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    Click Here For Savings — Fall 2009 | Out Here Magazine

    With some surfing savvy, the Internet can save you so much more — on everything

    By Hollie Deese

    If a dollar bill was lying on the ground, not too many people these days would just walk on by.

    So when it comes to finding savings online, people need to think of the Internet as one big sidewalk, with dollar bills dropped everywhere just ripe for the picking. And all it takes to collect is a few extra minutes and a little bit of know-how.

    Most online users are aware that you can print out coupons and check the big grocery chains' weekly fliers online, but countless savings are available that the average consumer lets slip through his or her fingers.

    "There are so many opportunities out there and I think people don't tap into most of them," says Barb Webb, co-author of The Mom's Guide to Earning and Saving Thousands on the Internet. She also blogs about Internet savings. "There are endless possibilities."

    Start by simply searching the name of a product you want to try. Some sort of deal is sure to pop up.

    "One thing people don't realize is that a lot of big retailers will have a sale in the store, but you can actually go online and (find outstanding deals)," Webb says. "Maybe the discount in the store is 15 percent, but online it will be 30 percent, plus free shipping. You are going to save more money because online coupons are almost always higher than in-store coupons."

    Make your purchase through a website such as and accumulate points, similar to frequent-flyer miles, that you can cash in later for gift certificates and more. And once you apply an online code pulled from a site such as, you are looking at some serious savings.

    In some cases, the item won't cost you a dime. "Just type in name of the product and more than likely you will find a free sample for that product," Webb says.

    The Internet offers not only concrete savings, but it provides information to help you find the absolute best deal on anything.

    "I may not be able to save on my auto insurance just by getting it online, but I might be able to find the knowledge on how to maximize my savings," Webb says.

    Comparison shopping among retailers is even easier with sites such as that lets you click the products you like from a master list, then compare them next to each other, including consumer reviews of the product. Before you break out the credit card, you can easily see whether something will be a great investment or a waste of money.

    Sometimes you don't need money to get the items you want. Dozens of sites are devoted to trading books, CDs, DVDs, and just about anything else.

    Best of all, information is free. Recipes, crafts, how-to projects, financial advice — it's all there.

    "The best way to find new tricks is to tap into forums and blogs," Webb says. "Frugal living forums are everywhere."

    Hollie Deese is a Madison, TN, writer.