Love it or hate it, we all have to do it: shopping. We could be shopping for clothes, groceries, household items…the list goes on and on. In this age of consumerism, stores are designed for us to buy buy buy. Don’t fall into the trap of buying items that you don’t need or don’t want in the long run. We have gathered this list of tips and tricks from professional shoppers and store employees so that you can get what you want, pay as little as possible for it and get the product and run.
Follow the brands that you love on their social media so that you can get their discounts.
If there is a brand that you like, chances are you are interested in the new products that they are releasing. You will probably be interested in their online sales and even events. Forever 21 would tell their customers about grand openings and even secret concerts. By subscribing to their email list, following their Instagram and Twitter, you might end up saving a buck or two.
Just remember to make sure that you are following verified accounts because many are fake or “clickbait.” Always look for that blue check mark!
The live chat secret.
If you are shopping online, little did you know that you have a secret friend, the live chat person. Even though this person might be in another country, you can easily ask him for a discount code and chances are that they have one. If your shipment arrives late, you can also ask for a discount.
If you ordered a dress and it was verified that if would arrive by Friday but it came the next day, Saturday, tell the live chat person that your dress didn’t arrive in time for your sister’s birthday and you didn’t have anything to wear. A lot of times, the live chat person will sympathize and give you a discount on your product. This works very well for Amazon. Try this method over the phone too.
Snap your receipts with the Fetch Rewards app.
Fetch is an easy-to-use app that accumulates receipts from up to 14 days ago and rewards the user with points that can be redeemed for gift cards to a variety of different places! Every 1,000 points is equal to one dollar, and any random grocery, restaurant or gas receipt from the last two weeks can be used to earn approximately 25 points.
There are also “coupons” on this app that are used to persuade the user to try different products and purchase them for less money. If there is a preferred product, then it’s possible to save money on that item, then use the receipt from that product to earn even more points by submitting the receipt.
There’s also a neat feature, through a small blue circle next to the receipt scanner, that scans for emails from Best Buy, Walgreens, to Amazon (and more!), which allows shoppers to gain points through those orders.
Buy things online from Tuesday to Thursday for the best prices.
Studies have shown that the best prices are from Tuesday to Thursday. Monday is a complete no-shopping day because prices are likely to increase. November is an inflated price month due to Christmas, but post-Christmas December and January usually have many door-buster deals. Smaller brands are more likely to discount their products than large brands.
Do not use debit cards for shopping; always use credit cards.
When you use a debit card, the money is withdrawn from your card in an instant. There is probably very limited protection on a debit card also. It’s almost like you are paying with cash. When you use a credit card, your purchase is protected, meaning that if something goes wrong with your product and even if the store doesn’t take it back, you can most likely get a full refund. The best credit card for consumer protection is American Express.
Another benefit for using a credit card is that you can obtain points or rewards just for using it. These points can be redeemed for airline miles, gift cards, the list goes on and on. By using a credit card, it also helps build up your credit score so that when you are doing a big purchase like a house or car, you can obtain financing. If you have no credit, the only option would be to pay cold hard cash which is harder to come by.
Follow influencers and bloggers for discounts.
Influencers and bloggers are hired to work with brands. Their job is to make a product look amazing and offer a promo code or special offer to their followers. I’m an influencer with a following of 290,000. I focus on health and wellness and work with all kinds of brands. Whenever I promote a product, I will always offer a discount or promo code. This way, brands are able to track how many of my followers bought a product because of the promotion.
Leave items in your cart for a while.
If you leave items in your shopping cart for a few hours, sometimes the brands will come back to you with a special discount or promotion. They know that you are interested in their product but you might need that little extra push to make that purchase. It’s such a good marketing tactic, but hey, you’re smarter than them, so get your discounts.
Read the reviews and ratings.
Always read the reviews and ratings before you buy a product. It’s the only way to get the truth because you don’t want to be scammed by good marketing. On Amazon, its good to buy the products that have the most stars and the most reviews. If something only has a few reviews, it could mean that the product isn’t popular or has just entered the market. This is a simple way of minimizing risk.
Use the Honey plug in to get discounts.
The Honey plug in can be installed on the Chrome browser. When you are making a purchase, it will scour the web for discount and promo codes automatically.
The next time you are going shopping, be sure to go over this list of shopping hacks. We want to make sure that you keep your wallet fat and that you get exactly what you need. Also, don’t forget to use the Fetch Rewards App to scan your receipts and rack up those points. You can redeem the points for gifts cards at your favorite stores and restaurants. Happy Shopping!
Do you have any online shopping hacks? We would love to hear them. Shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org with your tips and tricks.
David Christopher Lee is an award winning photographer and journalist based in Los Angeles and New York. David’s work has been published in major magazines such as GQ, Vogue, Instyle, People, Teen, Men’s Health, Departures & many more.
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