How do you safely find the best deals in the virtual jungle? Our top 10 shopping tricks aim to get you the very best price on everything you need to buy, with tools to spot hidden bargains & slash prices:
1.Find the cheapest online prices with one click
Shopbots, or shopping robots, are geeky tools which trawl through selected e-tailers’ products and prices to find the cheapest deal.
2.Map hidden local eBay bargains
Whether it’s a Playstation or children’s books, eBay sellers often specify items must be collected in person. As this often means fewer bids, there are bargains to be had.
You can’t normally search collection-only but the built a mapping tool local eBay deals mapper lets you type in your postcode and how far you’re prepared to schlep, and it pinpoints nearby gems.
It’s available as a free Android app or iPhone app. These map your current location and tell you how far you need to go to pick up a bargain.
3.You’ve MORE rights online than in-store
Many people are surprised to learn you’ve EXTRA rights buying online (or by telephone/catalogue) due to the Consumer Contracts Regulations.
These give a legal right to decide to return most goods back within a fortnight for a full refund (including outward delivery costs), even if there’s no fault. You’ll usually need to pay for the return delivery – you’ve a further 14 days to actually return them.
4.Search 25 outlets for bargains with the Outlet Discount Finder
Many drive miles to outlet villages to snap up end-of-line bargains. But these days lots of high street and high-end stores have online outlet stores, either via eBay or special websites. Search in google and youll find most of the top stores have these.
5.Uncover hidden big-brand flash sales
If you’re going to stick with brand loyalty and shop upmarket branded and designer goods e-tailers run ‘membership clubs’. You register for free, then they send alerts for online flash sales lasting two to five days
6.Get the latest discount codes and hot bargains
Voucher sites are chock-a-block with daily-updated, fully checked-out deals, sales and loopholes, but there are plenty of other discount sites that can save you money too. Google the site your buying from and discount code and you’re sure to come up with a code to save you money
7.Ask a free site to negotiate discounts for you
if you’re struggling to find a deal, Flubit is a free site that aims to negotiate discounts for you.
You can use the site to see if any of its partner retailers can beat the price listed on Amazon.co.uk. When it receives a demand, it goes to a bank of online retailers selling the exact same item and tries to negotiate a better price. As each offer’s unique, Flubit claims many retailers are willing to offer big discounts
8.Bag 5% off ALL your shopping
Cashback credit cards pay you every time you spend on ’em. The idea’s you grab one and set up a direct debit to repay IN FULL every month so it’s interest-free. To boost the gain, use it for all spending instead of cash, cheques or debit cards.
9.Sign up to retailers’ newsletters for big discounts
E-tailers try to reel you in by offering incentives to shop online when you sign up to their marketing emails.
It can mean a percentage discount code, or a straight discount off your first shop.
10.Get nifty price-drop alert emails
Price-drop alert site LoveSales allows you to add items from online retailers to your ‘Love Sales list’ and name the price you’re willing to pay. It then sends you an alert when the item hits your target price.
You need to register first, then when you’re browsing a particular item from one retailer, you pop it on your list. After that, the wait is on for the price to fall and the email to land in your inbox.