 online retailers. You can save money on your online shopping by simply clicking a button. Some extension tabs automatically apply coupons and promo codes at checkout so that you can get the best deal possible on your purchase. In addition, the Chrome Extension Tabs provide a safe and convenient way to compare prices and products before making a purchase.”
Louis John, co-founder of What’s Good Online, recommends looking at your finances first before going on an online shopping spree. “It’s imperative to list down your upcoming expenses so that you can budget properly and know the spare money that you can spend. Oftentimes, the root cause of overspending when shopping online is the thinking that you have plentiful money in your pocket—when truthfully, you haven’t allotted money for personal bills yet. In creating a budget plan, write down your fixed expenses—like insurance if any, food, monthly dues, leisure, savings, and other personal bills—then subtract them from your net income and earnings. This way, you will know exactly how much you can spend on shopping, which then diminishes impulsive shopping.”
Coleman recommends nipping impulse buying on the bud by planning your shopping. “Saving money on everyday purchases is a major part of a well-planned budget. How do you save money while shopping online? Make an online shopping list to have a clear idea of what you want to buy before shopping online. This will allow you to focus on the things that you really need and are worth it.”
Set a budget for online shopping to control your expenses and to make sure that you’re spending money on something really worth it. Having a plan in place will help you avoid impulsive buying,” he adds.
Loran Marmes, owner of Medicare Solutions Team, recommends setting clear financial goals and using them as a guide when spending money on online purchases.
“When you’re trying to put money away for future plans, every dollar counts. With a little effort, you can build life-long habits for a healthier online shopping attitude. First, set goals for your savings and online shopping. This will motivate you to stick to your budget and purchase things that you really need. Leave items in your shopping cart, take time to check and think before making a purchase. Make sure to spend money on something that you can really use. Some retailers will increase the price of a product right before a big sale. It is helpful to compare and keep track of the prices to check if you’re scoring a good deal.”
Deepanshu Bedi, the co-founder of Exhale Well, emphasizes the need for scheduling expenses. “While it’s nice to reward ourselves with purchases online any time we have money, it remains best to save up and schedule purchases to get the best deals. We save most when we take advantage of pay-day and holiday sales—where companies offer discounts and promos that enable for more purchases,” he says.
When it comes to saving money, nothing beats the oldest trick in the book – not spending at all (if you can help it). As Hong aptly put it, “The best way to save money is to not spend it. Think again and again why you need to buy this product, how long you will use it, and if you really need it at all.”
But if keeping your hands away from the “Add to Cart” button is hard, Masha Mahdavi, co-founder of SEM Dynamics, has a radical but effective solution – lock a portion of your money somewhere you can’t reach or give it to someone else to avoid overspending.
“Be extensive in preparing a specific budget and explicitly write down your set expenditures when creating one. Incorporate expenses for insurance, meals, monthly dues, recreation, savings, and other personal obligations, and then deduct these from your net income and earnings. It’s just as imperative to create a spending strategy. List your planned costs so that you may properly budget and know how much money you have left over before going on buying sprees. Invest your money in different things—like piggy banks, wallets, bank accounts, and insurance, so that you have emergency money in case you really want to purchase something while shopping. There’s no harm in shopping online, but they have to be regulated; otherwise, they will tear your pockets apart,” she adds.
These tips show us that we don’t have to feel bad whenever we feel like going on a quick shopping spree online. You just have to follow best practices that have been proven again and again to help shoppers save money. Combine these expert tips with astute financial planning and shopper’s guilt will be a thing of the past for you!