It has never been easier save money online. There are a whole slew of websites dedicated to giving you better deals than you'll find in any retail store. And most websites have a "promo code" box where you can get discounts just for taking the time to look.
A Brief History of Money
Through the 4,500 years we've used money, it has gotten more convenient. Money started out as gold and silver bullions which had to be lugged to the marketplace and melted down to barter. Then around 750 BCE we started using coins; in 1,100 AD the Chineese introduced paper to the currency world and today we use plastic. Purchasing has become more convenient. Now we have the internet, so buying things has become more convenient.
Coupon and Discount Websites
- Currently there are several dozen coupon sites: Coupon Mom, Coupon Sherpa, and RetailMeNot, are the most popular. Additionally, most stores and restaurants have online coupons and deals on their sites. If you Google your favorite brand plus the word "coupon" or "promo code" you may find some great offers; I just googled "Kenmore coupons" and discovered many codes.
- Shipping discounts can also be found: When I was a kid and ran to the store to buy something I'd saved my hard-earned money for, I was always dismayed there was tax on it. Today, I feel the same way about shipping; you think you have the money, then they tack on the cost to get it to you. Look for sites where spending a certain amount will get you free shipping. Amazon.com usually has free shipping for orders over $25. Whenever you're prompted for a shipping code use the same trick you learned about promo codes: simply by searching online you may be able to find the coupon for it.
Daily Deal Newsletters & Social Media
- The coupon sites from above have all kinds of good deals and coupons they send out in newletter format, including deals for free shipping. If you don't already have too much email you might consider signing up. Future promotions are usually published in the newsletters first, so you'll be one of the first to know about these.
- Some retailers will announce deals on social network sites like Facebook and Twitter; however, since there are usually so many people online to take advantage, these promotions will be for a limited time and / or to first responders.
- Follow daily deal sites like Groupon or Living Social. When you sign up for these sites, you'll receive email with coupons and discounts usally for around 50% off for local restaurants or shops as well as for trips and travel. The trick is, with these the you can only get the deals for 24 hours and you pay up front. Then its up to you to use it within the next year.
- Shout about it! Sometimes when you find a good deal and you tell your friends about it through social networking on Twitter, you may get rewarded. Living Social has a program where if three friends buy the deal, you get yours for free.
Do Your Due Diligence
- No matter what you're doing, it's important to always make sure you look before you leap. Look at the return policy, not everyone is as great as Amazon.com - 30 days no matter what. It could be you're out of luck if the item arrives at your house and it isn't exactly what you had in mind, which happens frequently when you're buying online since there's on touchy-feely opportunity as in a brick-and-mortar store.
- Also be careful and don't buy one of these deals unless you're actually going to use it. It is easy to get carried away with the great deal you are getting, but if you weren't going to buy it before, then you're not really personally saving money -- a penny not spent is a penny earned.
How often have you passed up the online promotion box because you had no discount code?