October 23, 2017

Simple Tips for Shopping at the Outlets

There are so many things that you can do to save money while shopping. One of these is to know where to go. For instance, outlet stores offer a range of products that come with discounted prices. You can also get great deals that will enable you to save money on amazing finds. Outlet shopping, in itself, can save you money, but here are several cheap tips for shopping at the outlets:

Do some prep work

If you’re serious about outlet shopping then you need to prepare your list of things to buy, as well as your budget. Just like in any shopping trip, having a list will save you a lot of time and energy. In outlet stores, you’ll find a lot of items at discounted prices, and it’s easy to get carried away with buying things that you end up not using. Also, keeping your budget in mind will help you avoid overspending.

Know when to shop

Expect long queues and crowded parking spaces, but you can avoid the crowd and have more time shopping than looking for a parking space by going to the outlet store on a weekday instead of Saturday or Sunday. You may also want to arrive early.

Wear comfortable clothes

Aside from wearing comfy shoes, you may want to go for clothes that are easy to slip on and off, in case you need to try some outfits in the dressing room several times. You surely don’t want to be bothered by what you’re wearing while looking at racks after racks of clothes, right?

Eat a full meal

Before going to the outlet store, make sure to fuel up by eating a hearty breakfast. Shopping all day is an exciting activity, but it can be really tiring, especially at outlet stores when you sometimes need to move quickly to get some great finds.

Invite a friend

Share the fun of shopping at outlet stores with a friend. You can help each other finding great deals. He/She can also help you decide on what items to buy. This can help save time and avoid second-guessing. It’s also great to have someone over lunch and coffee break. Who knows? Your friend may also have cheap shopping tips that can help you save more money.

Got other cheap shopping tips? Share your ideas on how to go shopping on a budget in the comments section.

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Top Websites to Find Cheap Bargains Online

People who are money-conscious are always on the lookout for great finds and ways to save money. When it comes to shopping on a budget, there are a lot of simple and practical tricks to get the most out of your hard-earned money without sacrificing style and quality. In this day and age when everything goes digital, online bargain community has become a great alternative. There’s no need to find parking spaces or spend time on long queues to the cashier. Shopping online is convenient, and it serves as a great venue for cheap shopping as well.

If you’re into finding a good bargain online, here are several websites that feature great finds without the hefty price tag:

Groupon

Groupon is a worldwide e-commerce marketplace that connects its subscribers with local retailers by offering a wide range of special deals on activities, travels, goods and services. It is a great way to try out new activities and rediscover your local areas without costing you an arm and a leg. You can also get local deals sent to your inbox by subscribing to their newsletter.

Mydeal

Mydeal is a place where you can find excellent prices on a great selection of products, from furniture to home & garden tools, from electronic to baby & kids products. They ship Australia wide and their Australian based customer service team respond to any queries within 48 business hours.

OzBargain

OzBargain is no doubt Australia’s hottest bargain hunting community. You can find a lot of hot deals, coupon codes, vouchers and freebies shared on this site. OzBargain will no doubt keep you updated with all the hot deals daily, but the catch is that you have to browse through each listing to find the good ones.

Lasoo

Lasoo is an online platform where you can find shopping catalogues from your favourite retailers,such as Target, Big W, Aldi, Myer and many more. It is a great source for you to identify what’s currently on sale and has local searches function to make it easy for you to find a store nearby. Lasoo will only make your shopping experience more efficient but can help you save money by allowing you to have the first dibs on catalogue deals from some of Australia’s most popular retailers.

Do you know other websites for cheap shopping? Share your shopping tips in the comments section.

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4 Hacks to Save Money on Household Products

Grocery shopping takes a huge chunk off of our weekly budget, so those who are money-conscious are being resourceful and creative when it comes to getting cost savings from trips to the supermarket. Household products are essential items on the grocery list, and while we cannot really do our day-to-day tasks without these essentials, it doesn’t mean that you cannot do anything about the weekly costs. Just like in any other item, you can do your shopping on a budget by employing some simple tips and tricks to save money on household products.

Here are four hacks that you can consider:

Look beyond the brands

Of course, if you have more than enough funds then buy whatever you want, without event checking the price. But if you’re shopping on a budget, look at other options. When it comes to household products, you can go for the generic versions which are usually just as effective. You can also look for local providers and farmers’ markets as the items that they offer normally come in much lower prices.

Make your own household products

DIY will always be on the list if you want to save money, and it applies to shopping on a budget. With just a bit of effort, you can save a lot of money through DIY household products every week. Do some research online and find out how to make your own body cleanser, dishwashing liquid, pet shampoo, and other cleaning agents. Also, you’ll be surprised at the many uses of common household items such as baking soda and vinegar in terms of cleaning surfaces and other areas of your home.

Look at the higher and lower shelves

In most cases, there are supermarkets that tend to place the most expensive items on eye-level shelves, or what we would see first. Call it a marketing strategy or what, but it will not be beneficial if you’re trying to save money. Consider checking the items at the lower part and higher shelves and you’ll likely see cheaper items.

Collect coupons and promo codes

Shopping on a budget also means the use of coupons and discount codes which are helpful for those who want to save money not only on household items but also other things in your list. Always check the local paper or look online for coupons of items that you need and just print them out.

Do you have other cheap shopping tips? Share your ideas in the comments section.

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Top 9 budget-friendly fashion bloggers

Shopping on a budget need not be a complicated task. There are so many ways to save money on shopping without sacrificing quality and aesthetic appeal of clothes and shoes. But if you still need more guidance, or probably some inspiration on how to pull off a look that’s within your budget, learn some shopping tips from these nine budget-friendly fashion bloggers:

I Heart Bargains

Chelsea Thomas is the blogger behind I Heart Bargains. As the name suggests, it specialises in cheap shopping tips, with every clothing item in the blog at less than $100.

A Broke Girl’s Blog

Affordable fashion is what Prudence Richardson is after. Her clothes are both fashionable and affordable, with her favourite shades of black and white and gray plus a pop of colour to make her clothes stand out.

The Budget Babe

Sale alerts, news stories on budget fashion, trend alerts, dress by numbers guide, as well as recreating celebrity looks can all be found at this fashion blog by a former content producer of Oprah.com.

What The Teacher Wears

Alex MacGregor makes sure that her outfits don’t leave a hole in your pocket and are still fashionable and can be worn at work.

Never Ever Pay Retail

Hannah Klose knows how to create an eye-catching outfit without shelling out a lot of money. She visits local op shops and looks for great finds.

Broke and Beautiful

Looking for budget-friendly fashion spotlights, cheap beauty tips, and super stylish outfits that are less than $250? Check out the Broke and Beautiful blog.

Frugal Fashionista

Spend less on clothes and still look like a celebrity. Learn a thing or two from Frugal Fashionista who focuses on retailer spotlights, deal listings, and recreating celebrity looks for less.

The Budget Fashionista

Kathryn Finney is the woman behind this budget-friendly shopping blog that provides sale tips and coupon codes so you can dress in style without spending a lot.

The Cheap Chica

Cheap shopping is the name of the game in this blog, where you’ll find printable coupons and coupon codes as well as great fashion finds below $20.

Shopping for stylish clothes, shoes, and accessories need not be a financial burden. With a few tricks and tips from budget-friendly fashion bloggers, you can pull off outfits that are visually appealing but without breaking the bank. Happy shopping!

Know other budget-friendly fashion bloggers and tips in cheap shopping? Share your ideas in the comments section.

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Does Online Shopping really Save You Money?

A lot of people love to go shopping, but there are some who prefer buying things online. It is a great alternative to going to malls and retail stores. And in this day and age where social media takes center stage, your favourite shop will most likely have its own Facebook or Instagram page. One main benefit of online shopping is that it’s a time-saver. Imagine the number of hours that you can save instead of waiting at the car park and at long queues at the counter.

Does online shopping save you money?  The answer is yes. This is good news especially for those who are shopping on a budget. For starters, just think about the dollars that you can save on transportation costs. But the key here is careful planning. Whether you’re shopping online or at the mall, there are guidelines that you need to know to ensure that you’ll get the most out of your money. Here are some shopping tips:

Get organised

Most websites offer a straightforward process for online shoppers, but if you’re a beginner, you may find it overwhelming. You may get lost in the wide range of products being offered, or worse, spend on things that you don’t need. To avoid these scenarios, make sure to plan and create a list of items that you need to buy. When you know the products that you need, online shopping will be much easier, and you can avoid overspending. If you plan to go online shopping on a regular basis, the website will recall the details that you’ve provided the first time so you don’t have to enter them again.

Check online reviews

With online shopping, you cannot check a product physically, so there really is no point in skipping product research prior to buying something online. It’s just a waste of money when you buy something, only to find out that it’s not of good quality or there are issues. So make sure to check online reviews as well as the website you’re buying the product from.

Look beyond the main categories

Online shopping can save you money if you know where to look. Most retail websites have categories such as Clearance, Sale, Overstocked or Reconditioned.  Check these categories and see if they have the products that you need. If not, it still pays to go over these categories for great finds.

Got other shopping tips? Share your ideas on cheap shopping in the comments section.

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How to Make the Most Out of the Stocktake Sales

The end of a financial year can mean handling a lot of tax forms and documents. However, a large group of people have their eyes on this time of the year because it also means stocktake sale! During this time, cheap shopping is the name of the game, where products from the previous season will be sold at reduced prices. And who doesn’t want to score great products without breaking the bank? You can find a lot of items at heavily slashed prices.  These include kitchen appliances, whiteware, electronic devices, home goods, as well as gadgets.

Just like in any shopping trip, there are some guidelines that you can follow to ensure that you’ll get the most out of your money. Here are some tips to get great items even when you’re shopping on a budget:

Know which products are worth buying

In a stocktake sale, it doesn’t mean that you’ll buy anything that comes with a discounted price. It is still important to do your research on what product or brand is best suitable for you, especially if you’re planning to buy electronic devices or gadgets. Check consumer reviews and compare features of several models before going to the store so you can make a well-informed choice.

Create a list

With almost all products being sold at much lower prices, it’s very easy to get carried away with shopping and before you know it, you’ve spent a lot of money on things that you don’t really need. Avoid impulse buying by making a list of the things that you need or want. You can start adding items to the list even before the financial year ends so you don’t miss anything.

Watch out for one-off sales

Many retailers start their sale season early. Some even extend after Christmas. Stay updated on your favourite stores so you don’t miss out in case they start their sale early. In this way, you can tick off everything on your list earlier than most people, plus you can avoid the shopping crowd.

Go shopping online

Expect long queues and crowded shops during a stocktake sale. But if you’re not willing to wait in line for too long or get sore feet, you can still take advantage of the sale by going online. It’s convenient, plus you can easily compare prices of different brands.

How do you get the most out of a stocktake sale? Share your shopping tips in the comments section.

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5 Effective Ways to Stop Impulse Buying

Are you a shopaholic? Do you often buy things that you don’t really need? If you are, then you should probably stop it before it’s too late. Impulse buying can lead to financial problem if not controlled. Before it gets worse, here are some shopping tips to overcome impulse buying:

1. Create a budget

This is one great way to minimise your expenses. But it does not stop at just knowing what you can spend. What’s more important is to stick to your budget. Decide and commit to only spending the money that you have. If you own a credit card, it may be better to leave it at home to avoid being tempted to spend.

2. Use cash only when purchasing/shopping

Avoid using your credit card during a shopping spree unless you have a planned purchase and you also created a plan on how to pay it off. According to experts, people tend to spend more money when using a credit card. So when planning to go to the mall, leave the card behind and just spend the cash that you have.

3. The 30-day rule

This shopping tip is hard to follow especially for impulse buyers.  If you feel like buying new clothes or top-of-the line gadgets, wait for a month before buying the items. If you still want to buy even after 30 days then go ahead. In some cases, people tend to forget about the items, meaning they don’t really need to purchase them.

4. Don’t go shopping when you’re upset

In many cases, emotions get the best of us that we go shopping as an outlet of our stress and frustrations.  Break that habit. Instead, find something else to keep your mind occupied. Do some arts and crafts, listen to music, read a book or talk to friends.

5. Don’t let marketing tactics lure you

Retail stores employ a wide range of marketing tactics to attract customers.  Chances are, you’ll end up buying what they offer even if you don’t really need it. Avoid going to shopping malls and shops if you have nothing to buy to avoid impulse buying.

Spending our hard-earned money is not a bad thing. It’s one of the main reasons why we work so hard in the first place. What we need to avoid is impulse buying. It will only lead to spending money on things you don’t need. Keep these tips in mind so you can stick to your budget and avoid impulse buying.

Got other shopping tips on how to avoid impulse buying? Share your ideas in the comments section.

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Reasons Why We Impulse Buy and How to Avoid It

What is impulse buying? It is buying a product or service when you don’t have a plan to do so. This unplanned decision results in overspending on things that we don’t really need or want. There are many possible reasons why people impulse buy. Here are the common ones:

Instant gratification

Just the thought of getting that handbag or a new set of earphones is a sure-fire pick-me-up after a hectic day at work. For some people, impulse buying gives them a sense of immediate enjoyment. It makes them feel good about themselves, somehow overshadowing whatever negative energy or unhappy thoughts they have on a certain day.

Getting discounts is a good deal

Anyone wants a good deal, especially when shopping on a budget. When we see discounts and promos, we tend to buy the product or service right away, thinking that it’s cheap shopping and we get significant savings. The truth is, you did not save anything. In fact, you spend money on something that you may not need.

Impulse buying, even with discounts, is not cheap shopping. The end result is paying for things that you don’t really need. How can we avoid shopping on impulse? Here are some tips to consider:

Create a list and stick to it

When you know what you need to buy, you will be able to avoid all other aisles that can distract you with nice displays and discounted items.

Use cash instead of credit card

People tend to spend less when they can only buy things with cash. When you use a credit card, it will be harder to keep track of your spending and you may end up with more debts. By paying in cash, you will buy only the things that your money can afford.

Wait before you buy

If you find something that you really want, wait for several days to decide if you can afford it or not. If you really need it, you can go back to the store and buy it. In some cases, you may forget about the product because you probably don’t need it anyway.

Cheer yourself up with free rewards

Instead of going to the mall when you’re feeling sad or anxious, take a long hot bath, visit a local art gallery, stay at home and watch your favourite movies, learn a new recipe, read a book or just catch up on sleep. Do something that you like and doesn’t entail spending a lot. Rewards like this can surely cheer you up and keep you away from impulse buying.

Got other shopping tips? Share your ideas on cheap shopping in the comments section.

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About ZARA – The Story of Fast Fashion and How It’s Saving You Money

A lot of people take pleasure in shopping for clothes and shoes in Australia. Obviously, it costs money, but for the money-conscious, cheap shopping is the name of the game. This does not necessarily mean buying the cheapest items available, but rather getting things that are both affordable and useful. You’ll find that there are a lot of ways to save money while shopping for clothes and shoes, and you don’t really need to exert a lot of effort to achieve this. In some cases, the brand or store itself, and the way they manufacture products, can help save you money. Take the case of Zara. 

Zara is a Spanish brand which has established its presence in more than 50 stores with its more than 1,500 stores. This large retailer is a champion of a manufacturing philosophy known as “fast fashion”. Aside from Zara, Topshop, H&M, and Xcel Brands are other large clothing retailers that adopt the concept of fast fashion.  

Fashion retailers use the term “fast fashion” for clothing collections which are based on trends seen at Fashion Week every year. In simple terms, it takes on fashion trends and clothing is designed and mass produced quickly at affordable prices. This means that a large chunk of the consumer market will be able to purchase clothes with the latest styles at lower prices. In this case, you’ll be able to save money when shopping.  

Where did the clothing philosophy “fast fashion” originate? During the 1980s, there is a manufacturing concept known as “quick response”. It then moved to the model of “fast fashion” during the late 1990s up to the early part of the 21st century. Nowadays, “quick response” is associated with “fast fashion” for mass manufacturing designer clothing effectively, thanks to new technologies that greatly decrease the time spent from design to production. 

Zara has been considered to be at the forefront when it comes to reducing the time between design and production. As the manufacturing time is reduced, they are able to create thousands of product units per year. What does this mean for those who are shopping on a budget? With the shortened manufacturing time, Zara can offer new items more frequently, giving you more options, and with new items, product availability is likewise improved. With more clothing options, Zara is able to cater to a lot of customers who are looking for stylish garments at affordable prices. 

Got other shopping tips in Australia? Share your ideas on how to go shopping on a budget in the comments section. 

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4 Grocery Shopping Tips when on Holiday

Taking family vacations in Australia is a great way to bond and have fun with the loved ones. There are a lot of sceneries to explore and many fun activities to do. One great activity is to discover different cuisines. That means dining out a lot. But for the money-conscious, you can do grocery shopping and cook your meals for the family while on vacation. It helps you save a lot of money, plus it can be enjoyable.

Food accounts for a large portion of a weekly household budget, and on holidays the list of things to buy can go on and on. But shopping on a budget is still a feasible idea. In fact, there are a lot of simple ways to cut grocery costs without sacrificing the needs and wants of your family.

Here are four grocery shopping tips to consider:

Set a realistic food budget

As with any shopping trip, don’t go to the supermarket without a budget to stick to, or you’ll end up overspending. Take a look at your expenses and know how much money should be allotted to grocery shopping. It may be higher because obviously you want your family to have fun while on holiday, but the key is to set a budget and stick to it.

Plan your meals

With your budget in mind, you can think about the dishes that your family would want to eat when on holiday. Meal planning can help you stick to your budget by buying only the items that you need for the meals you’ve planned. It also helps avoid food wastage.

Explore local markets

Fruits, vegetables, and other fresh produce take the center stage in local markets, and since these are most likely from local farmers, these tend to be less expensive compared to their counterparts in supermarkets. Local markets also offer fresh and good quality produce, giving your family access to healthy food choices.

Know when to shop

Many supermarkets offer certain items at discounted prices at the end of the day or a few hours before closing time. You can buy food like bread, fruits, and vegetables which supermarkets need to replenish the next day.

Grocery shopping on a budget can be done even when you are on holiday. Keep these grocery shopping tips in mind so you can save money on food and still have fun on holiday.

Do you know other ways to go shopping on a budget in Australia? Share your tips in the comment section.

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