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We love to buy online and the thing we like most about it is that you usually end up getting excellent value. But if you've ever wondered how to buy online like a pro, this is the article for you.  We pooled the combined knowledge of our staff at, we managed to develop a method to give consumers the best chance of landing an excellent deal when they shop online.

  1. Amazon Reviews:

  2. Online or offline, you never want to buy low quality merchandise. If your Blu-ray player stops working in 6 months, it doesn’t really matter that you managed to by it at a 15% discount. So a good place to start is to check Amazon’s ratings for different products. It used to be that Consumer Reports ruled the world of product reviews but they were steamrolled when Amazon used crows-sourced reviews. Generally speaking, if a product isn't rated at 4 stars or better and has a significant number of reviews, we don’t touch it. It really is worth spending the time to read some of the user comments. In fact, half your effort and time is best spent researching consumer feedback. Don't just look at product reviews, pay attention to consumers are saying about honoring warranties and after sale services and you'll be ready to price check your online purchase.
  1. and PriceGrabber Price Check:

  2. Check the price. That may require you to put the item in your shopping cart. If the shipping isn't free, make sure you pay attention to the shipping rates. Head to and do a search for the same product. The reason you need to check Amazon first is that they are not listed on Pricegrabber. Although some people use Google's Froogle, our tests show inaccuracies in the prices listed. For instance, today we checked on the popular Panasonic G-10 50 inch plasma and the price on Froogle was $1,105, a screaming buy and far lower than anywhere else. But when we clicked through to, we got $1,276! On Yahoo Shopping, Amazon’s price is $1,599! We don’t need that kind of disappointment or misinformation so we stick with Pricegrabber but start with for all of our online purchases.

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    lindaspreeman  - PriceGrabber |2011-01-26 15:50:27
    Thanks for the tip - I bought almost all my Christmas presents online - never knew about this. Excellent referral, thank you! ~Linda Spreeman~
    Premium Finance |2010-08-10 00:14:39
    Good read. Very informative. This can help a lot of people who are having a hard time with their personal finances.
    Craig  - Invisible Hand is pretty cool too. |2010-07-30 09:20:28
    I use this tool for comparison shopping. Once installed, it takes no effort and has occasionally directed me to sites at which I would not have normally shopped.
    Chris |2010-07-29 07:02:49
    I always use The split the click-thru With you. Over the years I have received almost $300 in cash back.
    haverwench |2010-04-08 10:11:21
    Am I the only person in the world who actually pays the "use tax" on out-of-state purchases?
    Beth  - online sales tax |2010-07-01 04:07:27
    haverwench, how do you even go about doing that?
    haverwench  - Use tax |2010-07-31 16:59:31
    There's a line for it on the NJ state tax return. You can add up all your receipts by hand, or you can just estimate how much you owe based on your income. I once tried it both ways and found that the estimate was accurate to within a dollar, so now I just do it the easy way.
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