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Shop Smart and Give Yourself a Raise

By Millie Kinstead

Stretching your shopping dollars is one of the best ways to increase your savings or erase debt. If you're diligent about careful shopping, it can be like giving yourself a raise.

Comparison shopping before you make your final decision should be standard procedure. These days, comparison shopping doesn't mean running around from store to store marking down the price of an item that you want to purchase. You can check the sales flyers, then search the Internet to get numerous prices for the same item so that you can determine where the best savings can be found.

Prices on the Internet are sometimes cheaper than storefront prices for several items. Beauty products, such as perfumes, makeup, and skin cream, are an example. There are many online beauty companies that offer top quality beauty products at discount prices.

Coupons can provide good online shopping savings. To find coupons, just use your favorite search engine. Many websites will offer you coupons for online or offline use. Newspapers and magazines will also sometimes provide online coupons.

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Another way that you can get discount prices on the Internet is by becoming familiar with online auctions, such as eBay. You can shop for many new and used items that are being auctioned off to the highest bidder. This is a great way to buy something that you really need, such as a kitchen knife set or a camera, at a price that you can afford.

But beware: not all auction items will be sold at a discount. Sometimes the final bid will go higher than the item is worth, and sometimes the seller sets the reserve price too high. Protect yourself by knowing the true value of the item you want before bidding.

Because some products are discounted at the same time each year, patience in waiting for sales can pay off handsomely. Dishware, for example, is cheaper in March and September. The big savings on bedding come during the January White Sales.

Developing shopping savvy and putting in a bit of extra effort is all it takes to make your bank balance tip in your favor. The savings are out there, just waiting for you to find them.

© Millie Kinstead
Millie Kinstead is a writer for Fun In Shopping. Sign up for the free Shopping newsletter at


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