2020 Update: We’ve updated links below!
We’ve talked about some of my favorite online shopping tools before, but not in a while — and a lot of the older ones have gone belly up, so let’s discuss the best of today’s online shopping apps. Ladies, what are your favorite tools these days? These are the ones I use:
- Covvet: This takes the place of the dearly departed Shopping Notes, PoachIt, and Hukkster. The idea is simple: If you see a product you like, you click a bookmarklet on your desktop and tell the program what price you’d like to pay — then they’ll notify you if/when it goes on sale. I use this a LOT, and really like it — my only regret is that it doesn’t work on my iPad.
- Amazon Assistant. A year or two ago, Amazon changed their wishlist so that it now can track products on ANY site. If they can match it on Amazon they’ll let you know; otherwise they link your list to the third party site. I have zillion gift idea lists in here; it also helps me keep track of all the makeup I want to try/investigate in person.
- Amazon Subscribe & Save: Maybe this is primarily a mom thing, but we use the Subscribe and Save store all the time to put things on auto delivery. We usually get a discount of 5-20% by signing up for a subscription, and it’s easy enough to skip deliveries or move them up. (What isn’t easy, though, is changing your delivery date — you may have to wait more than 30 days to do it.) In addition to the convenience, the prices are usually better than what we find in local stores, but you should definitely do some price-per-unit comparison before you commit.
- Slice: Slice’s main feature is to keep you notified of delivery issues, but one of their other nice features is price tracking after the fact. If you buy a sweater, get it delivered, and then it goes on sale within the price adjustment window, Slice sends you an email. (Some credit cards do this for you, too, so check yours.)
PriceZombie: Unfortunately, this is the only one of the online shopping apps that tracks the price of a particular product across different sites (all of the above only pay attention to a particular product on a particular website) — and even then I think of it more for things like large appliances. But it’s free to install on your browser, and you only see the little button when you’re on a site with something it can track, so it’s pretty unobtrusive. Here are the plugins for Chrome, Firefox, and Safari.(2017 Update: PriceZombie is now shut down; I’m still investigating replacements like CamelCamelCamel and Invisible Hand.)
- RetailMeNot: I still head over here to see if I can find better sale codes before I purchase something online. :)
I still use the services I’ve mentioned previously, like ShopStyle’s product alerts and ShopItToMe emails, but not as much as I once did. (I wouldn’t say I’m on a shopping moratorium, but at some point getting too many shopping emails just adds to my information overload… so I’m taking a break.)
Ladies, what online shopping apps do you use? Do you have any other tips for online shopping?