30% of American citizens purchase wares daily using online shops. If we look at weekly statistics, it’s even higher, up to 40%. We could definitely say that e-commerce has taken a large part of the retail market. With the coming of e-commerce, certain things have changed. We don’t go strolling along the shelves filled with products or wait in line at the counter. Instead, we browse the internet and wait for the courier to come. However, not only the process of buying things have changed. So, have the ways to save money shopping. We all love to save up or purchase things at great discounts. So let’s see how it’s done in online shopping.
One of the differences in online shopping is that you can visit tens and hundreds of shops a day. Instead of just around ten at the mall. After that, you usually get tired and go have a snack. With online shopping, you can browse as much as you want and change between shops in the blink of an eye. This advantage, however, may not play into your hand during sales seasons. This is when clients often pursue the best offer instead of just browsing and it’s quite hard to keep track of all the online shops that exist in your town.
So, in order to compensate for this inconvenience, enterprising people have developed specialized sites who gather special offers from different shops so that you can browse the discounts first and decide on the brand that will bring you more profit.
Coupons are actually a little bit similar to discounts, yet somewhat different. Well, the point of them hasn’t changed really. It’s advertising and attracting customers. However, nowadays, the coupons are found online on specialized sites. Basically, you can get a special offer (sometimes limited number per day) in a form of a coupon or a code to present it later at the services. The difference with coupons is that the nature of the service is often different. You may get additional wares to your purchases or a large discount and the offer lasts longer ( until all the coupons have been distributed). They are a good way to research new shops at a cheaper price or to buy stuff from familiar but unpopular shops. There is a ton of different coupon sites: Ebates, Coupon.com, CouponBirds, Groupon are among the largest.
Free shipping offers
Some e-commerce shops don’t have offices that accept customers or they are situated in the middle of nowhere (cheap rent here) and the only viable way to get their merchandise is to order shipping. However, in some cases, especially for large products, the shipping costs may be considerable. That is why such companies sometimes offer free shipping instead of product discounts but the nature of the deal is practically the same as a discount. Some percentage of the total product price is lowered, it just comes from the shipping expenses, not the product itself.
The Internet is a place where a lot of information is copied. The same goes for the money saving sites. If you visit a few, you will see that around 65% of the offers can be found on each of the sites. However, major online shopping money saving sites have become so large that they can actually communicate with certain shops and ask them to keep an offer or two exclusive for their website. Meaning, you can’t find it anywhere else. This is profitable for the site since they get much more visitors and it’s profitable for the shops since such offers can be hosted for free.
Cashback is a comparatively new feature that offers to return some of the money the clients had spent on a product. There are some nuances of course. You have to purchase the product via the cashback site or use a cashback credit card and ensure that the shop you are buying from is participating in the program. Well, there are some credit cards that return a percentage from every purchase. It is smaller, yes, 3-5% but it’s every purchase. Specialized offers may be as much as 20%. So, it’s another form of the discount but it allows the advertising sites to attract customers who will browse their pages and will be shown ads. The more ads are watched, the more the site is paid by the advertising companies. That’s actually how affiliate marketing works but it shouldn’t bother you much. For the client it’s simple. Bought a product, got some of the money back.
Holidays are the epiphany of shopping. A lot of people turn up with more free time on their hands than usual so they often spend it to do some unfinished home chores or, most importantly, to shop. In order to motivate clients to shop instead of washing the dishes, different shops start whole discount campaigns, which are especially large at the end of the year, when shops want to get all the products off their storages. So, that’s an actually awesome time to visit the money saving sites to get the best offer before everything got taken.