Is shopping smartly and spending less at the top of your agenda? What about tackling sales and earning money from the things you’ve bought?
Whether you’re tight on a budget or just want to optimize every dollar you spend, there are several ways to save even more money when shopping.
If you’re looking for ideas on how to make the most of your money the next time you hit the stores – or the Internet, here are five smart shopping tips to help you out. And don’t forget – shopping through Splender means you earn cash back on every purchase, helping you make the most of every penny.
- Shop in the Off-Season
Most big reduction sales occur at the end of each season to help stores get rid of their previous seasonal clothing and make room for the new season’s upcoming trends. These sales usually last for a few weeks, and as they draw to a close, the prices get lower.
Most people tend to think traditionally: looking for summer clothing in the summer; thinking about bundling up in the winter—you get the picture. But there is no better time to buy clothing than when a sale is going on. During a sale, items can be discounted 20, 30 or even 50 percent. For example, sandals aren’t very functional in the snow, but you can easily get them for next-to-nothing during the winter.
Only purchase what you need to make it through the current season and wait until the end of the season to outfit yourself for next year. Once you begin doing this regularly and realize the savings, you’ll be hooked – and your savings account will be reaping the benefits.
- Compare Prices
With that being said, a “sale” price isn’t always the “best” price. Some merchants may offer a sale price on an item for a limited time, while others discount the price on the same item every day. Having an item’s manufacturer, model number and other identifying information can help you find the best price for the item you want.
You can also check out websites that compare prices for items offered online. Some websites also compare prices offered at stores in your area. There are a number of different price comparison tools and websites such as PriceBlink, PriceGrabber and InvisibleHand. However, if you do decide to buy online, be sure to keep shipping costs and delivery time in mind, as they factor into the final price and definitely the convenience factor.
You can even use shopping apps like Bakodo that allow you to scan the bar code of an item and compare the cost at local retailers and online. Apps like these make it easy to compare prices in seconds and help you decide whether you should arrange for a store pick up or have the item delivered.
And don’t forget—at Splender.com you can search for items at hundreds of tops stores and browse for the best prices, cash back deals and free shipping offers!
- Use Coupons
So, “where do you find all the coupons,” you might ask? It’s really not a secret. They’re everywhere! The best place to find coupons for everyday items is in the Sunday paper. Don’t forget online resources, too. Lots of websites have printable coupons for both products and stores that you should check out regularly.
You can also look for promo codes to use during online transactions for general discounts or free shipping, and you can sign up for daily deal alerts from a variety of Internet sources. From Facebook to manufacturer websites, you’ll find them in more places than you’d ever imagine. Splender.com is a great resource, too. When shopping through Splender, you’ll find coupon codes from your favorite stores. Combine Splender’s coupons and cash back rewards to maximize your savings.
Keep in mind that one of the biggest mistakes you can make is to use a coupon just for the sake of using it. The key is to wait until that item goes on sale or when the store is running a promotion on that item to double up offers.
Also, it’s a good idea to sign up for the e-mail lists of your favorite retailers so you’ll be in the know about great sales, discounts and coupons that can save you even more money!
- Maximize Credit Card Rewards
Another smart shopping tip is to take advantage of credit card rewards programs. Many of us turn to credit cards for purchases big and small. And why not, especially when you’re signed up for a rewards card where each dollar spent can earn you points that can later be used to redeem plane tickets, buy gift cards or pay off your monthly bill.
If you’re planning to purchase a big-ticket item, consider charging the purchase to earn rewards points or cash back through a rewards program. Depending on the card, it isn’t uncommon to receive five percent or more cash back on certain purchases or earn points that you can cash in for big rewards. Just remember to read the fine line print of the credit card terms so you know which purchases are eligible.
- Cash in on Cash Back Shopping Sites
And finally, earn cash back from sites like Splender! Splender gives you the opportunity to receive cash back while shopping online by simply making your purchases through the site. Hundreds of popular and well-known stores work with these cash back sites including J.Crew (2% cash back), See’s Candies (6% cash back) Sephora (8% cash back), Kate Spade (6% cash back) and Sears (4% cash back).
So, go ahead, treat yourself! Self-reward isn’t a crime—just stick within your budget, especially when you’ve already made the most of every dollar you’re spending. Utilizing these smart shopping tips will help you budget, save money and still look fabulous!
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