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The Ultimate Online Shopping Guide: 50+ Essential Tips, Tricks, and Secrets

We have all the tips, tricks, tutorials, and guides you’ll need to become a master of shopping online. Find better deals, avoid tricky scams, and save money!

Online shopping has exploded so much in the past decade that brick-and-mortar stores are closing in response. And in America, over half of all online shopping is done through Amazon. With free two-day shipping via Amazon Prime, it’s no wonder that people are coming to rely on the e-commerce giant for nearly everything.

But online shopping can be a huge money sink if you aren’t careful. On the one hand, it’s incredibly easy to overspend if you’re careless; on the other hand, you can save a LOT of money if you’re patient and know how to snag deals and bargains as they come.

Here’s what you need to know about being a better, smarter, and faster online shopper.

The Best Sites for Online Shopping

Amazon is the king of all online retailers, and that won’t be changing anytime soon. But that doesn’t mean you always have to shop at Amazon. Indeed, you might want to shop elsewhere for any number of reasons:

Where to Shop Online for Specific Items

At the end of the day, there are dozens of excellent online retailers out there. Many of them are niche and specialized in a certain category of items, so don’t expect to find a full-blown replacement for Amazon. Rather, when you’re in the market for something specific, consider these sites instead:

Tips When Shopping on Amazon

amazon-prime-benefits

It’s hard not to shop on Amazon these days. The next time you find yourself browsing the available wares, make sure you employ these tips and tricks to make sure you’re always getting the best deals and making the most of what Amazon offers:

Every so often, you’ll run into issues when shopping on Amazon. Don’t get too hung up on it as that’s to be expected with an operation as monolithic as Amazon. Just take the necessary steps to avoid scams and rectify issues:

If you find yourself ordering from Amazon often, you may want to consider upgrading to Amazon Prime. It’s not too expensive and comes with all kinds of benefits beyond free two-day shipping:

Tips When Shopping on eBay

ebay-black-friday

Want to buy something used or unusual? You’ll probably find it on eBay. As one of the world’s largest online marketplaces, you’ll find all kinds of stuff that you won’t elsewhere. Just be careful and always triple-check listings before committing to a purchase:

Tips When Shopping on AliExpress

aliexpress-safety

AliExpress offers some of the cheapest prices you’ll find anywhere on the internet, but it comes at a price: slow shipping speeds and higher risk of fraudulent goods. Here’s what you need to know before ordering anything on AliExpress:

How to Effortlessly Find Bargains, Deals, and Coupons

Hunting deals and coupons can be mentally exhausting. Fortunately, there are all kinds of websites, apps, and tools out there that will handle it for you. For very little effort, you can save tons of money with every purchase:

When Online Shopping Goes Wrong

Have you been scammed by an online retailer? Is a company refusing to honor their refund policy? Want to put an online shop on blast for terrible customer service? Check out these handy sites that let you do just that:

More Online Shopping Tips

Read the full article: The Ultimate Online Shopping Guide: 50+ Essential Tips, Tricks, and Secrets

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The Best Student Discounts on Laptops, Smartphones, Tablets, and More

You can buy almost everything online at a discount. However, certain groups of people can get even steeper price cuts. Out of everyone, students and educators receive the deepest discounts.

That’s why it’s important to know where and how to get student discounts on laptops, tablets, and other electronics. The following sites offer some fantastic student discounts that you won’t want to miss out on.

When to Buy a Laptop

The best time to buy a laptop varies depending on the season. From roughly July to September, you’ll find loads of back-to-school deals. Then, from November to December, holiday deals begin. In the Spring, around February to April, retailers again slash prices. These are all worthy times to purchase a laptop.

For students, the best deals usually arrive from July through September, during the back to school frenzy. Still, don’t pass up a solid deal simply based on the season! Discounts run year-round. Once you pick out a laptop, don’t forget to get one of the best anti-theft laptop bags to keep your new rig secure.

Where Can You Get Student Discounts?

Don’t pay full price! Snag some sweet laptop discounts for students from these excellent providers.

Student Discount: Apple’s Education Program

Apple Student Discount Laptops

Mac devices are increasingly popular for a variety of purposes. Notably, Apple laptops appear in droves on campuses. Not to be outdone by its Windows counterparts, you can also get student laptop discounts for Apple products. Savings target both current and new college students and their parents.

Apple opens this to faculty and staff, helping educators as well as the educated. Moreover, its education pricing is available for home-school teachers of any grade level. Apple generously includes most of its hardware in the Apple Education Pricing program. If these discounted laptops still aren’t in your budget, you should look into the best places to find a refurbished Mac laptop.

Best Buy Student Discount: Best Buy Student Deals

Best Buy Student Discounts Laptops

Tech retailing giant Best Buy offers a lot of student discounts. While these vary by department, Best Buy does include discounts on its laptops. To take advantage of its student discounts, you’ll need to create or sign in to your Best Buy account, and sign up for Student Deals. After signing up, you’ll receive email coupon codes redeemable both online and in-store. You’ll be able to sort items by student deals, then use your coupons appropriately.

Dell Student Discount: Dell University

Dell Student Discount Laptops

PC manufacturer Dell offers student discounts through Dell University. Among the advantages, there’s a price match guarantee for students. Plus, students may earn as high as six percent back with the Dell Rewards loyalty program. Bonus benefits include free expedited shipping, and exclusive offers. For its student laptops, you’ll find top-of-the-line hardware for a discounted price.

Microsoft Student Discount: Microsoft Education

Microsoft Student Discounts Laptop

In general, Microsoft’s student, military, and parent discount program slashes 10 percent off the top of their products. That includes the Microsoft Surface Pro, Surface Laptop, and the Surface Book. Don’t forget to take advantage of Microsoft’s deal on Office 365—simply enter your student email address, and you can get Office 365 for free.

Student Discount Amazon: Amazon Prime Student

Amazon Prime Student Laptop Discounts

Amazon remains at the forefront of e-commerce, technology, and deals. With Amazon Prime Student, university students can sign up for an Amazon Prime account, and receive special discounts from partners that are exclusive to the Prime Student program. While this does require payment for a Prime membership, Amazon offers a free trial for six months, plus a discounted subscription price.

Prime Student offers exclusive deals on items that all students need, and that includes laptops, phones, tablets, and other electronics. Not to mention that Amazon Prime is packed with even more perks, such as free one and two-day shipping, as well as Amazon Prime Video.

Lenovo Student Discount: Academic Purchase

Lenovo Student Discount Laptops

Similarly, Lenovo drops prices for university students as well as educators. The five percent discount can help you save on the ThinkPad, IdeaPad, Yoga, and more. Once you add a device to your cart and verify your student status with ID.me, you’ll receive the discount. Just keep in mind that you can’t combine this discount with any other featured coupons on the site.

Acer Student Discount: Acer Online Discount

Acer Student Discount Laptops

Acer gives students a 10 percent discount plus free shipping. To get the discount code, Acer will redirect you to Student Beans, where you’ll verify that you’re a student. Unfortunately, there are some conditions to this discount—you can’t apply it to warranties, recovery hardware, Chromebooks, orders totaling over $5,000, or any pre-orders. The free shipping also isn’t available anywhere outside of the United States.

HP Student Discount: Unidays HP Student Store Discount

HP Student Discount Laptops

While you can no longer get a student discount directly from HP’s website, you can still use Unidays to get a deal on an HP device. Unidays is a great site for students looking to get exclusive discounts on a variety of popular brands, and HP is one of them. By signing up for Unidays and verifying your student status, you’ll instantly gain access to the latest HP deals. These deals tend to change over time, so you’ll want to keep an eye out.

Laptop Student Discounts: Third-Party Sites

On top of student-specific discount programs, tools like the Honey browser extension (which automatically seeks and applies coupon codes) can drop prices even further. Honey includes discounts that aren’t specific to students, so pretty much anyone can use it.

The CamelCamelCamel Amazon price tracker is free to use and helps find discounts on Amazon products. You can set up price-drop alerts, and there’s a nifty browser add-on. Website Dealnews is another awesome resource for students looking to save. Dealnews carefully and quickly curates the best deals from around the web in several categories, including laptops.

The Best Student Discounts on Laptops

Ultimately, getting the right student discount on laptops requires knowing what you need, where to look, and when to buy. Whether you prefer a Windows or Mac laptop, you’ve got plenty of choices from retailers like Amazon and Best Buy to specific manufacturers such as Lenovo, Apple, HP, and Acer.

Want to save even more? Check out the amazing discounts that you can get with your EDU email.

Read the full article: The Best Student Discounts on Laptops, Smartphones, Tablets, and More