One of the favorite pass time of the world is ‘shopping’, and you will notice that it is more so in the US. As famous comedian once stated ‘US is a giant shopping mall’, he was not exaggerating. Apart from the traditional shopping at mall, online shopping is many times convenient and cheaper.
If you want to save money and time – online shopping is the way to go. In the realms of online shopping, the options can be broadly categorized into two buckets:
1) Regular shopping sites.
2) Limited time deal sites
Regular shopping sites:
1) Amazon.com: People kid me saying that I am Amazon confidant and I have no qualms about that claim. Amazon is awesome, especially if you are their prime member, with its 2 day free shipping, access to tons of movies/TV shows, unlimited music streaming, Prime membership pays for itself. The biggest perk though is Amazon’s unbeatable prices (save deal sites to be discussed later). They sell everything (almost) and they sell everything for less.
2) Walmart.com: I am not a big fan of Walmart but that shouldn’t let me discount this ‘giant’ of a store with amazing network of shops all over the US. They recently started Site to Shop, wherein you can shop for stuff on their website and pick it up at one of the stores nearby. You also have the option to get it delivered to you directly for some shipping cost. They also offer free shipping for orders over $50. Walmart sells a lot of stuff but Amazon beats Walmart (you can find lot of stuff on Amazon that you may not in any other store (except eBay)).
3) eBay.com: eBay used to be shady. I say ‘used to’ because they have now launched 30 days product guarantee where they back up your purchases. That was the assurance missing earlier which has been addressed. For that reason – eBay has to be on our top list. You can bid for products that do not have option to ‘buy now’. Do not forget to check out their ‘daily deals’.
4) Overstock.com: With their free shipping on orders over $2 and their amazing deals on home improvement goods in particular, overstock is on many shoppers list and for a reason.
Other sites of interest –
www.bestbuy.com – for all electronic needs
www.staples.com – for all stationary needs
www.toysrus.com – toys for all ages
www.tigerdirect.com – new and refurbished online electronics store
www.target.com – for all household needs
Limited time deals sites:
1) Groupon: Groupon went public recently and people have shown their faith in their IPO because of the value Groupon gives to their customers. If you want to try something, say like a massage or spa, check groupon first and you will be amazed to see 50% (or more) discounts. This will encourage you to give a try on things that have been pending for long. They also have amazing deals on electronics, learning classes, services etc. Usually offers last for 2 to 7 days.
2) Slickdeals: Electronics deals king – when it comes to finding a deal on ‘everything’ electronic, you should have a peek here for great deals. They also have other items (like shoes, auto, magazines, softwares etc) but they have set out firm foot print in the electronics and that gets them on our top list.
3) 1Sale.com: (Previously, 1saleaday.com) If you are looking for a watch or electronics or home family items, check this site. They have amazing deals that last for 24 hours (as the name suggests). You may not get latest models for super cheap, but they do list previous models for great discounts. Make sure that they also sell refurbished/factory reconditioned products.
4) DailySteals: Its a daily deals site with limited products listed with heavy discounts. Their model of business has evolved since years, and still command their presence in daily deals market.
5) Woot: Its again a daily deal site, its been in market for years and has good reputation for selling products for good discount. Check their wine section.
6) Deals2buy.com: This site aggregates deals from other sites like dell, walmart, staples etc., Its a good to give a quick peek into currently available deals before venturing into market. I have been using this site since 2006 and got great deals.