Three Hacks to Perfect Your Online Shopping Skills
Updated: Dec 2, 2019
When it comes to online shopping, there is no limit. Virtually anything can be bought or sold on the Internet from facial wipes and foundation to dog food and chew toys! In addition, sites like Amazon and eBay allow anyone to be a seller, whether they are a “traditional shop” or not.
This vast online marketplace has led many consumers to confusion. Unlike the past, consumers are now the party responsible for being educated. Picking the scent, style, and color of your new perfume is no longer enough.
Now, knowing how to get the best deal, where to get the best deal, what other places sell the same item, and which sellers you can trust make up the bulk of your online shopping knowledge.
Search engines like Google Shopping and Amazon show you product listings in the hundreds of thousands, and it’s up to you to pick the lowest price or best deal. However, it doesn’t have to be overwhelming.
Today, we’re going over the three most important things that any shopper should know when looking at online retail.
1) Bulk Isn’t Always Better
From choosing items when their price drops to buying in bulk, the first thing that any online shopper needs to know is how to get the most for their money. Theories are abound on how to get the best deal; however, the true answer isn’t to look at the overall price but to dig deeper.
Take, for example, searching facial wipes on Amazon. This search returns hundreds of possibilities, which you then pair down to one brand that you like. The offerings are two packs of 25 wipes each, one pack of 114 wipes, and a five-pack of 25 wipes each. Starting to sound like a math problem?
If you go by the advice “buy in bulk to save,” then you will choose the three-pack or five-pack. However, that might not be the best deal. When buying the three-pack, you would actually be looking at 10 cents more per wipe! While small per unit, the product overall produces a savings of $11.40! So, how do we solve this money-losing dilemma in all cases?
Compare Prices Online with Unit Price
You see, sizing up doesn’t necessarily mean you’re getting a better unit price, aka “the most for you money.” Think back to your money-savvy mom. At the grocery store, chances are she bought the item that was the cheapest per pound or per sheet, or per can.. That is unit pricing!
Just like back then, the best way to find a deal online is to use unit price comparison. Rather than always buying the cheapest or always buying in bulk, look at what you are actually getting for your money in each case at the unit price. That will net you the best result every time.
2) Shady Third-party Sellers Can Rip You Off
The next major tip all online buyers need to know is how to make sure the specific product you get isn’t a rip-off. As the biggest online retailers, Amazon and Walmart both have marketplaces that allow third-party sellers to offer various items on their platform.
While Walmart and Amazon might be great, not all of the sellers in their marketplace are (trust us, we’ve learned the hard way!). Some of the sellers are shady. Things like counterfeit products especially in the beauty category for outrageously low and high prices are unfortunately very common on these platforms.
Knowing how and when to avoid these sellers can be quite a hassle and will make saving money and comparing products online all the harder. While you can get a great deal sometimes, nine times out of ten, you will get a bad product for an even worse price. What is the best option?
Avoid Third-Party Sellers Completely
The best way to make sure that you are not getting taken advantage of by this process is to make sure you are always buying a product from an authorized seller of the brand, if not the brand itself.
Vetting ten third party sellers to find one real deal will often leave you spending more time than the money you are saving. (Who wants that?) Finally, there is one more tip that all online shoppers need to know.
3) Amazon Isn’t Your Only Option
If you’ve been predominantly doing online shopping for some time, then Amazon is probably your go-to as they have “everything under the sun.” Chances are, you think they are your best bet to find what you need at the best price.
After all, on top of the already good deals they offer, they also offer things like Amazon Prime and free shipping for purchases over $35! However, oftentimes, Amazon doesn’t offer the best product for your money.
Rather, newer eCommerce shops like Walmart and Target may be the better option. Recently these in-store giants have scaled up their e-commerce businesses dramatically with things like two-day shipping for purchases. While Amazon might have been the only option in years past, most everyday essential items are sold across all three retailers today.
Compare Prices Across Platforms
Multiple places to buy the same product means multiple places that could be offering you the best deal. Rather than stick to the first place you look, it’s important to check around as you would when making a purchase in a shop.
Differences in listing fees and payment fees for sellers can mean big or small savings between various marketplaces. Looking at each size offering on each website will ensure that you get the most for your money in each case. Don’t forget to look at the product reviews as quality has been known to change between marketplaces in the past!
Popcart - the Perfect Price Comparison Tool
Quicker for Unit Price Deals
The biggest inhibitor to saving money while shopping online is time. It takes a lot of time to do the unit price math for every purchase you make. That’s where Popcart comes in. We help by doing the mental math for you by searching hundreds of thousands of products and letting you know when and where you can get the best price.
As a price comparison website, it is our job to make sure your search results are working for you. With each purchase you intend to make, we look at the unit price for each scent, color, and packaging size to make sure you are getting the most for your money, and time.
Simplify Comparison Shopping
While telling an online shopper to avoid third-party sellers is easy, actually avoiding them during a shopping experience is another thing altogether. That’s where Popcart can come to the rescue.
Popcart helps users navigate the third party seller issue by filtering out third party sellers as we track unit pricing. While many price comparison sites just show you the lowest product pricing overall, our goal is to make sure you get the most for your money from vendors you can trust.
Check Different Online Stores
As you can tell, we are very proud of the price comparison app that we have created. As online shoppers ourselves, we know how hard it can be to save money and get the best deal online. That’s why our tool not only checks unit price and avoids third-party vendors, it checks across multiple sites as well!
For example, while the mint face mask might be best sold in three on Amazon, we’ll let you know that the lemon face mask of the same brand is three times cheaper individually over on Target!
Try Popcart Today!
Lovingly made in Boston, Popcart will check multiple websites for all sizes, scents, and colors of a product. Never worry about getting the best deal or shopping around again. Download our Google Chrome extension today.