I remember when I got my first smartphone, it was in 2010, just before embarking on a three-week-long road trip across the northeast USA. Apps like Priceline to book our next days hotel, AroundMe to find a place of interest around our location, Mapquest to replace expensive GPS navigation systems and GasBuddy to find the cheapest gas price in the vicinity.
In 2015, things have remained same, your smartphone and your computers now have more money-saving resources than what we had in 2010. Every day the app or the website numbers are growing. Most of them have an advertising-only revenue model. That means you get their service free of cost whereas they earn living by selling advertisements that these apps often carry. We choose to ignore ads completely like I do and the sites become treasure chests.
We all need a little help when it comes to budgeting and organizing finances. Long gone are the days of piled bank statements and handwritten lists; in today’s digital age it’s all about online banking, handy apps, cash back sites, comparison sites, and informative websites that offer money-saving tips. We reveal some of the best money-saving tools, and how they can help you to stay organized and in the budget.
(See Also – Apps to save you money)
Comparison sites are websites that will compare a range of products and services, most commonly car insurance, home insurance, life insurance, travel insurance, hotel rates and flights. Lowermybills is a service that can actually lower your utility, insurance bills.
Even Google price comparison works great for me. Let’s say, you need an external hard disk drive. Search for “Buy external hard disk” on Google. You will see the price comparison before the actual search results. This is Google making the job easier for you. You can click on the “shop for…” link and see all the results Google gathered.
Bing tries to do everything that Google does, so Bing also shows you price comparison on different items.
There are so many comparison sites online that you almost need a comparison site to choose your comparison site! However, don’t be put off by the choice, these sites can actually help to save you big bucks and lots of time too.
(Related – 12 Ways to Save Money on Clothes While Looking Good)
Providing that you pick a respected site that takes zero commission, these sites will quickly and efficiently scour the web for the best deals going and then present them in an easy-to-view list.
For air travel, I regularly use Kayak, Orbitz, Priceline, etc. They send your travel need to a number of airlines and list their prevailing rates for you. I do set up low price alerts to score bigger deals. I tried to make a list but folks at Kiplinger already produced a comprehensive list of travel sites that can save your travel money.
There are literally thousands of apps that relate to finances that are available to download on the iOS or Android Platform. Some of them let you save money, I am a frequent user of gas buddy. These apps allow you to have a host of information and clever technology at the top of your fingertips.
They also make it easy to keep all of your finances on track, or to view all of your accounts and bills in one go. Some of the most famous apps include LevelMoney, Mint, Spendee, Budget, ExpenseManager and Goodbudget.
Check out the listings in your phone’s app store to see new releases and popular finance apps that could help to save you money.
The best on so far for me is Coupon Sherpa, Retail me not and Chameleon John. The best value that these coupon apps provide is that I can search for coupons when I am out to buy things. Recently we had to purchase curtains for our new home. We searched for coupons at Home Depot, Lowes, target, etc. We found the best deal at Lowes and purchased from there.
To me days of clipping coupons are over, we can save a big chunk of time by doing a search on your favorite coupon apps.
Another app I recently used is Groupon, there was a cricket match played here in South Florida, before buying tickets through EventBrite, I just gave a quick try out on Groupon, and bang the ticket was there at half the price EventBrite was offering. On two tickets, we saved $20 instantly.
But, be very sure of what you want on Groupon, often we buy discount tickets for things we don’t really have a need for. We buy just on impulse and having a steep discount just encourages impulse purchase.
Cash-back sites have gained popularity in the last couple of years, with many savvy shoppers now using them every time that they make an online purchase. They don’t really save money but rather they generate a new income stream for you.
I am a regular user of InboxDollars, I get paid for things I’d otherwise do on the internet, like web surfing, playing games, giving opinions, etc. Although I can’t get much time out of my day job and part-time blogging to earn significant money, but, I know people who earn $100+ per month from InboxDollars on a consistent basis.
The way these cash-back sites work is simple, when you buy something online some of the time you will have been led there (often unknowingly) by an advertiser.
Although this makes no difference to the price of your purchase, what it does mean is that the advertiser will get a small percentage of your sale, or a commission, from the company that supplies the products. Cash-back sites cottoned onto this scheme and realized that everyday shoppers could act as their own advertisers and effectively score commissions on purchases that they make.
It doesn’t cost anything, and all you need to do is to click on the website you want to shop at through your cash back site. The cookies will enable the site to make note of your purchase and pay you your commission in due time.
From flights and hotels to grocery shopping and insurance, you can save a huge amount of products and services by using a Cashback site.
These are just three of the many ways that you can save money. Incorporate several into your life and reap the rewards. Happy saving!
Let us know how often you use sites and apps to save money in your life.
great article – this is something I really need to look into as I haven’t taken advantage of many opps yet to save money. I saw one the other day that was on my friend’s phone and had his whole budget – it was amazing. I think it was Mint but not sure.
The Finance Games says
Ibotta is my new obsession – you gotta buy groceries and eat, right? At least get something back for it!
great article – strangely companies are going out of their way to people to give money to visit sites and do stuff online.
I use Geltbox money -automatic download from any website (banks,cerdit cards) , high level of security (Your financial data is securely stored and encrypted only in your personal computer),When using Geltbox you don’t need to give your banking account numbers and passwords to a third party!