When it comes to making purchases online, there are a number of ways that you can save yourself some of your hard earned money. If you follow this guide, then you should never feel like you paid too much for something ever again.
There are a lot of excellent comparison websites that will help you find the online store with the best price for whatever it is you want to buy. You can use a site like Idealo to search for products and use it to help you find the best price. You can also set an alert so that you get an email when a product drops to a specific price.
There are also comparison sites for car insurance and utilities as well that can help you get the best price for your specific situation. Before you decide to buy anything, you should run the product through a comparison site and see if it is cheaper elsewhere. Even if you were on the cheapest places to begin with you will be safe in the knowledge that you are getting it as cheap as possible. You will likely need to use a different comparison site for different types of products, so it is worth having a few saved to your browser’s favorites.
A lot of sites have some kind loyalty scheme. If you continue to purchase products through them then you will steadily earn points which can then be redeemed for money off your next purchase. A good thing to do can be to save these points throughout the year and then use them on something expensive all at once. This way it can feel like you got that product essentially for free. This is because you were going to make those other purchases anyway and the loyalty points are just a bonus.
You should be aware that you shouldn’t buy from somewhere just because they have a loyalty scheme and it is still worth shopping around for the best deal. However, places like Nectar are on a lot of different retailers both physical and digital so you might as well take advantage of their rewards with each purchase. This can give you something for nothing and a lot of places use them if you sign up and create a login.
When you are looking to buy something, it is almost always worth checking to see if it is available second hand. A lot of the time a second hand version is nearly as good as buying it new and it will cost you a lot less, too. You can use a site like eBay to search for second hand products and you can get some bargains through their buy it now listings or taking part in an auction. There are new listings every day, so if you don’t find what you are after you should check back in a few days. There are other options for buying second hand goods, such as Craigslist and Facebook but neither of these offer the same levels of buyer protection as eBay. Ebay is set up so that if you aren’t happy with the quality of an item or it arrives faulty or damaged then you are entitled to a full refund. Things might a little more expensive on eBay because it charges sellers a small fee, but it is worth for this added protection.
There are a number of ways that you can get a discount when making a purchase. The website itself might be running a promotion that allows you access to a specific discount or you might be able to find a discount code through a third party website. For example, you could take up to 30% discounts at EasyJet and this might not appear on any travel websites but instead sites that specialize in gathering discounts. These sites will provide you with the discount and transfer you to the site where you can use them. There are several and they might not all have the same discounts, so checking a few is always worth the extra few minutes.
Before you commit to a purchase you should check to make sure there aren’t any discounts that you can take advantage of. Supermarkets often have new customer discounts when making an online shop, so it might worth using a different one to usual so that you can take advantage of this special offer. Even a small discount on every purchase can add up to something much larger.
Coupons are like discounts, but they aren’t specific to ‘save x%’. Instead, they can mean buy one get one free offers or other things of that ilk. They often appear on the same sites of discount codes, but they might not.
Purchases through certain websites can mean that when your package arrives it comes with a coupon for money off your next purchase or partnered sites. These coupons are worth using as they can mean you get a large discount on something and, especially the ones that come with your package, don’t usually appear on other sites so they can be more exclusive or offer better deals. Coupons appear for real world shops as well and work in the same way both on and offline.
Cashback sites allow you to get a certain percentage of your purchase back. This effectively works like a delayed discount as it can take weeks or months for the cashback to arrive in your account. However, they are well worth taking advantage of. This is because you were going to make that purchase anyway, so you might as well get some cashback from it.
Cashback sites make their money through referrals to the sites that they have listed and places like TopCashBack allow you to withdraw your money in many different ways. You can get the money directly into your bank account or PayPal account, or you can get it in the form of a gift card or voucher for a specific website. The benefit of getting your money this way is that they will often give you a bonus percentage on top of your current cashback earnings meaning you have even more to spend.
Cashback can also work directly through your bank account as many current accounts offer cashback on certain purchases and bills. This means that you can again make some cash back on everyday purchases, but you don’t need to go through a cashback website. Another benefit of accounts like this is that cashback sites can’t give you cashback on recurring purchases such as your electricity bill whereas these specific bank accounts can. If you don’t currently take advantage of cashback, then you should sign up to a site that operates in your country and start to make a cashback on all of your purchases.
Sometimes the best way to save money on online purchases is not to buy anything. There is a fallacy that online purchases are always cheaper than physical store purchases. While this is often the case, it doesn’t always apply. If you aren’t happy with a price, then you should not go through with the purchase.
Additionally, waiting a few days or a week can help you to consider the purchase further and help you decide if you really need it or not. There are times when waiting and not buying is the best thing to do. This is especially the case if you are close to seasonal sales such as Black Friday or the January sales, as whatever it is you want to buy will probably be on sale before too long.
*This is a collaborative post