With time so precious and the cost of living rising, online shopping is coming into its own.
Not only will you save money by not leaving home, but many e-commerce stores favour their online customers and reward them with exclusive online specials and free shipping.
In addition, knowing the latest online shopping hacks will ensure you get even more bang for your buck, stretching your hard-earned dollars further with every purchase.
Now is the time to get educated with our brilliant online shopping hacks to save money.
Further reading: 13 Online grocery shopping tips to save time and money.
1. Reward programs are your friend
Nearly every retailer now has a rewards program; some deliver in spades. You can research each program online to understand if it will benefit you. The best reward you for spending a certain amount on each shop.
In most cases, they are complementary, although a few might charge a nominal fee in return for a guaranteed set discount on full-price and sale items regardless of the total spend.
2. Be patient
Gone are the days when a sale happened twice a year and the Boxing Day sales would stop a nation.
If you have your eye on something, then wait!
A targeted sale or an overall discount sale is on at most retailers every week. Be prepared, try on the items beforehand to know your size, and then jump online to purchase when the sale starts.
3. Celebrate your birthday
Signing up with key retailers means you need to share your personal details, although many offer a birthday discount or voucher, which is a guaranteed win.
4. Sign up for shopping discounts
Sign up to the retailer’s mailing list. They often offer an incentive to join the list, and then you are informed of the latest range and, more importantly, will be first to hear about upcoming sales, store events and special offers. Do the same and follow them on social media as this is the first place they will post about a forthcoming flash sale or partner collaboration.
To ensure you don’t miss a deal, download the Honey browser extension which will search the web for discount codes when you reach the checkout.
More hacks for online shopping
5. Add to the shopping cart and leave
What? I hear you say.
This is one clever trick!
If you leave items in the cart or basket and then choose to leave the website, providing you have signed in or logged in, they will follow up to see if you want to finalise the sale and may offer a discount to entice you back.
6. Best days to shop
Studies show that Wednesdays to Fridays are the most popular days for retailers to commence a sale or offer a discount code. So these are the best days to browse to your heart’s content.
7. Seasonal shopping
This is an old-school hack.
If you know you are heading on a summer holiday later in the year, wait until the end-of-season sale or when they have transitioned into the next season as you are guaranteed to save precious dollars.
The only risk is that the exact piece you may want may no longer be available in your size.
8. Clear your browsing history
This hack is a true winner. It is essential to clear your browser history and cookies, or you can use an in-private browser window because a website can see if you have already been looking at specific products. If you have ever jumped online to compare prices for flights or accommodation, the price starts to increase. Spooky, but someone is watching!
Bonus tip: Sign up for newsletters
Signing up for newsletters can be a game-changer when saving money while shopping online.
By subscribing to newsletters, you can access early notifications on upcoming sales, limited-time offers, and special events, allowing you to snatch up bargains before they run out. Some retailers even offer new subscribers first-time customer discounts or unique coupon codes.
Staying connected through newsletters informs you about clearance sales and seasonal discounts, ensuring you never miss significant savings opportunities.
So, simply sharing your email can unlock a treasure trove of money-saving possibilities.
Stay safe while online shopping.
You now have all the tips to save your precious dollars at the online checkout, but always think before clicking to purchase.
Take time to check the returns policy on each website and vigilantly check for random charges added to your cart for additional items you don’t want.
Learn more about your rights and risks as an online shopper from the ACCC.
Armed with these brilliant online shopping hacks, you now have a powerful toolkit to make the most of your virtual retail experiences and save substantial money.
Remember to always compare prices across different platforms and employ cashback websites to earn rewards on your purchases. Utilise browser extensions and coupon websites to effortlessly access discounts, and strategically time your shopping to coincide with seasonal sales and major events like Black Friday. Additionally, signing up for newsletters and creating wish lists can grant you exclusive access to deals and early notifications on price drops.
Maintaining a budget and exercising self-discipline during your online shopping sprees will ensure you remain financially responsible and avoid impulse purchases.
Embrace these hacks, shop smartly, and enjoy an educated shopping experience to grab the best bargains in the world.