Let’s be honest, we all like to receive a discount (if not a freebie), or have those savings numbers shine in front of our eyes, don’t we?
This is very true for me. I’m not going to brag that I am coupon savvy or that I reserve certain hours of my schedule to clip coupons. As a matter of fact, I used to do it when smartphones were nonexistent or a high-priced commodity, and the only option companies had was to send coupons through the mail.
For me, those times are long gone. Nowadays, the new technology is making easier for us to shop, research products, and—even better—to save. Many retailers have reward or loyalty programs, or they partner with different sites to offer significant savings to consumers.
Because we are in the season of spending, there is nothing better than to find ways to save while going shopping. Here I’m offering some of my favorite tools. Take a look:
What is Ibotta?
Ibotta is a program that allows you to redeem receipts and get cash with your lifetime earnings. You can also refer friends and form a “team,” which will increase your ability to receive bonuses, and therefore, boost your earnings.
Ibotta has a partnership with different store and brands in various categories such as groceries, pharmacy, clothing, restaurants and bars, and mobile shopping, to name a few.
The way it works is you shop at one of the many stores in their list (trust me, the list is big), scan the barcode for the qualified rebate, and capture a picture of the receipt. Some stores are even receipt-free (such as Best Buy), and you can verify the purchase during the check-out. With that, you accumulate earnings.
The other beautiful aspect about Ibotta is if you refer someone and the person signs up with your referral code and makes the first qualified purchase, you both receive cash—you receive $5 and your friend $10.
Once you reach the threshold to redeem ($20), you can choose the way you want to receive your money: gift card or PayPal cash. If your household has more than three family members, including a child at home, or you are the type who like to throw parties and buy a lot in the beer and wine category, you should reach the limit quickly.
In my household, it is only my husband and me, and I was able to reach considerable savings on my most‑shopped stores. And this does not include referrals.
RetailMeNot is one of my favorites. The app sends you coupons from a variety of retailers.
Once you download the app from the Apple or Android store, you set your preferences—including your favorite stores—and let the app find your localization. Then you are ready to go. When you drive through a mall, plaza, or retailer, the app will notify you of savings. You can also have access through your desktop, but you will be restricted to savings only in your neighborhood (or the location set on your computer).
Whatever your choice is, this app is a must‑have, especially during the holiday season, because you can maximize your savings with all types of coupons.
For instance, one time I was able to apply a 20% coupon to a Barnes and Noble purchase. Another time, I got a free drink at Starbucks, which offers this special once in a while during a certain time of the day.
There is all this and much more, but please note that coupons and promotions vary from merchant to merchant.
ShopSavvy app is another winner. Have you ever second‑guessed buying a product because you wanted to make sure you could find it somewhere cheaper? It happened with me all the time, but once I found out about ShopSavvy, there were no regrets anymore.
You download, set your preferences, and scan the barcode for the items you want to compare. For instance, you go to Best Buy to buy a scanner, but you want to know whether you can find a better deal somewhere else; you just use the app to scan the barcode. It will give you all the available prices within the geographic area you chose.
The whole concept is clever, and the app is neat and easy to use. Besides helping you to save money, now it also gives you a chance to receive cash back.
In my case, the app saves me big bucks, especially when I have my family from abroad visiting and shopping.
Ebates is a favorite of many bloggers such as Mom Resource. Why? Because you can get cash back from over 2000 stores in diverse categories—Amazon offers up to 10%, Barnes and Noble up to 2%, and the list goes on. And you can also increase your earnings and make extra bucks with referrals as well.
The secret is that you will do your regular shopping, but instead of going straight to the merchant website, you shop on your favorite site through Ebates. Once your purchase is confirmed, you see the credits/cash for the qualified purchase in your account.
Those are just some of my top choices. I am sure you have another favorite that was not listed. If so, leave a comment and let us know. But for now, until next time, when I will talk about my savings.
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