How to Make a Strategy for Online Holiday Shopping

Strategies that take a little work could lead to big savings

Feeling Ho-Hum about holiday shopping at the mall? More and More people are skipping the mall to do holiday shopping online.

The free browser extension, InvisibleHand, tracks prices at 11,000 online stores without collecting any of your personal information and can let you know if an item you're looking at is cheaper somewhere else.

Honey, another free browser extension, sweetens your discount at checkout automatically.

"As long as you're shopping at one of the participating stores, Honey goes out and finds discount codes for you and enters them automatically when you check out," said Nikhil Hutheesing, Consumer Reports Money Editor.

Honey collects data to help save you money, but doesn't sell it.

You can also save money by playing hard to get. If you put things in a shopping cart but don't buy them, you may get an email the next day, offering a discount to complete the purchase.

"Sometimes you can even get a better price just by asking, Hutheesing explained. "If there's a live chat option you can go in and tell the representative how much you like the product, but you think it's a little pricey, and ask if there are any promotions or discounts."

Use sites like Raise and CardCash to create your own discounts by buying unused gift cards below face value and using them to purchase gifts for others.

Strategies that take a little work could lead to big savings.

Copyright CR - Consumer Reports
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