The retail industry is predicting that the 2014 holiday season will be the biggest ever for online shopping. Nationally, consumers are buying more than half their gifts online — and many of you have probably already started your holiday shopping!
With price wars going on between online and traditional retailers, more shoppers are heading to the interwebs to try to score their goods for less. With so many sites offering free shipping, it’s kind of a no-brainer to hit the shops online!
But – there’s something you should know. There’s lots going on behind the scenes of online stores, with ‘dynamic pricing’ where highly sought after products’ prices can fluctuate over a matter of minutes!! Crazy right?
So how do you make sure you’re getting the best deals? Check out these tips below:
Money Saving Tips for Holiday Shopping
Always price compare.
Check out resources like Pricegrabber or TheFind.com which can compare prices on thousands of items from numerous online retailers.
Look for a coupon code.
You know when you check out online, there’s usually a box for a promo or coupon code. Never leave that empty!! Do a quick web search for that retailer and the term “coupon code” or check sites like RetailMeNot or DealSpotr for promo codes and discounts.
Try walking away.
I’ve found that sometimes if you “abandon” your shopping cart after placing a few items inside it, that the retailer will email you with a coupon code to entice you to complete your purchase. This typically only works if you have an account set up with that particular retailer and you must be logged in when you load and leave your cart. It’s not a guaranteed strategy, but it’s worth a shot!
Follow your favorites.
I’ve found that by following my favorite brands and stores on social media, I’ll occasionally be privy to special deals and promotions that they only share with their fans and followers.
Never pay for shipping.
Only shop online when you can get free shipping. Paying for shipping is for the birds!! Check out coupon sites for free shipping codes, or wait and shop on free shipping day. You can also sign up for Amazon Prime, to receive free two-day shipping on Amazon, or grab Target’s REDcard (debit or credit), to get free shipping and 5% off at Target.
Sign up for price alerts.
There are several sites online that allow you to track specific items and receive e-mail alerts when they go on sale. Some even track price history, so you can see if the item has ever been listed for less than it is at the present! Shoptagr is one option that offers these features, and also includes a Chrome browser extension for easy adding and tagging of items you want tracked.
Get Your DIY On
Last, but certainly not least, consider making your own holiday gifts and decor. As a starter, I love this roundup of 30 Christmas Crafts by Mod Podge Rocks. DIY Candy’s list of 20 Sharpie Crafts has some unique gift options, too.
Editor’s note: Due to the pandemic, some of the general wedding planning advice we share may not be applicable or possible due to restrictions on events. Please adhere to all current regulations and stay safe and healthy! Get more pandemic wedding resources here.