Five rewards apps to download if you want to save money this holiday season
The best ways to save money shopping online.
Hello, savvy savings shopper.
Holiday season is upon us.
Excited? We thought so.
Reservations? Us, too.
You might be ready for the festivities. Your bank account might not.
Holiday shopping is a pursuit for price — and not just any price. We’re talking deals, discounts, bargains — the lowest of low prices. Put away the scissors (safely, please). It’s time to take this discount dash into the 21st Century.
There’s a fair chance you’ve shopped online this year. On Black Friday, for example, store visits fell by 52%. But shopping at U.S. retailer websites rose by 22%.
Chances are you’re filling a virtual cart instead of a real one. Your coupon clippings from Sunday’s newspaper? They’re not quite as useful online. But that’s not to say the discount hunt is over. It’s only just begun.
Shopping online is convenient. Saving money online should be, too. It’s a priority to find the best deals online. For some, it’s a way of life. Fortunately, technology can help.
You can save money shopping online with a few quick downloads. There are a number of rewards apps and browser extensions that do the coupon clipping for you. That’s right, online shopping made both easier and cheaper. Say goodbye to full-price. Bid adieu to hours spent sifting for the perfect discount. Apps like Honey ensure you the best price on the internet.
Don’t click buy without these browser extensions.
Here we have gathered our five favorite money-saving extensions and rewards apps to help save you money this holiday shopping season.
More than 100 million households have no investments.
Tell me if this sequence sounds familiar:
You’re at Pizza Hut’s online checkout.
- Open Google in a new tab.
- Search Pizza Hut coupon codes.
- Browse through the endless number of results.
- Test a handful of codes — half of them expired — until one works.
A bit tedious, wouldn’t you say?
Honey automatically searches the web for coupon codes while you shop. It’s one of the most popular money-saving tools, and it’s clear to see why. Honey works at 30,000 retailers (and counting).
Honey boasts that it saves users an average of $126 per year.
Instead of searching for coupon codes yourself, Honey does this work for you. Honey also tests coupon codes, so the greatest discount is applied.
But Honey also does more than finds coupons. Honey tracks price history and can alert you when a specific item’s price has dropped.
Another perk? Honey users earn Honey Gold. It’s a rewards program that gives you a percentage back at some retailers. Honey Gold functions on its own. Users can redeem Gold for a gift card to their favorite retailer.
The cost? Totally free.
Rewards apps are everywhere.
It’s hard to distinguish one from the next. Lolli is one that caught our eye.
Lolli is a loyalty rewards program that turns shoppers into investors. Similar to cashback rewards, Lolli gives you a portion back after you shop. But in place of money, Lolli gives you Bitcoin.
To cash in on the cryptocurrency, just shop. As you shop, you earn more Bitcoin.
With Lolli, ordinary people can easily dip their toes in Bitcoin. Lolli is still new. So far, Lolli has partnered with 750 merchants, including Walmart (where there’s up to 3.5% back).
Lolli receives a percentage of the sales at partner sites. It then gives you a portion of its commission in the form of Bitcoin. Merchants pay Lolli, and Lolli turns around and pays you in Bitcoin. Its extension notifies you when Bitcoin rewards are available.
Oh, and by the way, Lolli is free to use.
Rakuten knows you shop online. And it knows you’d like a little money back in your pocket.
So, Rakuten does just that. It pays you to shop online.
Shopping rewards apps are plentiful. But Rakuten stands out like a sixth-grader in a line of third-graders waiting to be picked for kickball. It’s the premier choice.
Rakuten’s calling card is cashback rewards. Formerly eBates, Rakuten acts as a portal to thousands of retailers. It funnels customers to online retailers, who then pay Rakuten a commission. But Rakuten doesn’t hold onto that commission. It splits it, and shares a kickback with its users. Rakuten pays out cash-back balances through PayPal or check every three months.
You shop. You score.
Bonus features? You bet. Like Honey, Rakuten finds and applies coupons, and compares prices as well. But it’s main feature is cashback rewards.
You’re already shopping. You may as well receive a kickback for it.
Rakuten works with name brand retailers, like Walmart, Target, and Macy’s. Plus, it’s free to use.
Capital One Shopping
Ever have a gut feeling there’s a better deal around the corner?
If you answered yes, you need Capital One Shopping. It’s a price comparison tool designed to show you the lowest price, shipping costs included.
Capital One Shopping is intuitive. The extension calculates shipping costs as it scans for the best deal. It’ll show you options, with the total cost for each. Then, you chose.
But first, it needs to know some specifics — like your address and if you have an Amazon Prime account. Set up takes less than a minute.
Other bonuses? Capital One Shopping automatically searches for relevant coupon codes. Cash back rewards? It has that, too. Even more perks? The extension also shows you what online stores have a product in stock. That’s a nice touch with the holiday season in full-swing. Furthermore, it’ll notify you if there’s a price drop on a product you’re interested in.
Capital One Shopping is a convenient one-stop shop, and ranks as one of our favorites. By the way, it’s free to everyone — no Capital One account necessary.
Expert shoppers know, it’s not only about where you shop. It’s about when you shop.
Prices fluctuate. We love it when they drop. But feelings are different when they raise. There are few worse feelings than to buy and see a better price a week later.
Studying price changes is a chore that takes the fun out of shopping. Usefully, one tool does all the homework for you.
Say hello to The Camelizer — a useful tool with a unique name.
The Camelizer by CamelCamelCamel has nothing to do with camels. But it has a lot to do with price-tracking on Amazon.
The extension shows price history without requiring you to leave an Amazon product page. This can help you get a sense for any given product’s regular price. Plus, you can see if the price is abnormally high or in fact a bargain.
Even more, it’ll show you if a price fluctuates often. Also, you can set up price drop notifications. It will email you when the item’s price drops to the number you set.
Have confidence when you buy with The Camelizer. This extension is free, just so you know.
Savings tips for the smart individual
Technology makes shopping and saving hassle-free.
But for the best savings, stack these tools one on top of the next. Some extensions include features that overlap the other. But that’s not always the case. Plus, some perform better in key areas than the competition. Furthermore, some extensions have partnerships with merchants that others do not.
There’s no limit to how much you can save. Likewise, there’s no limit to how many extensions you might use. Your only cost is a few minutes to download the extension. You have nothing to lose. Try one, or try them all. Using these rewards apps, you’re sure to save money shopping online.
Holidays are expensive. Holiday sales this year are expected to exceed prior years, as families look to spend more and celebrate the holidays during tough times. Families believe they owe it to themselves to have a better-than-normal holiday — and that comes with a price tag.
For more money-saving advice, visit our blog.