Being sick is expensive! Trying to get healthy is even more expensive; medications, supplements, vitamins, special products, special foods… expensive! This is where yet again the internet (specifically internet shopping) can be a life saver no matter how sick or functioning you are. It gives us independence to find what we want & need but it also can help you save a lot of money! Yes, a lot! I admit I’m addicted to the savings game of internet shopping. In fact if you told me to keep my internet connection I had to shave my head, I’d be rocking the Natalie Portman Vendetta do by dawn!
Since the Vendetta do isn’t necessary at the moment, instead I’ll tell you the tricks I’ve learned to save money while getting your Internet surf on!
Tip 1: (I’ll start with my favorite tip this time!) EBATES
EBATES is by far the best thing I’ve ever done on the Internet. No one believes how great it is until they try it for themselves (then they always yell at me for not “forcing” them to do it sooner!)
-Go to Ebates & sign up. It takes 1 minute.
-The premise is simple: go to Ebates first, click on the name of the store you want to shop at, Ebates directs you there & then gives you a percentage of your total purchase price back! Here’s an example:
-Want to buy something from Drugstore.com? Go to Ebates & type in: Drugstore (or search their A-Z list). If Ebates has an agreement with that store it will pop up & tell you how much money you will get back by clicking on Ebates first! Ex: Drugstore.com 6% back.
-Click: “Shop Now”. Now you are on Drugstore.com, just shop away! (Because you go to Ebates first, they create a tracking number. When you place your order 6% of what you spend goes into your Ebates bank account! Every few months Ebates will send you what they call the “big fat check” (yes it is big & hopefully it will be fat!) It’s truly that simple, no tricks, no games. So far I’ve received checks totaling $213 & another patient I forced to sign up has saved a bundle as well!
Mini Tip: Ebates isn’t just stores, they have car rentals, hotels & even a lot of small specialty shops! It’s always worth the 30 seconds to see if where you are spending money has an agreement with Ebates or if another store that sells your item, gives a higher percentage back!
Mini Tip 2: The most exciting news with Ebates is that they now have an agreement with Amazon.com! Their biggest drawback was always that they didn’t offer any money back from Amazon, the one place most of us order from. Now, up to 3% back can be yours!
Mini Tip 3: Ebates will give you $5 for every new member you recommend signs up for Ebates!
Tip #2: COUPON CODES – all the savings, none of the clipping!
This is my second favorite tip & has saved me more money than I could ever count. Have you ever been checking out online & noticed a box that says; “coupon” or “discount code”. You may have thought (as I did in the beginning) it was for the special promotions they must only send the cool kids. The truth is, coupon codes are out there just waiting for you to find them & they can save you a ton of moola!
-Go to any search engine & type in the name of the store you’re shopping from & “coupon codes” or “discount codes”. Many top coupon code sites will pop up such as Coupon Cabin or Retail Me Not.
Mini Tip: Because companies know coupon codes are so popular now, they often just list sales the sites are already having. Ignore those! You want key words such as: “Free Shipping with Coupon Code SummerFun” or “20% off any $50 order”.
Mini Tip 2: If you do find an amazing coupon code at a store that you order from a lot, consider stocking up. Ex: If you are ordering Vega Protein Powder (which can be expensive) & they are having an amazing sale plus you found an awesome coupon code, consider buying extra to save even more money.
Mini Tip 3: Have you ever been on Facebook & wondered why your friend “liked” Harry’s Crackers? It’s probably because many companies will give you great coupons & special deals just for “liking” their page on Facebook!
Tip #3: SHIPPING & HANDLING
Have you noticed how many online stores have jacked up the shipping & handling prices to the point it’s ridiculous? You can order a tiny pair of earrings & feel like you are paying enough shipping costs to haul an elephant across Texas!
-S&H prices are always something to check out before you spend all your time finding what you need at that store. Nothing annoys me more than realizing (after I spent 30 minutes finding what I need) the S&H is twice the cost of the item!
-Many places are catching on that low cost shipping is a huge draw! Zappos has free shipping & free returns. While Overstock.com (a great place to find deals) offers $2.99 flat rate shipping, even if you do order that elephant!