A digital revolution in couponing coupled with the belt-tightening of the recession have combined to make coupons cool among more than just those clipping the Sunday paper to pieces. Digital coupon usage is now firmly a part of the online shopping experience of millions of US consumers, including myself, sometimes.
I’m sure you’ve seen at least one of these online coupon sites, like LivingSocial or Groupon, or even these invite only discount retailers like Gilt.com, selling everything for your house and home to shoes for your feet and even vacation packages. There’s pretty much a discount available for anything you so desire.
As a traveling nurse, you may find yourself in some remote locations where there may not be access to big shopping centers and malls, but thankfully there’s the internet. At sites like Valpak.com, plug in a zip code and get a list of stores in the zip code with printable coupons. There may be a chance stores in your area are participating within the online market. It’s worth a shot to save you some valuable bucks! If not, there’s always the online shopping experience, which is basically an electronic mall, full of everything you could ever want to buy…Ever.
Digital coupons typically work in two ways. On Coupons.com, store owners create coupons, with unique serial numbers, that can be printed and redeemed in stores. Coupons can also have unique promotional codes that shoppers can use on e-commerce Web sites to receive discounts on online purchases. RetailMeNot lets users post and share such digital coupons on its site.
“No matter how much money you make, you always love a great deal,” says Doug Clinton, a research analyst who tracks the daily-deal industry for Piper Jaffray, an investment bank. “There’s not a stigma attached to pulling out a Groupon vs. pulling out a coupon you clipped from the newspaper. That makes you look totally out of touch.”
The landscape for couponing is changing daily and soon you’ll see more integration within your social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter. It could lead to a coupon overload and you may start to ignore them simply because it’s too much to take in, but for now, it’s pretty easy to find deals to whatever you desire. So say goodbye to the Wednesday and Sunday papers full of pages and pages of coupons you have to snip out and say hello to your email inbox!
Here’s a wonderful list of coupon sites compiled from the thebudgetfashionista.com
RetailMeNot.com. With an easy search function, a shopping forum and, oh yeah, loads of coupons to great stores we love, RetailMeNot.com is one of our go-to bookmarked sites.
Rather Be Shopping.com. This site gives you several options to find what you’re looking for, including alphabetical listing of stores, the most current deals, and a section for free shipping (which, especially this time of year, is our favorite).
Yahoo!Deals Coupons. Totally easy to navigate (and totally uncluttered by all those annoying ads), click under “clothing” for current fashion-related deals. You can also check out storewide sales, weekly ads, and save coupons to use later.
CouponMountain.com. We like this site because they feature some of our favorite stores, and gives you lots of different options to find what you’re looking for. You can also submit deals you’ve found to share the wealth . . .
Anycoupons.com. It’s a little overwhelming at first glance, but clicking around we find lots of great deals. Our favorite part is that when we select the store we want, Anycoupons.com frequently lists multiple deals for that store, so we can pick the one (or more) that suits our needs.
Fatwallet.com. Browse for coupons by store for multiple current deals, or by most recent, expiring, free shipping, and right now, holiday deals. There’s also a “compare prices” feature so you can know if you’re getting the best bargain, and a forum where folks post a whole host of other deals as well.
DealCatcher.com. Features both online and printable coupons (which we love) and rebate notices. Subscribe to the RSS Feed to keep abreast of the latest coupons available without overloading your inbox with another newsletter.
CouponWinner.com. We like this site because it’s well-organized and the coupon codes are prominantly displayed in red (so we don’t have to pull out the magnifying glass to locate them). Also, specific categories like “Handbags & Accessories” and “Plus Size Apparel” makes narrowing down our search so much easier. Finally, the CouponScout tool is fab—compare up to five retailers to see who’s got the best deal, in a click or two. Nice.
CouponAlbum.com. Our favorite part of this site is that we can click sub-categories under our main choice (meaning when we’re in women’s apparel, we can narrow down to coupons, then to free shipping. Quick and easy with tons of great stores we shop at anyway.