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6 Essential Tips To Help You Save Money When Shopping Online

6 Essential Tips To Help You Save Money When Shopping Online

Shopping on the Internet can be an excellent opportunity to buy products for better prices. Over the years, e-commerce has grown substantially – even in developing countries. Nowadays, people prefer to make purchases online especially because of the ease associated with it.

Online shopping is certainly convenient, but you can end up paying more than you normally would if you are not careful, especially when you factor in shipping costs. Being knowledgeable about shopping online can save you a lot of money, and these tips will help you get the maximum value, and save money when shopping online.

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1. Use Comparison Websites

It pays to spend a little extra time to check prices on different websites. If you want to get the best prices on the market but you feel overwhelmed by the amount of information you find on the Internet about a product, use a comparison website. This way, you can search and compare offers quickly and easily. There are dozens of sites online that will come in handy when you need to compare prices of products like computers, flights, hotels, insurance policies and many more.

2. Subscribe To Bulletins

Many people underestimate the power and importance of subscribing to special bulletin offers. This is the only avenue where you can receive timely offers of a particular brand or products when they are on sale. You may find it helpful to receive newsletters with all the discounts and promotions. Getting such offers will give you the opportunity to jump on these offers quickly and make the necessary purchase, thereby saving you some money.  Sometimes, store bulletins will include a special coupon for purchases made on a certain date.

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3. Use Coupons

When you shop online, almost all e-commerce shops have a space to add a discount coupon. Doing that can result in significant savings, so we recommend that you take caution in looking for discount codes and entering them during the online checkout process.

Most of the coupon websites are essentially online advertising sites that use direct marketing to facilitate the purchase, giving their users huge discounts. There are several coupon websites with great offers with the sole aim to attract the attention of users using discount offers to enable you to save lots of money.

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4. Read Product Reviews

One of the biggest benefits of online shopping is the ability to quickly and easily carry out an instant online research assessment of products. Before you make a big purchase, take advantage of the fact that you can read reviews about the product online or even watch reviews of real customers like that of extendmycloset.com and see what other users and customers have said about it. This way, you are not losing money on an ineffective or poor quality product.

5. Use Specific Websites

There are websites specifically built for selling cheap product. The prices are typically very low, so remember: you get what you pay for. While such websites are a perfect money-saving alternative with no hidden terms and conditions, some are fraudulent and sell fake or very low-quality products. Do some research by checking some details like the About Us page to ensure the company has a good reputation.

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6. Free Shipping

Some e-commerce stores offer free shipping when a certain set threshold has been spent. Also, free shipping is used by many stores at intervals as a promotional method to enlarge its customer base. These are usually done during Black Friday and holiday seasons like Christmas and Easter each year. You could simple save and wait for these times of the year before making a purchase. This way, you will be saving on shipping costs, which usually amount to up to 23% of the total cost of the product.

It is easy to find cheap products online if you are patient enough to follow these steps. You’ll get real value for your money.

Featured photo credit: Pixabay via pixabay.com

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George Olufemi O

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Last Updated on March 4, 2019

How to Use Credit Cards While Staying Out of Debt

How to Use Credit Cards While Staying Out of Debt

Many people will suggest that the best thing to do with your credit cards during these tough economic times is to cut them up with a pair of scissors. Indeed, if you are already in huge debt, you probably should stop using them and begin a payback strategy immediately. However, if you are not currently in trouble with your credit cards, there are wise ways to use them.

I happen to really love my credit cards so I will share with you my approach to how I use mine without getting into deep financial trouble.

Ever since about 1983 when I got my first Visa card, I continue to charge as many of my purchases as possible on credit. Everything from gas, groceries and monthly payments for services like my cable and home security monitoring are charged on credit. Despite my heavy usage, I have maintained the joy of never paying any interest fees at all on any of my credit cards.

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Here are some tips on how best to use your credit cards without falling into the trap of paying those nasty double-digit interest fees.

Do Not Treat Credit Cards as Your Funding Sources

Too many people treat their credit cards as funding sources for major purchases. Do not do this if you want to stay out of trouble. I use my credit cards as convenient financial instruments so I do not have to carry around much cash. In fact, I hate carrying cash, especially coins. When you buy things on credit, the purchases are clean and you will not get annoying coins back as change.

I do not rely on my Visa, MasterCard or American Express to fund any of my purchases, large or small. This brings me to my golden rule when it comes to whether I will pull out any of my credit cards either at a retail or online store.

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I never purchase anything with my credit cards if I do not have the actual cash on hand in my bank account.

If I really cannot pay for the item or service with cash that I already have at the bank, then I simply will not make the purchase. Remember, my credit cards are not used as funding sources. They are just convenient alternatives to actual cash in my pocket.

Make Sure to Always Pay Off Balances in Full Each Month

The next very important part of my overall strategy is to make absolutely sure that I pay the balances in full each and every month no matter how large they are. This should never be a problem if the cash has been budgeted for my purchases and secured in the bank. I have always paid my full balances each month ever since my very first credit card and this is why I never pay interest charges.

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Using Credit Cards with Rewards

Most of my credit cards are of the “no annual fees” type, including one MasterCard on a separate account I keep at home as a spare in case I lose my wallet or incur any fraudulent charges. However, I do use a main Visa card which does have an annual fee because all purchases on that card reward me with airline frequent flyer points. For me, the annual fee is worth it since I do travel and I get enough points to redeem many free flights.

You have to decide for yourself if you will charge enough purchases on credit each year without paying interest charges to warrant a credit card that rewards you with airline points (or other rewards). In my case, the answer is “yes” but that might not be the case for you.

I occasionally use a MasterCard or American Express card on small purchases just to keep those accounts active. Also, I have been to the odd retailer that accepted only a certain type of credit card, so I find that having one from each major company is quite handy. Aside from my main Visa card which earns the airline points, the rest of my cards are of the “no annual fees” variety.

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So this is how I use my credit cards without getting into any financial trouble with them. This strategy is recommended only if you are not in debt, of course. In fact, it is worth keeping in mind once you’re out of debt so that you can keep your credit cards active and treat them responsibly.

What are your credit card usage strategies? Let me know in the comments — I’d love to hear what methods you use.

Featured photo credit: Artem Bali via unsplash.com

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