In times of recession, saving money is more important than ever. However, you have more important things to do than spend your Sunday afternoon flipping and snipping through the newspapers’ coupons. So what on earth is a savvy shopper to do? Online coupon sites, promising easy savings, are appearing up all over the Internet. Here, is our guide to how you can make saving a cinch with online coupons.
Perform a quick Google search for online coupon sites, and you’ll be inundated with multiple options. There are differences between them, though, so make sure you do your homework before you select a site.
No membership fees
Be wary of sites that charge. There’s no point of spending time looking up coupons if you have to pay a hefty membership fee to join an online coupon site. Plenty of online coupons sites are free of charge, so there is no need for you to frequent the one’s that aren’t.
Many free sites will offer the opportunity to sign up for discount updates which will be sent straight to your email, as well as access to other opportunities, such as specific weekly savings at shops in your area. MyVoucherCodes allows you to sign up for a free newsletter, with the promise of at least £100 in savings every week. And here’s a tip: If you don’t want your regular inbox stuffed with coupons, create a separate email account just for savings.
Check the coupon sites and your shop’s mailer before you make your grocery list as they could inspire your menu for the week. Try to create your grocery list based upon the coupons available that week and sale items.
If you’re looking for something specific, check out a few online coupon sites first — and even the brand’s own site — before paying full price. MySupermarket lists top supermarket offers, compares prices and make savings both on-line and in-store.
Beyond the basket
Besides saving on your grocery basket, online coupon sites can provide opportunities to trim costs on all sorts of everyday things from yoga classes to restaurants. Some sites also give saving opportunities at discount shops.
If you are one of those try-it-before-you-buy-it types, some online coupon sites offer free samples of products like nappies, and baby and pet food. Try visiting Freebie Site UK to see what you can pick up for free.
Check the expiration date
Just because it’s an online coupon doesn’t mean its going to last forever. Some coupons don’t have an expiration date, but some do, so make sure you check before you check out.
Coupons in collaboration
Once you’ve put together all of your online coupons, notch up your savings by paying close attention to your shop’s in-house coupons and sales.
Online coupon sites unite!
The wonderful thing about many of the online coupon sites is that they often work together — so one coupon site could lead you to another that can offer you additional savings.
There’s an app for that
Coupons can even come to you through your smart phone. BlackBerry’s MobiQpons sends coupons to your phone from all sorts of places within 10-mile of your home. iPhone’s Coupon Sherpa is a free app that sends you coupons and allows you to create a list of shop favourites, and the coupons can be scanned by optical scanners as well.
Do you want to be environmentally friendly but still save bucks? Forget clipping coupons or even printing them out from your computer. Instead, take a look sites that allow you to load electronic coupons to your supermarket loyalty card. The discounts will then be deducted automatically from your total at the till when you are at the check out, and coupons that you load but don’t use are good until they expire. Talk about making easy savings!