Online Shopping Tools

The world of online shopping

Shopping online is convenient and fast. It provides you with an abundance of shops and products at your finger-tips. Now all you have to do is find the best deal and click PAY. Easier said than done! The amount of possibilities offered us by online shopping can be overwhelming; what’s more, some of us may still prefer to purchase our products in person so that we can feel and see the merchandise before buying it.

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What are online shopping tools?

Online shopping tools aim to help you find the best bargains online as well as offline through various, methods including: email alerts (through various retailers), plugins (such as PriceGong), and websites (such as Bottomdollar.com). While one store may have the lowest price for one product, another may have the lowest price for another. There is no way you can navigate all the different sites, stores, and options by yourself, and this is precisely where online shopping tools come in.

Email Alerts

You can sign up for email alerts with various retail stores such as Macy’s, Kohls, Bed Bath & Beyond, and so forth. These stores send you email alerts about sales, product updates, and limited-time offers. The major benefit of email alerts is that you will often receive sale and product info before the general public does. Retailers may also send you coupons for in-store use or for online shopping. You can usually easily sign up for email alerts through the retailers’ websites.

Plugins

If there is no one particular store you prefer, you can download an add-on (plugin) to your computer. This will add additional features to a larger software application such as Chrome or Internet Explorer. Plugins can usually recognize and analyze the products you are looking for. For example, the PriceGong plugin is a separate browser window (slider window) in the bottom right corner of your regular browser. It can be downloaded for free. PriceGong identifies the products you are searching for on your browser and then suggests other alternative offers of these products and provides you with user reviews and coupons in the slider window. Having the PriceGong plugin displayed in the bottom right side saves you the time of having to search for the product on different merchant sites. Other popular plugin functions include The Camelizer which tracks price changes of various retailers including Best Buy, Amazon, etc. and shows you the price history of the product you are seeking. Also, the E-Bay extension for Chrome helps you keep track of items you are bidding on.

Websites

For those of you reluctant to download anything, there are many websites you can visit to make your online shopping experience easier. For the most part, these websites will serve to compare product prices between different stores and retail sites. Some sites, such as Become.com, even conduct product research (through reviews, reports, etc.) to provide you with information relevant for making a purchase. Some further recommended price-comparison websites include PriceGrabber.com, Google Shopping, Pronto.com, and Shopping.com.

By Jason Phillips

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