1.Make Your Holiday Shopping Budget and Stick to it
When you’re planning your online shopping, the first and most important thing to do is to make a budget and stick to it, writing down your budget and then spreading what you plan to spend on food and presents etc you make it easier for your self to resist impulse buys and unnecessary spending. The shopping tips in this article will help you to plan your shopping effectively and will help you to stick to your budget.
2.Cash Back On Online Shopping
One of the main step in planning your shopping is to look at cash-back websites, for example, TopCashback and Quidco are the top ones right now. Check if the retailer is listed and click through the link you will get a percentage of your spending back depending on the retailer it’s important you check different cash-back sites as some retailers will be listed on one but not other also the cash back vary on different cash-back sites.
Just to make sure your cashback track clear your cookies before clicking through.
Also, some debit and credit cards offer cashback on utility bills and shopping etc., so it’s worth checking you’rs. Remember, if you do go for a credit card just make sure you make the full monthly payment to avoid interest.
3.Tips to Find the Cheapest Deal Online
One of my favourite websites is camelcamelcamel, it’s an Amazon website where you can check price history for all products listed on Amazon. It shows you the item’s current price, lowest it has ever been and an average for the specific item. You can also set alerts for your desired price and when the price drops to that amount or lower, the website will send you an email to let you know.
Never buy anything for full price, there is always an offer somewhere, you just have to have a look around or in rare cases to be patient and wait for a while.
The simplest way is to search the retailer name + promo codes or discount code on Google.
Alternatively, you can download a Google Chrome plug-in “honey” which checks the web for you and alerts you when there is a code available.
5.Don’t forget your loyalty cards
There are a lot of loyalty scheme out there now and if you use them properly they really do pay off, for example, Boots, Nectar, Tesco Clubcard, Superdrug Health & Beautycard are some of them and they really are useful especially in the seasonal periods as Boots do plenty of extra points offers for example, £10 worth of points for £50 spent and Superdrug gives you free delivery on all orders over £10 plus points and then special offers for members also.
Sainsbury’s has an offer, where they let you multiply nectar points. For example, you can turn £2.50 worth of points to £5. Tesco also offers something similar where if you spend the points with a specific retailer you can claim offer double the value of your points.
Always use your loyalty cards when shopping online. This shopping habit will save you money and sometimes a substantial amount. For example, recently a friend was buying car insurance policy online from Tesco, the insurance policy price was around £1100 which came down to around £990 when he entered his Tesco Clubcard details.
6.Amazon 30 Day Free Trial
It is the best time to take advantage of Amazon’s free trial especially for the free prime delivery you also get prime video, prime music and prime photos. If you’re the forgetful type you can cancel the renewal straight away and still take advantage of it until the 30 days run out.
If you decide to keep it it’s £79 per year or £7.99 per month. Also if you ’re a student, you can get extra benefits from Amazon Student. Amazon Student gives you gives you all the benefits of Amazon Prime for half the price plus student get a six-month free trial, you can continue this membership at £39 per year.
7.Sell Unwanted Items For Extra Cash
Sell last years unwanted gifts or other items, for example, coats handbags or shoes etc for a little extra cash on websites like eBay, Depop, Shpock, Gumtree or Facebook. But Before selling anything on these platforms, make sure you follow the safety rules below.
- Represent the items you are selling fairly and accurately.
- State your return policy clearly in your listing.
- Respond promptly to buyers’ questions.
- Review your buyer’s Feedback. Learn how to prevent members with low Feedback from bidding on your items.
- Use extra caution with unknown or new buyers and unusual bidding activity.
- Make it easy for your buyers to pay by offering PayPal.
- Include detailed postage and packing information in the item description as well as the location of the item.
- Use Immediate Payments for fixed-price listings and listings where you use the Buy it now option.
- Use a postal service that provides a tracking number. This can help resolve disputes in cases where a buyer doesn’t receive an item.
- Keep your postal receipts as proof that the item was sent.
- Keep any proof of your item’s authenticity.
- Verify payment before sending items (including holding cheques until they clear).
- Learn to recognise counterfeit schemes.
- Only send items to the verified billing address on the buyer’s credit card account (if applicable).
- Use extra caution with international payments and revised postage information,
8.Designer Items at a Budget Price
Surprise your loved ones this holiday season with designer items at an incredible price, you can do this by buying in the flash sales where you get prices as low as 85% but you do have to be quick because the stock is generally limited.
Websites like Cocosa and outlet will alert you to upcoming sales and offers but be absolutely sure you are dealing with a legitimate retailer before purchasing anything.
9.Check Delivery Prices
Whether you’re sending parcels you sold on eBay or are sending gifts to family and friends make sure you check online for the best prices, although Royal Mail is one of the cheapest if your sending a letter or card or even a small parcel but it can be expensive if the items you are sending are large and heavy.
You can get a much better rate from discount courier service if you check around but please check your rights for example what will happen if the item is lost or damaged and whether you need additional insurance.
10.’Special offers’ aren’t always special.
Remember just because the retailer says the ‘lowest ever price’ isn’t always the truth, in most cases, you can find the same item at the same price or lower throughout the year.
I was reading an article from ‘which?’ the other day, which said after a years research (six months prior and six months after Black Friday) they found customers can get 87% of the sale items at the same or lower price throughout the year. This now is a good time to use Tip no.3.