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How to find the best online deals



By Sarah Klein

Designer clothing discount retailer Gilt Groupe blasts out an e-mail every day around noon. In the following hour, the site is visited by an average of 100,000 shoppers. “It might as well be the most crowded store in New York,” to quote from a profile of the site by New York magazine.

Bargain-hunters have always had an eye for a good deal like those on Gilt Groupe, but during economic hard times it seems more of these “deals and steals” web sites are popping up, offering not just designer clothes but everyday savings on a whole range of goods and services.

Many operate by e-mail blast. Shop It To Me, another clothing retailer, trolls sites for the type of clothes, shoes or accessories you tell it you’re interested in. You can even personalize the e-mails to include only brands or designers you like, and how frequently you receive the alerts.

But not all of them are about fashion. In fact, many can be very useful to parents, like Groupon, which is now available in hundreds of cities. They will send a daily deal e-mail to registered users for all sorts of services. Users then have a limited amount of time to pledge to buy the deal, like the recent $39 one-month membership to Gymboree – a $222 value! A set number of people have to buy the deal before it’s activated. For the Gymboree deal it was 150 and a whopping 1,530 signed-up!

Some sites prefer to spread the word via Twitter. ShareMyDeal, whose slogan is “shop differently,” is a community of bargain-hunters. Registered users post deals they find and then the site sends out four to six tweets a day hawking the discounts.

Bargainsavers on Twitter is another great resource, posting daily deals by category, like cleaning or pet supplies, beauty products, baby accessories, and groceries.

If you haven’t joined the Twitter bandwagon, you can check out sites like CheapTweet.com and CouponTweet.com, which aggregate the best deals that people are currently sharing on the micro-blogging site.

Of course, there are also simple coupon sites where you can print a coupon to take to a store or enter a promotional code for online shopping. FabulousSavings.com, RedPlum.com, and Coupons.com are great destinations for everyday shopping.

If you’re looking for specific deals on stuff for kids and babies, you should check out BabyCheapskate.com and CouponMom.com. The latter is especially good for groceries and dining, and you can even sign-up for weekly coupon e-mails or deal alerts for specific items on your shopping list.

But perhaps the most convenient of all – and probably the future of smart shopping – are coupons delivered right to your phone. Websites like Yowza are all about mobile delivery. You can have deals and coupon codes sent to your smartphone from over 10,000 retailers. All you do is show the coupon to the cashier. You never have to worry about leaving the coupons at home or in the car, or forgetting about them until long after the expiration date. And with no paper, it’s actually an earth-friendly way to spend.

So what are you waiting for? Start saving today!

Do you have other bargain web site or a favorite money-saving retailer that’s not listed above? Share them with The Online Mom!



Comments:
Comment by Cindy, posted 2/5/2011, 4:32 PM:

http://momdealsonline.com is my new favorite, updated frequently.
Comment by dana, posted 10/1/2010, 7:36 AM:

My favorite way to save money on-line is PriceBlink. It's a browser add-on that instantly compares prices for a product you're viewing, tells you if it's the lowest price or if not, where you can find it cheaper and it includes shipping charges! PriceBlink provides amazon user reviews and coupons - instantly, as you shop. When you're not shopping, it stays hidden. It helps me shop fast and smart - no bouncing from site to site. firefox version: http://bit.ly/aftdau
Comment by Jeanine, posted 7/19/2010, 9:24 AM:

Here is another great money saving site-- www.icoulduseadeal.blogspot.com
HOME OF FOUND MONEY and deals
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