Life Hacks to Save Money While Shopping
This challenge is aimed at helping you find ways to save money when you shop, both in-store and online.
Ever spot a pair of shoes you adore online, but don’t want to pay full price and don’t have a coupon? This challenge may be able to solve that problem. Read through the challenge and try one (or more!) of the “hacks” to save money. Then, report back and let us know how much you saved, or tell us a new “hack” of your own!
Create a new email address.
Most stores now ask for your email address when you checkout or offer a discount if you sign up to receive company emails. But, weekly (or even daily) emails can end up costing you more money, as it makes it harder to resist the temptation to spend when you see an ad in your Inbox. Instead of giving stores your regular email address, create an email account to be used solely for online shopping. This will make it easier to exercise self-control and will also keep your inbox free from emails you don’t want to label as spam.
Shop with a “coupon” app.
Before making a purchase, check RetailMeNot or Ebates to see if there’s a coupon available, or the possibility of getting cash back on your purchase. Apps are also useful for stores such as Target, which offer store-specific coupons only available via their app (Target has Cartwheel, Walmart has Savings Catcher, etc.). A few examples of websites are:
- SavingStar.com – This app can help you save money on groceries.
- Coupons.com – Offers an app where you can link coupons to your grocery store’s loyalty card.
- CouponCabin.com – They have a blog which features money-saving tips, found here.
- Groupon.com – Find discounts on everything from local restaurants to spa treatments or vacations.
Leave items in your shopping cart.
When shopping online at a specific store, create an online profile. Then, add the items you’d like to purchase to your shopping cart, but don’t check out just yet. When you leave that website without completing your purchase, there’s a good chance you’ll receive a coupon via email within the next day or two.
Sleep on it.
At the end of the day, if you’re unsure about a purchase, hold off a day or two. Ask yourself, “Would I buy this if it weren’t on sale?” It’s easy to get caught up in the frenzy of “This item is 70% off but only for the next hour only!” This is a sales tactic, so if it isn’t something you’ve been planning to purchase, step away from the laptop (or leave the store), sleep on it, and see if you’re still thinking about it tomorrow. Saving money with coupons can feel rewarding, but if you get caught up in trying to snag that time-sensitive deal, you could end up spending more money in the long run.
An email address you can use to sign up for store coupons, or a smartphone for downloading apps you can use to save money.
What other “hacks” do you have for saving money when you shop? What apps do you use to find coupons? This could be a discussion topic at your next alumnae association meeting, or a topic of conversation for a Sister “coffee date.”
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