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Shopping Tips

10 Strategies to Get Best Online Discounts

Electronic retailers have years of experience of how to do business and how to attract customers to this ever increasing shopping community. They have ways to get the most money out of your wallet. Shoppers are no less savvy though and know many tricks how to get the best deals and discounts too. Here are 10 tips how:

1. Escape the dynamic pricing

Dynamic pricing is a price differentiation when different customers get different pricing. This is based on demand, market factors, and your unique shopping and browsing patterns. Today’s websites can track your online activity, thanks to cookies, so merchants often know what you are looking for and can offer you a price, based on your browsed options. This means that you can buy the item cheaper or more expensive than other customers from a different computer and with different search record.

You should try to avoid this by erasing cookies and logging out of your account. Also try using your browser’s “private” or “incognito” window while shopping, because cookies don’t get saved this way.

2. Leave items in your cart, don’t finish buying

This strategy can be really rewarding. All you have to do is log into your account, pick your items, put them in your cart, and leave. Merchants will see this unfinished purchase and will definitely want to close the deal. You should get some coupons or a better price in a day or two. Not every website operates that way, but some do. Some known stores that do that are Bed, Bath & Beyond, Dick’s Sporting Goods, JC Penney, Macy’s, Office Max, Williams-Sonoma, and others.

3. Look for coupons

If the abandoned cart strategy does not generate you any coupons, look for them more proactively. Check out Retailmenot.com, couponcraze.com, and couponmom.com. Type the “desired store coupon code” in Google search and see what you could find.

4. Use social media

You can follow your favorite stores on Twitter or Facebook. Many companies offer coupon codes from time to time on their feed. They are seeking followers and will reward them with exclusive deals for loyalty.

5. Sign up for emails

Many companies encourage email sign-ups with great periodic coupons. Some of those coupons are one-time use, but you can sign up with a few email addresses and collect a few codes. Some stores will give you a code just for signing up, like Kohl’s and West Elm with their 10% off.

You should also sign up with competing stores because you will be able to compare deals, prices, and even ask for price match.

Not to overwhelm your email inbox, organize it in a way that all incoming coupons and discounts will be sent to a separate folder. This way you will have all your shopping materials in one place and will be able to spot trends. You will notice that screaming “one day only” sales are announced every other month, so shop in peace without any sense of urgency.

6. Talk to customer service

You don’t always have to buy something when you get a good coupon code. However, when you do run out of something, the coupon might be expired. Most companies will agree to extend the coupon date for serious buyers, because they are in the business of selling. It’s not a guarantee, but do call them and see what can be done about that coupon.

7. Compare prices for in-store and online

You might be surprised to find out that prices online and in-store don’t always match. We all have smartphones, so once you see something you like in the store, go to their online marketplace and compare prices. If you are shopping online, you can give a quick call and inquire about the price in the physical store near you.

8. Compare online prices among retailers

You should also compare what different retailers charge for the same or similar item. Go to Google Shopping, bizrate.com, or mysimon.com to find the best price around.

9. Use multiple coupons

Some retailers, like Kohl’s, will let you stack multiple coupons at the checkout. Make sure you do this with care and in a right order to maximize your savings. If you have a 20% off your purchase and $15 off your purchase, use the first coupon first to get the most off and only then the dollar amount coupon. Be smart and get the deepest discounts with calculation.

10. Look for price drop refunds

If the price drops within a few days after you buy something, you can talk to the customer service, show them your check with the purchase day, and see if you can get a refund for the difference. Most stores will work with you. You have to contact them in a few days, so don’t wait. Amazon, for example, will issue the refund within 7 days after the delivery of your item. You can monitor Amazon prices on Camelcamelcamel.com. Some credit cards also offer price change protection, so find out if yours does.