Online shopping is huge. No secret there. A recent UPS survey (PDF) of online shoppers found that 70% of respondents prefer to shop their favorite retailer via the web. And while customer satisfaction with online shopping generally was high—83% overall—the lowest satisfaction scores had to do with factors related to shipping and delivery. Herewith, a few things to keep in mind that will make the process simpler.
This is all about convenience. If you frequently shop online, you'll find the advantages of this $79-per-year service quickly pay for themselves. Amazon Prime members receive free two-day shipping on millions of items with no minimum size order, unlimited instant streaming of more than 40,000 movies & television shows and you can even borrow Kindle books for free. For those that live in cities or more rural areas, the convenience of having your staples (everything from shampoo and toilet paper to socks and dog food) delivered to your door in less than 48 hours far outweighs making a special trip to the store and hauling everything home yourself. Plus, you'll find you make far less impulse purchases, thus saving you even more money. For added speed, sign-up for their one-click ordering and your purchase will automatically be charged to the default payment method on your account and shipped to the default address.
It's good for more than just eBay. There are a handful of benefits when you use your Paypal account to purchase items online. But what it's really good at is making the tedious checkout process lightning fast. Instead of entering in your billing and shipping information and then all of your credit card info at every online store you buy from, you simply sign into your Paypal account, which has all of your preferences saved. A few clicks and you're done. On top of that, there are revolving discounts from big name retailers to sweeten the deal.
This barcode-reading app won't really come in handy when you're clothes shopping. But when you're out looking for big ticket electronics? Or a store happens to be out of a needed item? Or the price seems a bit out of reach? It can be a godsend. This scanner quickly looks up an item, pulls up the prices and locations where it's available, and even allows you to purchase it using their Slide2Pay feature which stores all your necessary payment and shipping details.
Knowing when to buy something is key to scoring the right piece at the right price. Sign up for e-mail updates from your favorite stores or alerts from brands so you know when new arrivals come in and the sales start. That's important, since most shops carry only a limited run. And if you shop on Ebay, save your searches or keywords to know when your favorite items or brands get listed.