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Over the past 10 years, Americans have increased online shopping by over $100 billion. By the first quarter of 2019, Americans spent a total of $137.7 online. Today, 43% of Americans are regular online shoppers.
In order to become a savvy online shopper, you need to know where to find any chance to save money. Understanding the ropes of using coupons with online shopping can help you save big. If you’re unfamiliar with the intricacies of online coupons, however, you might miss out on opportunities.
Keep reading to discover the seven tips you need to save money on items you find online. With these tips, you can put money back into your pocket instead of unintentionally overspending.
Make the most of your next online shopping spree with these seven tips!
1. Learn the Basics
The first step when using coupons with online shopping is to understand the basics. For example, you’ll need to know how to:
- Understand a company’s coupon policy
- Power-up savings by doubling or tripling the value of a manufacturer’s coupon
- Read coupons and its fine print
What does it mean to double or triple a coupon? When stores offer these opportunities, it means they’re doubling or tripling the face value of a coupon. In many of these instances, there are usually exclusions and limitations applied to the discount.
You’ll need to know the specific store’s policy to determine their exclusions.
Some coupons, on the other hand, have the acronym “DND/DNT” in the fine print. This acronym means the coupon won’t receive a doubled or tripled value.
What happens when the coupon savings are more than the product price? In most cases, the store will adjust the value of the coupon down. One exception is Walmart; they apply the excess to other items in your cart or give you cashback.
Do you pay sales tax on the total before or after applying the coupon?
That depends on where you live. For most states, you’ll pay the sales tax on the total before the coupon is applied. You’ll need to check your state’s laws to know for sure.
Can you use a coupon on every item you purchase? The amount you save, as well as the number of items you need to purchase to apply the savings, depends on the coupon’s fine print. You can only use a single coupon on each scannable item.
Once you understand these basics of using coupons online, you can start saving.
2. Know Where to Look
Before you can start to save money on items you find online, you’ll need to know where to look for coupons.
First, look for manufacturer coupons, which companies release for the products they sell. Most of these coupons are for in-store purchases only, but there are also instances when you can use them online.
You can find manufacturer coupons:
- In your weekly newspaper
- In magazines
- The manufacturer’s website
- Websites such as Coupons, SmartSource, Redplum, and Coupon Database
Make sure to sign up for newsletters from your favorite brands. They’ll often email you weekly or monthly coupons that you can use. They’ll also inform you of items on sale for the week, giving you more opportunities to save.
There are also a few phone apps you can use, including:
- Check out51
These apps offer rebate offers. You’ll need to purchase a specific number of items, then upload your receipt. In return, these apps will post funds in your account, allowing you to save money in the future.
If your favorite brands have their own store app, make sure to download those, too. Apps such as Sprouts and Target Cartwheel offer exclusive coupons you can only find through their site or app. Make sure to keep an eye out for clearance deals, too.
3. Read the Fine Print
In order to make the most of shopping with coupons, you need to know how to read coupons, first. Even if you have a coupon in hand, you might not get the chance to use it at the store you want to.
First, look for the coupon quantity requirements. This will list how many items you’ll need to purchase before you can redeem the coupon.
Some coupons use tricky wording, too. For example, you might see “Redeemable at” versus “Redeemable only at.”
If the coupon reads “Redeemable at” and names the store, you can use the coupon anywhere coupons are accepted. In these cases, the manufacturer was paid to include the store’s logo on the coupon. That way, the store can entice more people to shop there.
Coupons with the words “Redeemable only at” are only for use at a particular store. However, you can ask if the store accepts competitor coupons; they might still accept it.
Don’t forget to check your coupon expiry dates, too. You’ll want to know when a coupon expires to avoid missing an opportunity to use it.
4. Know the Store’s Policies
Each store has their own coupon policies. Make sure to check the national and regional store coupon policies for your favorite stores. Otherwise, the store you shop at online might not redeem your coupon.
5. Get Organized
By 2023, over 300 million Americans will become online shoppers. If you want to become a savvy online shopper, it’s important to keep your coupons organized.
Consider creating files on your computer for coupons based on the industry, store, or different themes. For example, you might have one coupon folder for groceries and another for clothes. Keeping your coupons organized will help you find what you need when you need it.
6. Get Your Coupons in Order
When applying coupons in-person, you’ll need to hand the cashier your coupons in a specific order. Otherwise, you might not save as much as expected.
Some online websites know how to automatically apply your coupons to ensure you receive the most savings. Others calculate your savings based on the order you apply the coupons in. Make sure to figure out which order will give you the most savings before you apply your coupons.
7. Stack Coupons
Each time you shop online, try to use one manufacturer’s coupon and one store coupon. Stacking coupons this way can help you generate more savings.
Stash Up Savings Using Coupons with Online Shopping
Ready start saving and becoming a savvy online shopper? With these seven tips, you can start using coupons with online shopping easily! As you save money, you’ll have more to spend at all your favorite stores!
Searching for more deals? Check out our Coupon Codes today!