Most of us want to know how to save money – but we don't want "cheap" stuff. So how do we accomplish both goals? Today's guest author has some great thoughts on that very subject.
The Internet has changed the way most people shop. Millions of transactions take place online each and every day. And, it’s no wonder, because the Internet has become the place to find the best bargains. Virtual stores don’t have the massive overheads of brick and mortar stores and they can pass those savings onto you. You are also no longer limited to items stocked by local retailers, you can choose from a vast array of merchandise from all over the globe. And best of all, you can shop from the comfort of your home, anytime of the night or day and your purchases are delivered right to your door. The secret to finding the best deals online is simply a matter of knowing where to look. Check out these resources.
Price Comparison Sites
These sites use a specialized search engine known as a shop-bot (shopping robot) to find the best prices. You simply enter a specific product and the shop-bot will give you a list of where it is available and at what price it is being offered. To get the best results, check the item out on two or more comparison sites, as the list of vendors will vary from site to site. Kelkoo and Pricerunner are two of the best. If you use Google Chrome, Firefox, or Internet Explorer to browse the internet, you can download a free application called the Invisible Hand that will alert you if something you are shopping for is available elsewhere at a lower price.
Online coupons or vouchers are actually just a code that you type in when purchasing an item. You can save a great deal of money using these codes when buying big ticket items like appliances. The best coupon sites have several hundreds of offers to choose from, sorted according to product type and updated regularly. Check out sites like Retail Me Not.
One Deal a Day Sites
You can find great prices on popular brand names on these fun sites. They offer one fantastic deal a day, so it’s a good idea to check them out every day and you might just find something you’ve been looking for. You have to act fast, as featured items and discounts are only available that day. One of the most popular is Woot. You may also want to check out Amazon’s Goldbox Page for some truly amazing deals.
Wherever you choose to shop, the golden rules for getting the best possible deals are: buy out of season, never pay exorbitant shipping rates, and be patient. You can get free samples and deep discounts on everything from electronics, appliances, clothing, outdoor furniture, yard care equipment and much more if you purchase it at the end of the season or just as the new models are coming out. If you need a new lawnmower, buy it in the fall for a fraction of what you would have paid in the spring.
When buying online, always calculate the overall price including shipping before making a decision to buy. Some e-commerce sites inflate their shipping charges while offering discounts on their merchandise. Look for reliable sites with the best shipping rates. Many sites offer free shipping if your order is over a certain amount.
And finally, be patient. If you are looking for a particular item, wait for it to go on sale. If you do regular searches, sooner or later you’ll find a good deal. And be prepared to act quickly, as the best bargains often disappear quickly.