Today, in the second act of "Getting Great Stuff for Less", we're going to focus on tips for how to get the best deal and pay the lowest price for each purchase you make online. If you haven't already read last week's blog post about how to find the best rated stuff out there, check that out here.
Once you've found the perfect item online and it's time to buy it, the final step is to make sure you're paying as little as possible for it. With just a little effort, and perhaps some patience, you can potentially save hundreds of dollars each year.
Now let's save some money!
You know how if you let a faucet drip long enough, you can fill a bathtub? Ebates is a little like this. After installing the Ebates extension into your internet browser, Ebates can help you save money on most online purchases. Having this extension built right into the toolbar makes saving money ridiculously easy each time you buy. Whenever you are on a site where a discount is available, the little "E" in the top corner flashes, you click a button, and a portion of your purchases are returned to you in a quarterly "Big Fat Check" that is mailed to your house. While most websites give you between 2-5% back, there are other sites that offer up to 12%. The result? At the end of a quarter, my wife and I typically get a check for $15 to $20. Click here to sign up and get an automatic $10 when you start.
Before you buy something, how do you know what a good price is? Deciphering discounts requires context. 30% off at Kohl's is nothing but 30% off on Apple products is unheard-of. CamelCamelCamel is a great site that allows you to track the price of an item on Amazon as well as see the history of the pricing for that item. Knowing the pricing history on a specific item can not only tell you if the price is at an "all time low," but can also give you a sense of when the item has historically dropped in price. This second part may be helpful if you have time to spare before pulling out your wallet. Check out the image of pricing information for the Kindle fire to see an example of what CamelCamelCamel can offer. You can also set up price alerts to receive notifications for when an item has dipped below a specific price. This can ensure you get the best price before limited quantity items are sold out.
Near the end of almost any online purchase, you might notice a small field on the checkout screen titled Promo Code. In many cases, there are discounts on top of the regular discounts published by a given website, but you need to know a specific code for a lower price. So how does one find the treasure trove of these promotional codes? Short answer, Google. By simply Googling something like "Walgreens Photo promo code" or "Old Navy Promo Code" or "Lowes Promo Code" you'll find that there are a variety of sites with lists of codes you can try. The one I am usually directed towards and use most commonly is RetailMeNot. I find most other sites offer false codes or codes that have expired. RetailMeNot does a good job of publishing the success rate of each code as well as its expiration date . About half of the time, I find I can save an extra 10-20% or more on each purchase. In many cases, there are promotional codes that will, at the very least, get you free or expedited shipping. Try it for yourself, I think you'll be surprised how much you can save.
Bookmark This Link: http://amzn.to/29x8QA2
By regularly using this link as your primary way to access Amazon, a portion of all of your purchases will be applied to technology in the classroom at no extra cost to you. This is a simple way to support our class over and over again without much time or effort. Thanks for your help!
Common Sense Media
Helping Parents & Teachers Navigate a Digital World
A Mid-Year Checkup:
Tech Goals I've Met, Missed or Abandoned Completely
Shelf Reflection: What my classroom library says about the world and what I can do about it.
Looking Ahead, Blogging Forward
Teacher Approved Gifts for Kids
The Best Apps for Your Kid's New Device
Do Good with Great Deals
Is Amazon Prime Worth It?
Navigating the Election with Your Kids
Making the Most of 1 Classroom iPad
Apptoberfest: Google Photos
Apptoberfest: The Bible for Kids by YouVersion
Apptoberfest: IXL Math
Apptoberfest: Teach You Monster to Read
I Tried...I Failed...& You Can Too!
Let Go and Let Them
Oh the Place You'll Go: Using Green Screens in the Classroom
The Kindle Fire HD 8 - The iPad's Days are Numbered
A Fresh Start: Changes for the Year Ahead
Getting Great Stuff for Less - Part 2: Getting the Lowest Price
Getting Great Stuff for Less - Part 1 : Finding the Best Stuff
Stop Everything and Kahoot!
Coding in 2nd Grade with No Prep and $0
Kindles in the Classroom: A Year In Review