According to research done by Business Insider, online shopping has surpassed shopping in physical stores in early 2019 for the first time in American history. Are brick-and-mortar stores going to make it? It is left to be seen. At the same time, online shops are inventing new ways to remain competitive with physical stores and with their online competitors. There is no doubt anymore that the advantages of online shopping are various and numerous. That is why we have searched for all the ways shopping online saves you money and gathered some quite useful advice for you in one place. Feel free to read on.
Saving money with online shopping
Out of the many benefits of online shopping, saving money is one of the most important to many of us. Online shopping owes that to lower expenses of running a business compared to physical shops. Most of the revenue and savings they acquired that way they reinvest by offering lower prices, discounts, free shipping or other perks. But simply shopping online is not the only method to save money. Here are several more:
- Cashback sites
- Warehouse Club Sites
- Initiatives for Online Shopping
- Shopping Cart Abandonment
- Savings on gas, parking and most importantly - your time.
Method #1 - Cashback Websites
Whether you're purchasing popular CarryMore shopping bags or some other product, if the online store is associated with a cashback site, you can expect a small refund now and then. Cashback sites function through affiliate links, where online stores pay the cashback site for every purchase a customer makes through them. A part of the revenue cashback site gets from the online store is returned to the customer. It's truly a win-win-win situation. The only thing you are asked is to register on a cashback website. Then, choose an online store from their extensive list and purchase something. After the transaction, you can expect a percentage of the money that the cashback site earned, back. Furthermore, you can install a shopping app that will notify you of cash-back deals and other sign-up bonuses.
Method #2 - Warehouse Club Sites
Aside from the internet, online shops can also thank moving and logistics companies such as movers101.com that offer affordable storage services. Available 24/7, these storage units serve as easily accessible warehouses. They help online stores run their business from afar and connect with carriers. As with brick-and-mortar stores, it pays off greatly if you purchase in large quantities, to you and the shop, too. Not only does the shop save from reducing their running costs, but also the discounts you will get on items you buy in bulk can be significant. Moreover, these warehouse club sites offer certain products only for online purchases. Some of them are big-name physical shops trying to remain competitive and so far, succeeding. Buying in bulk makes sense only for products you and your family need frequently and in large quantities. Such products are baby diapers and wipes or pet food, for example.
Method #3 - Initiatives for Online Shopping
You have probably noticed by now that many brick-and-mortar stores offer initiatives for online purchases. They are directing their customers to purchase from their website instead of their physical shop. These initiatives differ, but most stores tend to waive sales tax or shipping charges. Many offer online promotions on their websites, so bear in mind that you should make savings on little things. Imagine purchasing a BAAM drain cleaner or Superlight portable rechargeable fluorescent lamp at a discount because you have received an email coupon simply by signing up for the store's newsletter. Shopping online saves you money, but only if you use these initiatives to purchase what you truly need. There is nothing sweeter than acquiring a quality product at a discount.
Method #4 - Shopping Cart Abandonment
Online shoppers are taking the game to the next level. Intentionally leaving the items in the shopping cart for a while may eventually trigger a promotion from the store. Online shops apply this marketing tactic to bring customers back to their website and customers use it to - get a discount. However, it means that you will have to wait for a while to get a better price. Even so, patience does pay off. Moreover, some shops will notify you once the price has dropped while your item is sitting in the shopping basket. Due to various operational reasons, prices change often and there's no reason to miss out a chance to purchase for less. Some online shops even employ the lowest price guarantee. It means that, at the moment of shipping, you will pay the lowest price your item had between ordering and the moment of dispatch.
Method #5 - Time is Money
Comparison-shopping saves money, which is beyond any doubt. However, walking for hours and browsing offers in physical shops is not something most people can afford. Namely, mothers with little children, seniors or people who work in shifts, can't spare time or effort or both for regular shopping. Not to mention the need for cars in shopping these days, especially for bigger purchases. Lack of parking space, traffic congestion and an undeniable waste of gas are some of the biggest obstacles. Purchasing online saves you time, and time is money. Moreover, it allows you to stay in the comfort of your home while you do it and keep an eye on other important things.
Shopping online saves you money through the purchase of last-season and refurbished items, as well. While physical stores need to clear their inventory to accept the items for the new season, online stores are not under pressure. It allows them to keep their items online until they find their buyers. These items are pre-owned, usually returned because they were bought by mistake, as duplicates or they simply weren't as expected. Sometimes they get scratched in transport and as such are not acceptable to original buyers. However, these items are still being offered for sale afterward, at a lower price. Those who don't mind owning an item with the cosmetic defect can save tens, if not hundreds, of dollars. So-called warehouse deals are unique and sell out quickly, thus, signing up for notifications saves your money, too.