Four Things to do Before You Pay for an Online Order

Attention online shoppers! There are a lot of us who shop from the comfort of our own homes, but that doesn’t mean we’re all getting the best deals.

The next time you are on the checkout screen with an online merchant, don’t enter your credit card information until you check these four ways to save some of your hard-earned cash:

  1. Check your email account for special deals and discounts . Sign up with all your favorite merchants on a separate email account specifically for coupons and newsletters. When you are ready to shop, offers from merchants will be waiting in your inbox.
  2. Search for a coupon code. Enter the merchant’s name and “coupon code” or “discounts.” Websites for smart shoppers like RetailMeNot often post codes that will save you money with free shipping or dollars off your purchase. For more results, include the merchant’s official website or Facebook page in your search.
  3. Buy a previously purchased merchant gift card at a discount and use it instead of or with your credit card . Look for electronic gift cards, which can be even better than plastic because you can use them online as soon as you get the card number and PIN. Combine gift cards to get the amount you need. Check sites such as Cardpool that guarantee gift card values. (You take a risk when buying from individuals on auction sites like eBay.)
  4. Shopping on Add staples to get free shipping .’s free shipping offer kicks in when you add enough qualifying items to your cart. Just shy of the minimum purchase? Add items that you buy regularly—like toothpaste, deodorant, and shampoo—to bump your total into the free shipping range.

You can use all these money-saving strategies without driving from store to store for the best price! Try them out and see how much you can save.

(Any reference to a specific company, commercial product, process, or service does not constitute or imply an endorsement or recommendation by CashCourse or the National Endowment for Financial Education. These courses and related resources may be used only for nonprofit, noncommercial educational purposes. CashCourse makes every effort to keep the information in these courses current, but, over time, new developments as well as legislative and regulatory changes may date this material. If you discover inaccurate information, please contact us.)

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