6 Tips to Find a Better Deal Online

Coin dropping into piggy bank represents saving money.

Every little bit counts: save money by shopping for discounts online.

Online shopping has a lot going for it—you can do it from anywhere, you get to avoid mall crowds and lines at the checkout counter, and you can do it without ever changing out of your pajamas! The only thing that could possibly improve your online shipping experience? Finding deals, of course!

Here are some tips for finding great deals online:

Shop around. You probably wouldn’t trust that the first brick-and-mortar store you walk into is offering you the best price on any given item, so you should be equally skeptical when shopping online. Even if you found the item on your all-time favorite website, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the best deal out there. Before you click the “Buy” button, check around on some other sites to make sure no one else is offering the same product for less. Online marketplaces, like SheepBuy, often have better deals than major retailers.

Consider lightly used items. Especially if you’re looking at a high cost item (at least $100), you can often find it used online for a fraction of the price of a new item. Before you assume that you need a new one, really think it over. Why is it better if it’s new? For certain products, getting a new item is a sanitary or safety concerns, but for most items, there’s really little difference.

Search for misspellings. When searching on an online marketplace, try using a common misspelling for a term, and see if anything comes up. Sometimes sellers will unknowingly hurt their own sales by making a typo, so they’ll have fewer offers – and often a lower price as a result.

If you can, wait a bit. Online sellers need to get rid of their last-season merchandise just like brick-and-mortar stores. If you want a winter sweater but think that it can wait until next year, hold out until spring when it will probably be on sale for a fraction of its original price.

Try leaving things in your shopping cart. Certain websites will reward the non-impulse buyer. Sometimes, if you leave items in your shopping cart for a few days, the store will send you a coupon for your items. Other sites that don’t offer coupons may help you out in other ways, such as alerting you if items in your shopping cart go on sale at any point. It’s hard to know which sites offer these incentives and which don’t, but if your purchases can wait a couple days, it’s worth it to try leaving merchandise in your shopping cart and seeing what happens. You never know!

Embrace coupons. If there’s a box for a “promotional code” or “coupon code” when you’re checking out on an online store, search around for a coupon real quick before finalizing your purchase. Websites like Retailmenot.com and Coupons.com are good for this, but a simple Google search (try: “(store name)” + coupon) can work, too.