Cutting down on our spending is a great way to help build up a buffer in case of a rainy day, or to help us save for a holiday, a new car, or a new home. There are many ways to save cash and live frugally that are tried and tested, passed down from generation to generation. Things like cutting coupons out of newspapers and magazines and saving leftovers for another meal.
But today, there are many new ways we can cut back on our spending thanks to the internet. The worldwide web has given us many innovations, including online shopping, video streaming, and social media. It is possible to utilize all of these to our advantage.
Shopping online is much more convenient than getting dressed up, traveling to the shops, and searching for the things we want. Thanks to the internet we can buy just about anything with the click of just a few buttons and have it delivered the next or even the same day.
Shopping online also makes it easier to compare the prices of different retailers. You can do this manually by going from website to website, or you can use a service that does the hard work for you.
Google Shopping and Kelkoo are both great examples of product comparison sites. Just type in what you want to buy and they will return a list of online shops that stock it, along with their price.
You can also use sites like CamelCamelCamel to set up price alerts and see the historical prices of products on major shopping sites like Amazon. This means you can not only compare the price from different stores, but the price from different times of the year to see when you can save the most money.
Watch TV and Movies for Free
If you’re looking to cut the cost of your cable bill, then the internet gives you a myriad of options. If you don’t yet subscribe to a video streaming service, then you may find that you can completely ditch cable and just use one (or a few) of those instead.
A Netflix subscription starts at $8.99 per month and other companies charge similar amounts. Most also offer a free trial, so you won’t even pay anything for the first few weeks.
You’ll likely find your taste is better catered for online too. Niche streaming services like PokerStars TV and BroadwayHD both offer content tailored to their specific genres, meaning you can watch hours of shows you know you’re going to love.
Voucher Codes, Coupons, and Cashback
We’ve nearly all used a coupon or voucher at some point in our lives, though traditionally they were always printed on a piece of card or paper. Today though, it’s possible to use the internet to find vouchers and coupons that can be used when shopping in store and online.
Many online retailers offer coupon codes as a way to encourage savvy shoppers to buy from them over a competitor. If it’s a product you were going to buy anyway, it means you’ll save money for almost no work.
Whenever you’re planning to make a purchase, just do a quick search for “SHOP NAME voucher code” and see what options are returned.
If there is no voucher available, you may be able to earn some cashback instead. Several cashback sites have sprung up over recent years, offering a rebate to consumers who first visit their website before making a purchase.
The cashback site earns an affiliate commission from the online shop and then shares it with the customer. Sometimes (but not always), it’s also possible to double up and combine cashback with a voucher code, though you should only do this if the cashback site lists the coupon code itself.
If you’re making a purchase in a physical store, then you can also find coupons that you can download and print out to get scanned at the checkout. Alternatively, some retailers now let you scan coupons from your smartphone instead.