If you’re a big online shopper, you’ll know that getting the best deal has almost become a competitive sport. Not only can you get great discounts during season sales, you can compound that with coupon or discount codes, then you can use your store subscription for free shipping. Saving money on online shopping has evolved to become an art form, and we’re here to help share with you the best ways you can do it.

Practically any purchase can be cut down to size, it just takes a savvy shopper. So instead of just shopping on autopilot – enjoying the convenience, but missing out on savings – try these spending hacks to help you save money on your next online haul.

Check out new credit cards

Nowadays even your basic bank account has some competitive advantages. Some offer cash back off every purchase, while credit cards with no international fees will allow you to shop as normal on sites using different currencies, and even during your holiday in a foreign country.

So how have these companies responded? They’ve added even more rewards, high interest returns, and complete ease of use. If you’re the type who shops often, but always pays their bills, then a credit card can quickly become another great tool for online shopping. With regular spending, you’ll rack up loyalty points that can be used for free items or discounts, even buyer’s protection – just make sure you can pay what you owe back in time.

Check other sites

No matter how niche your item, there will be five different sites trying to sell the same thing. All that competition is good for the consumer. One will offer a free gift, another 10% off, and another will dangle a coupon for $10 off your next purchase. So when you find something you like, don’t click checkout, instead type it up on Google and have a look at who else is selling it – and at what price. You’ll be getting the same item, but that extra five or ten minutes searching online may save you a decent amount.

Buy in bursts

Almost every shopping site on the internet offers free shipping. The catch? You have to spend a minimum amount to qualify. This could be $50, or $500 depending on the type of products sold, but if you plan ahead you’ll snag it regardless. Keep a list of items that you want or need to buy, then when there are enough pieces being sold by the same store, buy them all in one go. It will take a little patience, but when shipping can be $20 each item, you’ll be saving a nice chunk of change.

Plan for the seasonal sales

Black Friday is the be-all and end-all of online sales. All your big online purchases should be saved for this time of year. Furniture, tech, presents, and luxury clothing can often be bought at half price with free shipping. 

But there are more retail sales periods to keep in mind alongside Black Friday. For instance, aside from Black Friday, the End of Financial Year sale (EOFY) also covers all sorts of items with big reductions. Most sites will find any reason to put on a sale, whether to get rid of old stock or drive sales during quieter periods, so if you keep an eye on your favourite items or brands, they’ll likely go on sale every month or two anyway.

Buy by best unit price

If you’re buying basics like pantry items, socks, jocks, or birthday cards, you shouldn’t focus on the immediate price. A three-pack of socks may be cheaper than a five-pack, but a five pack is less per-sock. So whenever you’re buying more than one of the same item, do a little division to see which pack costs less per-item. Some sites even do this for you, telling you how much your sugar costs per kilo, or by showing you similar item packs. You’ll be spending more upfront, but saving in the future.

Check out the relevant rewards card

Every shopping site wants you as a customer, and they want you to be a return customer even more. A loyalty card encourages that with discount coupons, special sales, and more. What’s more is they’re free, so you can sign up, save ten bucks, then forget about it until the next time you’re looking to buy a camera, a TV, or a jacket. Some brands will even offer personalised vouchers that will get emailed out around your birthday, or whenever you signed up for their mailing list, so make use of these too.

Use a coupon compiler

Unless you’ve got the coupon in your hand, it can be a pain to use them while online shopping. Either you search them online and have to sift through endless out-of-date ones, or you’ve got to look through your receipts and emails to find it. It’s a common problem, so apps have cropped up to combat it. Use programs like Honey, a browser plugin that pulls up a coupon whenever you’re on a supported site. That way you just do your shopping, and your app rummages through the coupon pile instead.


Savvy shopping is a skill that you develop by never settling for full price. If you’re not in a rush, wait for a sale. If there’s a loyalty card, sign up for it. If there’s a cheaper bulk price, get it. Make use of your credit card benefits. And always check for discount codes. Once you’ve tried these tricks, you’ll know how much of a rewarding skill it can be, and you’ll not just have fun shopping, but saving too.