The unprecedented global events of recent years have placed acute strain on many traditional business sectors and led to a boom in the global e-commerce market positioned to pick up the slack. E-commerce has grown enormously over the past 2 years, accelerating the ongoing trend towards more transactions of goods and services taking place online in our increasingly connected world. As of late 2021, a record 2.14 billion users were shopping online, up from 1.79 billion in 2018. Last year saw 4,938 billion dollars change hands worldwide for goods and services, a figure expected to increase by over 10% year-on-year up to 2025.
There are many reasons why people opt to shop online, from the greater selection of products, to increased ease of access and competitive pricing. Yet in spite of this, sometimes users must take extra steps to ensure they’re getting the best deal out there on their chosen product or service. Below we’re taking a look at some key strategies savvy consumers can use to get the most out of their shopping online in 2022.
There are an estimated 24 million different businesses operating online, which makes the prospect of sifting through them to find the best deal potentially challenging. Fortunately, many platforms and services have sprung up to meet this need by collating the various businesses and market rates belonging to a specific sector in one place. These types of platforms are particularly popular in the realm of insurance, with popular examples such as GoCompare furnishing its clients with the best prices in car, travel and life insurance.
Yet this type of platform is not restricted to finance. For example, the company oddschecker ensures its patrons are apprised of the best bonuses available for online casinos, and the consumer electronics platform Which? reviews a huge range of products and rates them for affordability and quality. Using these sites can be a very effective means of cutting through the noise to get the best deals out there for your chosen service or product.
Honey by PayPal
Honey is a Chrome browser extension that offers those who use it the ability to scan the internet to find and apply relevant coupons for their shopping cart at checkout. This automates a process familiar to anyone who uses sites such as Groupon. However, the greater ease of use, coupled with the certainty that Honey will find you the very best discount on your transaction, makes it the superior option in 2022.
Honey is currently supported by over 30,000 retailers and growing, and is found to deliver an average saving to its patrons of 17.92%. While this may not sound like an enormous amount, over time this adds up quickly. The other key advantage of Honey, is that it applies available offers to exactly what you are shopping for. Contrast this to the allure of purchasing a quantity, or type, of good or product you didn’t necessarily desire just in order to qualify for an advertised discount. Honey instead operates in the background, and delivers effective savings with zero hassle. To use this service requires Google’s Chrome web browser, or alternatively one of any number of browsers that run on the open source Chromium platform such as Vivaldi, Brave and Microsoft Edge.
This last strategy employs a certain element of cunning. You see, many platforms and services utilize cookies in order to track your shopping and browsing habits. They then use this information to dynamically adjust the price of the items you’re shopping for. This works on the logic that if you keep returning to view a certain item, you are more likely to purchase it eventually. Knowing this, the website then drives the price up, ensuring a greater return for the retailer by accurately predicting your likely decision to redeem the transaction. To avoid this, one must circumvent the cookies that are tracking this activity. There are a few different ways to do this, from utilizing a VPN, to accessing sites through privacy focused browsers. But by far the simplest way is to use your existing browser’s private “incognito” mode. While this doesn’t prevent all tracking, it often throws these cookies off your scent ensuring you’re getting the objective market price.