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ARTICLE ARCHIVE: Save Time, Shop Online

Save Time, Shop Online!

Notice I didn't say BUY online, but SHOP online. A lot of people who don't spend much time on the internet are nervous about making a purchase from a website. (If you take some basic precautions, it's not really dangerous, but that's for another article.) However, you don't have to buy from a website to gain benefits from shopping there. Check out these benefits:



  1. Compare prices without leaving home.
    You'll be better prepared to shop for bargains if you've researched prices online before you visit the stores.

  2. Read product reviews.
    Sites like Amazon, Consumer Search, and Buzzilions make it easy to learn what buyers like/don't like about certain products.

  3. Search for gift ideas.
    Try using Google or your favorite search engine the next time you need a gift. If you're shopping for a birthday gift for a 3-year-old boy, try entering "gift for 3 year old boy" into the search box and see what comes up!

  4. Listen to song samples before buying a CD.
    Back to Amazon, for this one. From the "search" drop-down menu, select "Music." Then type the name of an artist, a CD, a song, or even a generic term such as "wedding." Click on any of the results and you'll probably be taken to a page that includes a list of songs with a "play" button. Happy listening!

  5. Preview books before buying.
    Barnes and Noble and Amazon offer a chance to read excerpts for most books. Or you can just enter the title of the book you want to preview and add the word "excerpt" to the search box.

  6. Visit online gift registries before buying that wedding or shower gift.
    It's become popular for brides to include the URL of stores where the engaged couple have registered for gifts. Even if you choose not to buy from their selected store, you can find out what's already been purchased and get ideas.

  7. Learn about less expensive alternatives to expensive products.
    If you'd always wanted a Hermes handbag or Rolex watch, but don't have the budget for such luxuries, type "Hermes bag alternative" or "Rolex alternative" into your browser's search section and see what pops up. You're likely to find several sites that will lead to to less expensive brands that mimic their more costly cousins.

  8. Did you misplace the latest sale flyer from your favorite store?
    Go online and download it. Many stores that send out those flyers can be found on the web, including Orscheln, Pamida, and True Value.

  9. Discover which products are the most popular.
    Yes, it's Amazon again, this time with its own bestseller lists in a variety of categories. Ebay offers a similar service for the products sold on their site. Or just type "most popular [insert category here] products" and take a look at the most promising sites.

  10. Check out suspicious offers.
    If you get a phone call from someone trying to sell you something...or if you see a product on television that looks interesting...or if you receive an email marketing a product (please don't open any attachments)...check it out on the internet before you shell out any money. Just type in "[insert name of product] reviews" and take a look at several of the resulting pages.


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