We all have that friend who always seems to get the best deals while shopping.
Oh, you know the one. You spend $120 on designer jeans, and they seem to find the exact same pair for $50. And their 4kTV is bigger, thinner and smarter – yet you paid the same amount.
What do they know that you don’t?
Well, perhaps they’re shopping online, where you can often find great deals among the highly competitive landscape. And the products will ship to your door, to boot.
If you’re looking to save some serious cash, let’s look at a few ways to score a great deal while online shopping.
Because you’ve got many thousands of stores at your fingertips, be sure to research prices on the web – and it helps when you know exactly what you’re looking for. Plus, there are price comparison sites that can do the work for you, such as pricegrabber.com and redflagdeals.com. If you shop online, be sure to factor in shipping costs. Speaking of research, also read reviews from both critics and customers to avoid buying a dud, on popular sites such as amazon.ca.
App it up
Smartphone and tablet owners have no shortage of great apps to help you save money. For example, eBates.ca gives you cash back on purchases you make online (the percentage varies by retailer), while RetailMeNot offers many thousands of coupons and codes to snag a bargain. Most of these apps have website equivalents, too, in case you prefer to shop using a personal computer instead of a mobile device.
Whether you buy at retail or online, it generally doesn’t pay to buy an extended warranty for your consumer electronics, as they aren’t likely to break down during the extended service contract period. Consumer Reports also warns of extended warranties that have fine-print terms that limit or void your claims. That said, if the extended warranty is very affordable (compared to the overall cost) and can extend the warranty period significantly, perhaps it’s worth the peace of mind.
A version of this article appeared in the March 2018 issue of Zoomer magazine with the headline, “Scoring a Great Deal While Online Shopping,” p. 53.