WANT to update your wardrobe for spring but don’t want to spend a fortune?
Although it’s not sales season right now, there are plenty of ways to save on your clothing purchases as personal finance expert at vouchers.co.uk, Andrea Knowles knows.
She revealed the nine secret ways to save money on your next clothing store, and you’ll be sorry you didn’t do it sooner.
1. Find secret sales
Have you ever visited your favorite online retailer only to be put off not having a sale right now? Well, twist: they probably have an online sale – it’s just hidden!
Many retailers have an internal company goal of moving more full-price inventory so they can brazenly remove the “sale” link from their menu. However, there is a way around this.
Just type “sale” in the search bar. If there’s a sale – not only will you find a bunch of great deals, but chances are you’ll have a better sale choice because not everyone knows this trick. River Island is a perfect example.
2. Lie about your date of birth
You’ve probably been told a million times to sign up for retailer newsletters in order to receive a “new customer” discount. But did you know there’s another way to get a great deal via email?
When signing up for a newsletter or retailer loyalty program, look for the “date of birth” section. Instead of typing in your actual birthday, put the date tomorrow – or whenever you plan to make a big purchase.
Often retailers only ask for your birthday because they plan to send you a discount for your special day. For example, H&M offers 25% off a purchase on your birthday and Greggs even gives you a free treat.
3. Download this Chrome browser extension
This is the most important and probably the least time-consuming tip because a simple Google search can take three seconds.
In fact, nowadays you don’t even need a “discount code for…” on Google, because Google Chrome browser extensions, such as Pouch, automatically list discount codes at checkout.
Even better, Pouch actually offers exclusive deals from retailers that you won’t find anywhere else on the internet.
4. Always use cashback programs
The likes of Top Cashback and Quidco will literally pay you to shop. The concept of a cashback system is quite simple – if you want to buy something, rather than visiting the retailer’s website directly, you click through to the business through a cashback site, like the two listed above, and you get paid for it.
Here are some examples of a typical cashback payment for popular apparel retailers:
ASOS – 1.6% – 8.5% of total purchase cost
Clarks – 3.2% – 5.1% of total purchase cost
New look – 0.8% – 6% of total purchase cost
5. Never pay for postage and packaging
Many retailers offer free shipping once you’ve spent a specific amount. So if you’re not far off the “free shipping price”, why not buy another item to get the offer?
Let’s be honest – you can buy anything that just hits the target price and then flip it. Just make sure the retailer offers free returns so you don’t run out of something you didn’t want in the first place.
Or if you do not wish to purchase another item, you may be able to collect your order for free or at a lower price at a local store or other collection location, such as a local newsagent. Most retailers offer this service for free or for a reduced delivery charge.
6. Hoping an item will be restocked? Check online on a Tuesday
If you’re looking for a specific out-of-stock item, check it out on Tuesday morning. This is when many stores update their stock status as they processed their returns the previous week.
7. Bought an item but it’s now on sale? You may be able to return it
If you’ve ever purchased an item at full price only to find it’s on sale a few days or weeks later, you’ll know how frustrating that can be.
However, if you keep your receipts, you may be able to repurchase the sale item and then return it with your old receipt.
Just make sure the original item receipt is still up to date. For example, most stores give you 28 days to return an item.
8. Never close the chatbot
When you visit an online retailer, you can automatically disable the chatbot that appears at the bottom of your screen. However, this feature is one of the most useful ways to save money on online shopping.
If you end up with a cart full of items, please message the chatbot and ask if there are any discount codes currently available. You might be surprised.
9. Add items to your cart
Did you know that many retailers will send you an email with a discount code for an abandoned cart?
To get these potential discounts, make sure you have an account on the shopping site.
Stay logged in when adding items to your cart, as this is the only way to link purchase intent to your email address.
And, if you’re worried about getting spam, set up a separate email account for online purchases so you don’t get too bombarded.