Does Online Shopping Really Save You Money?
We all know the feeling. You’re browsing through your favourite online store, and you see the perfect dress/pair of shoes/handbag that you just have to have. But then you remember that you’re supposed to be saving money, not spending it. So you ask yourself the question: does online shopping really save you money?
The answer, unfortunately, is not a simple one. It depends on a number of factors, such as what you’re buying, where you’re buying it from, and how you’re paying for it.
Let’s take a closer look at each of these factors.
What you’re buying
The first factor to consider is what you’re buying. Some items are always going to be cheaper online, while others will be cheaper in-store.
For example, items that are frequently on sale or clearance, such as clothes, books, and cosmetics, are often cheaper online. This is because online retailers don’t have the same overheads as brick-and-mortar stores, so they can afford to sell items for less.
On the other hand, items that are not frequently on sale, such as electronics, appliances, and furniture, are often cheaper in-store. This is because you can often negotiate a lower price when you buy in-person, and you also have the option of haggling for a better deal.
Where you’re buying it from
The second factor to consider is where you’re buying the item from. If you’re buying from a well-known, reputable retailer, then you’re likely to get a good deal, whether you’re shopping online or in-person. However, if you’re buying from a less well-known retailer, or a private seller, then you may find that the prices are higher, and the quality is lower.
In general, buying from a well-known online retailer is going to be your best bet. Not only will you be more likely to get a good deal, but you’ll also have the peace of mind that comes with knowing you can return the item if it’s not what you wanted.
How you’re paying for it
The third factor to consider is how you’re paying for the item. If you’re paying with cash, then you’re likely to get a better deal in-person, as you can haggle for a lower price. However, if you’re paying with a credit card, then you may find that you get a better deal online, as many online retailers offer discounts for credit card payments.
In general, paying with a credit card is going to be your best bet. Not only will you be more likely to get a discount, but you’ll also have the added protection of your credit card company if something goes wrong with the purchase.
The bottom line
So, does online shopping really save you money? The answer is, it depends. By taking the time to consider the factors mentioned above, you’ll be able to make a more informed decision about whether online shopping is right for you.