Black Friday is next week and kicks off holiday shopping. I thought it would be a great time to mention some of the ways I shop on a budget and save money all year long. If you know of any additional tips or tricks that you don’t see below, please mention in a comment. If there are more ways to save, I’d love to hear about them.
Check your favorite online shopping sites for their anniversary sale dates, holiday and seasonal sales dates, and put them in your calendar for next year. You don’t have to reserve holiday shopping for November and December. Purchase holiday gifts any time of year and stash them away until needed to eliminate stress and save money. You may end up with your shopping completely done before December arrives!
- Pay attention to the landing pages on shopping sites. For example, Abercrombie & Fitch, American Eagle, Victoria’s Secret and J. Crew provide sale information and even promotional codes right on their homepage. You can find these codes at the very top of the page or right in the center. There is always a ton of information on the homepage of a site that many people miss.
- Register your email on sites you regularly shop. Often times a pop-up will appear when the homepage loads requesting you to sign up and register your email. You will definitely get a coupon either immediately on that page or in your email inbox for 10-20% off your purchase. These stores usually continue to send you discount codes periodically as well as let you know of any upcoming sales or deals they are offering. If you are worried about receiving too many emails, sign up and get your code, then unsubscribe from their email list. I would only recommend staying subscribed to stores you shop frequently. (Or set up a separate email account strictly used for shopping ~ BONUS!)
- If stores offer free rewards programs, sign up! You will be amazed how quickly you will rack up rewards for discounts, free products, birthday gifts and coupons, sale previews, etc… Sephora VIB Rewards, Nordstrom Notes, Macy’s Rewards, and Plenti Points (also can be used at Macy’s) are among some of my favorite rewards programs that really do pay off all year long. And remember to use an app like Stocard or Wallet to electronically store your rewards cards on your phone. Back them up and never worry about losing them or taking up too much space in your wallet. You'll have more room for your money!
- Once you have some items in your shopping cart online, leave them be for a few hours up to a day. Often, stores will email you a reminder that you have not completed your purchase, and they’ll include a discount code with the reminder. Just make sure you are logged in to the site before adding items to your cart to ensure they remain. Some retail sites don’t send a discount code with reminder, but more do than don’t.
- Check your promotional emails from stores before you go into the mall, often you will have coupons for stores that you may visit. Have those emails queued up for in-store use. They are usually not limited to online use only.
- Check out Retail Me Not before making final purchases online for discount codes available or sale information. Also, be sure to download the Retail Me Not and Flipp apps for your phone to provide sales and coupons for shopping in your area. You can enter your zip code, select favorite stores and start saving money immediately.
- Visit and register here with Ebates. After signing up, you simply search for your store (and most stores participate) and click on it to start shopping. Ebates will tell you of any sales and the cash back award amount being offered for that day on your purchases. They will send you a check in the mail with your cash back savings from purchases made over that quarter. I have received checks close to $100. You can also earn up to $75/person through their referral program.
- For all of your coupons, electronic or paper versions, organize them and put reminders in your calendars noting expiration. This will prevent you from forgetting about them.
- Remember to enjoy the experience of finding that perfect gift for each special person in your life. Giving is the best part of the season and keeps the holiday spirit alive.
Happy shopping and holidays, all! - Jill - xoxo