Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Getting the Best Deal Shopping Online


Getting the Best Deal Shopping Online

A little extra effort can result in amazing savings when shopping online. For many purchases, comparing prices from site to site can help one find the best overall deal. The additional effort to locate an online coupon code can turn a deal into a steal. I’ve never found an online coupon code for Amazon.com, Zappos.com or Nordtrom.com – but most online retailers do offer coupons for free shipping or an occasional discount.  It is also critical to take into consideration shipping costs and sales tax before completing a purchase.

It does take time and patience to find a bargain; but persistence and creativity can often rule the day.  Sometimes the same item will vary wildly in price from one site to another.  For example, if I find a shoe or boot I like, I will check Zappos.com, Shoebuy.com, Shoemall.com Nordstrom, Amazon.com, shoes.com,  6pm.com, onlineshoes.com, or any other site that pops up when I Google the brand and style. Most of these retailers also encourage customers to post feedback on fit, comfort, value and quality.  If there is no feedback I will have to take a chance, wait till there is feedback, or order only from a site that allows free returns.

Then, do a Google search for the retailer you are using for any potential coupon codes, i.e. – “coupon codes for shoes.com”.  The result may bring up pages and pages of coupon compiling sites. Some will show useless coupons. Some will say there are no current coupons. Some will show expired coupons only. Some sites will have several that may or may not apply. But it is worth checking several sites. I’ve found the elusive 50% off coupon on my 11th page! Even if you have a coupon code from a catalog, it often pays to go through this step because retailers will often send different customers or potential customers different offers. Why? If you are already a regular customer they don’t have to lure you to shop. If you aren’t a regular customer – they want to reel you in.  And while some coupons will say “one per person” – many online retailers don’t keep track of anything but the expiration dates.

And of course – there is always eBay! Look for the sellers with high positive feedback. The optimum score is, of course, 100%.  Read the feedback or send an inquiry to the seller if you have a question. And always use PayPal to pay.  I’ve gone through the dispute process once when some plants I bought arrived DOA and PayPal refunded the entire purchase price. Todd & I even bought one of our cars on eBay. My favorite source for top quality reproduction Victorian jewelry is an eBay seller in Tel Aviv! 

So if you’ve hesitated to shop online until now, try it! Amazon.com is the gold standard; but there are countless sites offering deals that no brick and mortar store can because of the overhead.

And ALWAYS look for a coupon code. At least get the free shipping!
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