A Little Extra Effort Could Save You A Ton

Voicerecorder I finally broke down last week and bought myself a digital voice recorder. My boss was supposed to order me one for the podcast I do for our paper but I'm tired of bugging him… plus, I want to use it guilt-free for my own purposes.

When I buy online, I've developed a new pattern. I do three things before I buy anything. I find it's harder to figure out exactly what I want then to do these three things I do afterward:

Step 1: Go to your favorite price comparing website, like www.pricegrabber.com. There is usually quite a range in prices for the item you want. Also it takes shipping and taxes into account, which is nice. Write the three to five cheapest retailers down as well as the price of the item.

Step 2: Check which of the three or five retailers are on www.eBates.com for further savings. Write that down.

(One retailer should stand out to you at this point. It usually does for me.)

Step 3: Go to www.retailmenot.com for coupon codes you can use with your chosen retailer. I don't bother trying the ones with less than a 50% success rate but otherwise, why not?

My digital voice recorder ended up being the cheapest at Overstock.com. (I would have never thought to look there for electronics!) I paid about 15% less for it after doing steps 2 and 3 then if I would have just took the price off of Pricegrabber. Also while Overstock was the second cheapest in the list initially (about $2 more then the cheapest), combining the free shipping with the savings websites put it way ahead in the end.

If there should be another step or two, let me know. I'm working on refining this and making it an easy download…

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