One of the most important innovations brought to us by the internet is the ability to buy online. Recent statistics say that Americans alone spent over $100 billion dollars online in 2010, a number that continues to grow by leaps and bounds each and every year. Just about everybody has bought something online over the past decade. Online shopping has changed the way the world shops.
There are things that people should buy online and other things that should be bought from traditional stores. Countless people spend too much money on stuff from traditional retailers when they could easily buy the same product online for much less. Since I don’t like to see people spend more money than what they have to, here’s a list of 10 things you can buy much cheaper online.
The markup at your local glasses shop is great for the owner of the shop, but not so much for the consumer. I’ve seen glasses that start at 25% of the cost that you’d pay traditionally at an eyeglass store. Sure, they won’t be a fancy brand name, but who cares if you’re saving that much money.
Contacts are even simpler to buy online. Just go to one of the many contact sites out there, type in your prescription, and you’ll get cheap contact lenses shipped directly to your door at a fraction of the price paid at the aforementioned eyeglass store.
I recently did a search on eBay for the brand of shoes I like. There were lots of different styles in my size, and I wear super big shoes. The shoes are brand new, shipping is usually reasonable and the process is easy as long as you know how the brand will fit on your foot. I could easily save 40-50% off what I’d pay in a store in the mall.
Everything from ipods to laptops are generally cheaper if you spend a little time online and have a little patience to wait for the best deal. Often the big box retailers will ship something to you for free if you spend enough money. If you’re willing to buy used, additional savings can usually be had with just about any electronic device.
4. Video Games
eBay, Amazon and all sorts of other websites have any video game you can imagine, from old Nintendo games to the newest Playstation titles. Video games are easily and cheaply shipped, and there’s never any confusion about what you’re buying. There are always people who have received brand new games who are trying to sell them, often leading to substantial discounts for the consumer.
Amazon isn’t the only place to get books for 30% below retail. Many of the bookstore chains offer a discount through their website. If you’re willing to buy used, many exchange based sites will let you get your reading fix for next to nothing. It isn’t quite as cheap as the library, but it’s still a huge difference over your local overpriced bookstore.
If you’re an investor who enjoys picking their own stocks, trading on one of the many online platforms can save you thousands of dollars, depending on how active you are. Since investing is all about making the most you can, every dollar is important.
Not only can you save a boatload of cash booking online, but the convenience of going to just a few sites saves all sorts of time as well. If you combine that with shopping for cheap last minute deals, someone can save thousands on a holiday. Just don’t be too picky about where you want to go.
Hopefully you can use some of these tips to save money the next time you need to make a big purchase.
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The preceding article was written by Financial Uproar. If you like what you read here, consider subscribing to his RSS feed. If you’d like to hear his 140 character or less musings, follow him on Twitter.