You may love scouring the sales racks or clipping coupons as much as the next person, but, especially during the hectic holiday season, you also appreciate technology that helps you reap savings from the comfort of your couch—or brings the best of the internet with you to the store.
“For shoppers looking to save money, online discounts and emails are the way to go,” says Jordan Glazier, founder and CEO of Wildfire Systems, an e-commerce platform. “It’s so much easer to find deals and sales online than offline.”
Yet unlike at traditional brick and mortar stores, online prices tend to fluctuate all the time: The time of year, current demand, and the website you’re using all factor into what you’ll pay, making it tricky to know that you’ve landed the best possible price.
To lock in the best deals this holiday season, use this eight tech solutions.
To find the best prices on the web: Google Shopping
Google is a terrific place to start. You’ll find prices, reviews, and videos for millions of products. Since Google is not affiliated with a specific retailer, you can compare a bunch of different stores in one fell swoop.
To see what you’ll pay on Amazon: the Amazon app
There’s a reason Amazon is called “the Everything Store.” You can buy virtually anything from the mega-retailer. With Amazon’s app, you can snap a picture of whatever you’re interested in, and then see product descriptions, customer reviews, and the lowest prices from Amazon or Amazon’s merchants right on your smartphone.
To track how the Amazon price has changed: CamelCamelCamel
If you’re craving something particular on Amazon like the Echo Dot or an eight-quart slow cooker, check out CamelCamelCamel. “It gives you a history of price changes and tells you whether or not it’s a smart buy at its current price,” says Glazier.
CamelCamelCamel will also display the highest and lowest recent prices, so you can assess what’s actually a good deal. If you sign up for notifications, the site will let you know when your object of your affection drops in price.
To find the best coupons for just about anything: Honey
Honey is technically a browser extension. Once you download and add it to Safari or Google Chrome, it will automatically find and apply the best coupons and promo codes when you’re shopping at any one of the thousands of participants stores.
To always have the latest coupon for a store near you: Yowza!! app
There are plenty of coupon apps out there, but Yowza is designed to offer the best deals based on where you are. The more than 70,000 retailers in Yowza’s database upload their coupons or discounts to the app, and Yowza triangulates the best deals in your area, using your phone’s current location data or the location you enter.
To reward yourself for all your gift giving: Ebates
To earn as much as 12% cash-back on much of what you buy, set up an account at Ebates and then shop at retailers like Kohl’s, Walmart, Dick’s Sporting Goods, and far more via the site. According to eBates, you can save up to 40% at over 2,500 retailers.
Even if you prefer shopping locally, you can still collect rewards. Just link your credit card to Ebates to earn cash back on the purchases you make with that card at participating stores.
To pay less for the brands you love the most: social media
For savvy shoppers, social media is a wonderful way to save on the brands you love. “Merely following your favorite stores and brands on social media will help you discover sales and exclusive coupons not posted elsewhere,” Glazier explains.
You might not see every offer in your newsfeed, so visit a store’s Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram profiles before your shop.
To hear about sales first: Store newsletters
Nobody likes an inbox full of emails, but subscribing to newsletters from your favorite stores and brands can produce big savings. “Many stores send discounts codes, promotions, and coupons to their subscribers, which are not available to other shoppers,” says Glazier.
Plus, you may get early bird access to sales, so you can snap up an item you’ve been eyeing before it’s out of stock.