Saturday, December 8, 2012

Four Steps to Online Shopping Like A Ninja

Image courtesy of the Shopaholic movie and crazy women everywhere

I haven't gone to school in a town with a half decent mall... ever. When the nearest shopping center is an hour or two away, it's a huge buzzkill. I spend a huge chunk of my time shopping online ("market research" as Boyfriend calls it) and these are the top ways I save money every time.

Step 1: Gift Cards

Try GiftCardGranny.com or JunkCard.com to look for discounted gift cards for the store you're stalking. If you can get an $88 Ann Taylor gift card for $65 (this was an actual gift card on the site at the time I was writing this), you've already saved yourself 26%. Even if the discount isn't quite that flashy, it's still worth it - but watch out for shipping costs!

Step 2: Cash Back Programs

If you haven't already, sign up for eBates. Seriously, you're going to feel super dumb if you don't - this is a no brainer. The site allows members to click through to (almost) any retailer and earn a small percentage cash back just for using the service. They pay out every few months, and believe me, 5% back here and there adds up like whoa.

Some credit cards also offer similar programs - if you log in to your credit company's website (Chase and Discover both do it) and click through their links, you can earn a percentage back as a credit to your account. I find that eBates has higher percentage rewards, and I prefer getting mine back to my PayPal account, but these are still great options.

Step 3: Coupon Code Sites

I basically never shop online without a coupon code. Even Forever 21 runs unadvertised promos sometimes if you're patient! RetailMeNot.com is my absolute favorite, but CouponCabin.com is also pretty reliable. Google "Suchandsuchstore coupon code" for a broader range of options, but these two sites are safe bets every time.

Step 4: Flash Sale Sites

Looking for serious discounts on designer everything? Check out these members-only flash sale sites:

Also, Shop It To Me isn't a flash sale site, but they do send you a personalized email a few times a week with current sales. Tuesdays and Fridays are my favorite days, because I know my sale mail is coming!

Do you guys have any online shopping tips? Share them in the comments!

8 comments

  1. Online shopping is such a tease...I live in Canada, and anything ordered would be subject to duties and taxes - I know some people who've ended up paying more than normal retail price for items once all the shipping and fees are factored in...
    not fair!

    For now, I'll have to be content with window shopping (and living vicariously through folks like you!)

    Devon
    www.informedstyle.com

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    1. Yuuuuck, I didn't even think about that! Is every site that way, or just some?

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  2. Great tips! Always nice to use for those sites that are online stores only and don't have physical locations to shop at, like ASOS (a favorite of mine!).

    Found your blog through Serena at The Serena Saga and love it! New follower. :)

    Melanie
    Style to Stage

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    1. So happy to have you! ASOS is one of my favorites as well :) And it's more fun than Forever, because there's less chance everyone else will have it too!

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  3. All of these are such great ideas ... I just love knowing someone else online shops the same way I do :) Another site I just came across that I'm playing around with - milled.com. Their tagline is "We subscribe to emailed offers so you don't have to." You can search any brand to find what deal they're running. Cheers to savvy shopping! :)

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    1. Now THAT sounds freakin awesome. Sale emails drive me crazy, but you kind of have to do it! definitely checking this out.

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  4. What a fantastic post!! These are great tips. I love to shop online for clothes, shoes and beauty products and I definitely do so much more than I actually go to the stores. The problem is I'm not patient and I don't always wait for the deals. I must get better about this!

    XO, Gina
    http://classyeverafter.blogspot.com

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    1. Oh girl... I feel you. I need to start going in to the brick and mortar stores because the deals are better, but there's something about Saturday morning shopping on the couch in my jammies that gets me every time!

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