Did you know that Australia is the 4th most expensive country in the world when it comes to food, rent and healthcare? Thankfully there is one place you can save big bucks – online. All you need is a bit of insider knowledge, and that’s where Online Marketing Manager at CupoNation, Justin Small comes in, sharing his top tricks of the trade for nabbing the best deals online. Here’s his advice:
- Use comparison sites. Make sure you always compare prices when purchasing something online instead of buying things at the spur of the moment. One of the best parts of shopping online is the vast breadth of information available. Comparison portals like Shopping.com Australia help you easily compare prices and get more information on the best deals.
- Get a second opinion. See the internet as your friend, not your foe. You might be surprised by how many like-minded people you will find online. What is the best place to buy a Yves Saint Laurent cross-body bag? At which online store do I get original Louboutin high heels the cheapest? And where can I just find some comfy shoes to exercise in? There are all kinds of forums where you can post your questions and immediately get helpful and genuine responses.
- “Beat the crowd”. Of course, there are countless “special deals”, “exclusive offers” and “SALE discounts” whenever a seasonal event (e.g. Christmas, Back to School) occurs. Many people end up spending a lot of money thinking that they are saving. What retailers don’t tell you is: online retailers begin raising their prices long before the first shopaholics think of the upcoming seasonal sales. A lot of them then decrease their prices afterward to maintain revenue levels. More often than not, you are actually buying products at regular prices. So, be clever and beat the crowd! Wait for seasonal events like Christmas to pass and do your online shopping then. Insider tip: make it a birthday instead of a Christmas gift.
- Wait for “real” sales events. There are exceptions to every rule and of course there are explicitly defined global sales events like Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Boxing Day, where it pays to splurge. Black Friday, for instance, has turned out to be the world’s biggest shopping phenomenon with retailers offering massive discounts on most of their products. In 2015, 15 million people worldwide shopped online during Black Friday, which is a 10% increase compared to the year before. Around the globe, people saved more than $1.5 billion during Black Friday 2015.
- Frequent coupon websites. One of the lowest hanging fruits is to frequent the various coupon websites. Many sites like CupoNation Australia or couponic.com.au exist to help Aussie shoppers save as much as possible. Sites like these aggregate all kinds of brands into one location and display promo codes, deals and vouchers that are constantly monitored and updated. They also include important information about the retailer to help you make an informed purchasing decision.
- Ask the retailer for discounts. When you want something it often makes sense to go directly to the source to get it – and the same applies for scoring deals on your new wardrobe hopefuls. Take advantage of the opportunities that companies offer to get in touch with them. Sometimes you may be able to score a unique deal or rare promo code that isn’t heavily promoted. So be on the lookout for dialogue boxes and great customer service and don’t be afraid to ask.
- Sign up/register with your favourites. Another easy way to save money is to sign up or register with your favourite brands online or in-store. The range of deals that companies offer for doing so is huge. Just for signing up, many companies will offer discounts and deals or throw in some free shipping. And that’s on top of guaranteeing things like first-picks, exclusive promo codes and seasonal deals sent straight to your inbox. What’s also great is that with Gmail you can organise your inbox into separate promotional sections, so you can view them at-a-glance in the same place.
- Seek out brands on social media. Brands will sometimes reward their followers and loyal customers by sharing deals via social media that may not be advertised elsewhere. Participating in interactive campaigns can also lead to some great deals or discounts. It’s common for brands to post these deals on Facebook or tweet them, but more and more they are expanding into using other platforms like Instagram and Pinterest.
- Look for free shipping and/or returns. Free shipping and free returns can relieve some of the burden carried by your wallet and even make room for experimentation. Instead of paying for shipping, maybe now you can afford that final piece or must-have accessory that completes the new outfit. A free return policy gives shoppers the flexibility to try new things or to purchase multiple sizes and see what fits. If you decide against it, just send it back for free or return it in store!
- Use the shopping cart trick. If you leave a desired item in your shopping cart, among the emails you receive reminding you to buy the item could be a deal or an offer. If you show heavy interest in a particular item, sometimes companies will go the extra mile to make it easier for you to purchase.
Now that you’re in the know when it comes to shopping online like an industry insider, read our blog on building the perfect capsule wardrobe here.