How to save money shopping
If you are like most people, shopping for the stuff you need eats up a significant chunk of your budget. We all have our own shopping habits, some that get us the best stuff, and others that save every penny we can spare while shopping.
While you can save money on almost everything you buy, the process of scouting for the best deals is oftentimes too demanding, but there is always an easier way to do anything when you have an internet connection. If you are looking to save money on shopping, here are eight easy practices that you will find invaluable.
1. Use money saving shopping websites
There are many perks to shopping online but one of the most underrated is the power of money-saving tools. Websites such as Ebates, Paribus, Ibotta, and Dosh, just to name a few, bring together all the great saving opportunities and even price comparisons from the top retailers. These sites help you find coupons, price drops, cash back offers, and money backs from your favorite online shopping sites to save you money. If you are serious about saving money, then your first step should be to sign up for these services and take time to find out which ones will serve you best.
2. Try generic brands of items you buy regularly
There is no use spending more money on brand names of the products you buy regularly. Most people make the switch to generic products because most of these products taste the same as their branded counterparts.
You can save as much as 20 to 30 percent on the amount you spend on regular shopping just by going for the generic brands of basic products including foodstuffs, clothing, and household products. If you spend a large portion of your regular income on prescription drugs, it is even more important for you to try out cheaper generic brands.
3. Look for affordable clothing stores
As you shop for the best deals on clothing, the best places to start is at low-end retailers and climb up from there. Thrift stores, yard sales, and consignment shops offer clothing at the best prices, but that is if you can find the types of clothes for which you are shopping for.
The internet, too, has its fair share of low-end clothing retailers that offer top quality clothing at amazingly low prices. One advantage of taking time to scour the internet for the most affordable clothing stores is that you can always follow your favorite stores to sample new stocks when inventories are updated without worrying about pricing.
4. Avoid falling into retail traps
Buy more, save more, bounce-back coupons, new store card discounts, clearance items, and limited-time deals are some of the most common traps designed to make you spend more than you should. You should be smart enough to see such schemes when they do not serve you. You should always be guided by your shopping list and a wish list. Only buy what you need, but if an offer comes by and the item is on your wish list, then you can indulge. If you are able to see a deal for what it's worth, you will not be susceptible to advertiser's schemes.
5. Learn to do price comparisons
Are you the kind of person who still makes a purchase online even without googling prices to find out what other retailers are offering? If you are, this has to change. A simple search for what you intend to buy on the internet will return a list of the most competitive offers, which you can either go with, or you can leverage to get a good bargain with your favorite retailer. Better still, you can use price-comparison tools on the internet to further simplify the process and to view offers from even more retailers.
6. Integrate coupons in your everyday shopping habits
Redeeming shopping coupons has emerged as the most popular way for shoppers to save money on their regular shopping. There are multi-billion companies operating on the internet whose business is just to collect coupons from various retailers and e-commerce sites and put them in one place for shoppers to use. If you are serious about saving money on your shopping, make it a ritual to look for coupons of anything you wish to buy even before adding it in the cart.
7. Take advantage of tax-free days
Does your state offer a tax-free week or tax-free weekend? There is no better opportunity to hit the store and stock up for the season, school year, holiday or any special occasion without paying taxes. The secret is to know what types of goods are tax exempt during the tax-free period and to have a wish-list of the things you need to buy during the offer to maximize your shopping. You can save hundreds of dollars on your shopping just by getting ready for the tax-free week or weekend.
8. Use negotiation as your hidden shopping skill
The most satisfied shoppers are often those who have mastered the art of negotiation. Most people take it for granted that proper negotiation not only gets them the best prices but also establishes a kind of relationship with the seller that will last beyond the current sale.
A wise shopper does not shy away from a non-fixed price and instead aims to convince the seller why a better deal should cost less. The art of negotiation is complex, but it gets easier with practice. Proper negotiation is a rhythmic process that involves the buyer and seller establishing a quasi-personal relationship, and trying to leverage it to make the most of the business at hand.
Save Money Shopping Conclusion
There are a lot more things you can do to save money on your regular shopping, most of which are best when used over time. This is why it is a good idea to embody these tips and begin formulating your own shopping ritual that includes these habits. Should you save 10 percent of your monthly expenditure, imagine how much you will have saved at the end of the year.