|Save at least 200 dollars for 1000 dollars of shopping– that is 20% of the total money spent. With common sense and little prudence you can save hundreds of dollars on your holiday shopping bills. From my past experiences, I have chosen the five best practices that will give you the maximum savings. Peruse them, put them into action and email me your numbers on savings.
Gone are the days when there was no easy way to compare the price of a product at different stores other than visiting the stores. In this new era of cyber-shopping, there are numerous options to compare the price of a product at different locations of the globe. With very little effort, internet would find the best and right price, at the right store for you to save big bucks.
A few days back, I was shopping for a Mini DV camcorder in the price range of $500 to $700. An ardent internet shopper, I researched on brands, their prices and decided to buy a JVC GRD200 Mini DV camcorder. It is (may be “it was”) my belief that Amazon.com delivers the best products at the lowest prices (It does sell the best products, but not at the cheapest prices – at least in this case). As always, I was poised to buy the product from Amazon.
The comparison on the price of this product (via www.shopping.com) revealed that the product was sold as low as $299.00. With further research I understood that the price was indeed 299 US dollars. Delaying no more, I bought the camcorder from this seller instead of my first option – to save only $400.
As I look back, it still perplexes me how I saved $400 on a single buy. Does it not surprise you when you cut down 400 dollars on a single item? Perhaps the most important thing I did was comparing the prices for this product on www.shopping.com. It paid!
As a customer, your goal is to buy the best product at the cheapest price. Right?
You agree with me that it is not an intelligent idea to buy a product for 10 dollars when it is sold at 3 dollars less at the near by store. Neither do you accord it a savvy-shopping, to buy a product for 50 dollars when its price can be reduced by 10 dollars via the special store discount/coupon for the product.
Many of us do not realize the power of coupons. They hold tremendous potential for huge savings. Depending on how you use them, a coupon for 10 dollars for every 50 dollars would save 40 dollars over a period of month, assuming shopping once a week. Extrapolating, it is a 200 dollars savings over a 1000 dollar shopping-money. A typical Christmas shopping would amount to these numbers easily.
Although the example seems to be ideal, it resonates the ideas of retails stores like JC Penny or Sears, whose holiday-shopping-placards read “$10 off for every $50 shopping – JC Penny”, “$35 off for every $250 spent on electronics – Sears”. Get into the habit of using the coupons whenever possible to appreciate the savings accumulating into your pockets.
Depending on which state you buy the product from and which store you buy it from, you may or may not be charged a sales tax. If the sale is exempted the sales tax, it is a savings of 6 percent to 9 percent of total sale amount. Each seller clearly indicates if a sales tax would be applied on the sale in the geographical location. Thus, a little cautiousness would translate to a savings as high as 9 percent.
On the downside, you may have to pay for the shipping for the product which in most cases would compare less to the total of sales tax. And, by the way, due to the immense competition among the internet-sellers, you may end up making a bargain by not paying the taxes and not paying for the shipping either. Free shipping – as it is called, is common on many internet sites these days. For an item priced at $1000 you would save as much as $90 as sales tax savings – all you do is pick the right seller.
Planning on shopping near the beginning of the season will give you ample time to compare the prices on the product at various sellers. During this process, you will form a ballpark estimate of the item.
Let me remind you that the variation of the price can be any where from few dollars to few hundreds of dollars depending on the original price of the product, which makes it necessary for you to do this homework as to know the kind-of best price before you finalize on buying the product.
In addition, sellers usually hike the prices as the holiday season approaches so that they can display higher discount-numbers on their sale-advertisements. The higher discounts not only attract more customers but also compensate and compete the prices for the similar items at other stores. The fact is, even when you see greater discounts, you would not realize tangible savings around the holiday season unless you end up getting an early bird discount. I am somewhat reluctant to say this is true all the times, but is the case in several occasions.
Like in a workplace, collaborative shopping produces amazing results. You are not mandated to go to a shopping mall as a team, but exchanging ideas and information as a team would be advantageous.
Talk to your friends about their experience buying a similar item in the past. Gather information about the quality of the product, prices at different stores, seller reputation, etc that play a vital role on your buying-decision. Moreover, ask your friends and relatives if they could share any discount coupons. If preferred customer, they would share the coupons with you, which in turn would give you the opportunity to cut down on the final price. Beware that some sellers distribute non-transferable coupons in which cases you need to be creative to maximize your savings.
These ideas only scratch the surface of the iceberg. You can get innovative and creative to find the best deals on the market. Websites like www.techbargains.com, www.ecoupons.com, etc are some of the few sites that gather information about the greatest deals of the day. Internet has many such great money-saving ideas.
Armed with this information, I am sure you would be able to craft a good plan which would save you many dollars each shopping trip. If you are meticulous enough, you would save at least $200 for every $1000 dollars spent. I guarantee it. If you deny my proposition or have a different opinion write to me and I will help you see the potential of putting the above facts to work.
About the Author
Prasad Kopanati is the Vice President of XemanteX Inc. http://www.xemantex.com, an internet company offering language related services. You can reach him via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.