15+ Tools to Enhance Your Online Shopping Experience
If you frequently shop online, you know how overwhelming it can be with all the online deals, coupons, and promotions available all over the Web. It’s almost impossible to keep up with everything and it’s even more impossible to compare product prices with hundreds of other online retailers. So where do you find the time to do all of this research?
Well, you don’t! Instead, you can rely on one or more shopping tools to do all of the work for you.
This list will take a look at some of the best online tools that are available for Chrome, Firefox, Safari, IE, and even Opera. These tools will not only save you a lot of money and help you become a smarter shopper, but they’ll also save you a lot of time since they’ll do all the searching and price comparisons for you.
If you have an Amazon account, then more than likely you’ve added items to your wish list. This extension allows you to add products from any website (not just Amazon.com) to your Amazon wish list. This extension makes it easier to track items that you want to eventually buy from anywhere on the Web, all from a single site.
This is a very useful tool that shows you the lowest price for whatever you’re currently viewing. For instance when viewing a specific product on Amazon, InvisibleHand will notify you if that product is cheaper on another retailer site. The tool supports over 200 retailers from the US, UK, and Germany. Plus, not only is it great for products, but it can also help you find the cheapest flights from various travel sites.
Have you ever missed out on an eBay auction because you weren’t able to stay on top of it? With this extension you can keep track of items that you’re selling and bidding on and keep up with daily deals. It keeps you signed in securely and lets you place bid on active items, save searches, and keep up with saved sellers.
This tool is similar to InvisibleHand (mentioned above), in that it shows you the lowest prices for any product that you’re viewing; it supports over 3,000 merchants. In addition, it also shows you coupon codes and shipping codes that you may be able to use for the retailer you’re currently on. This helps you to save even more money on your purchase. For many products it even shows you user ratings so that you can find the best products.
“The Shopping Buddy displays the rating of stores you are currently visiting right in the omnibar; you can also read reviews by clicking directly on the rating icon.” So if you’re worried about how trustworthy a retailer is, this extension can help you with that. It will also let you know (via a notification banner) if the retailer you’re on offers any discounts for using Google Checkout. You’ll be able to see full details of the promotion along with the minimum purchase requirements.
If you’re a frequent Craigslist user, you know how frustrating it can be to have to click-through each ad just to see the pictures that are included. With this extension, you can actually see the pictures on the search results page. This saves you time (and clicks) when shopping on Craigslist since you can quickly scan through all the pictures at once.
If you’re looking for more than just image previews on Craigslist (like the extension above), you’ll really enjoy Craigslist Helper. This is the ultimate tool for shopping on Craigslist with numerous features that include:
- Image thumbnails and previews
- Ad previews – view ad text without having to click-through
- Alerts via desktop notifications when a new ad matches one of your saves searches
- Searching through multiple cities at once
- Ability to add notes to ads – great for keeping track of communication efforts and other relevant information
- Totally ignore and hide ads so that you never see them again
- Blacklist ads containing specific keywords
- and much more
This tool lets you track price changes on various retailers like Amazon, Best Buy, Newegg, and more. It helps you figure out if a price is “good” or not by showing you the long-term price history for the specific product that you’re viewing. Plus, the chart is unobtrusive since it is viewed by clicking on the extension icon in the omnibar.
This extension is also available for Firefox.
If you’re a fan of shopping deal sites like Groupon and LivingSocial, you’ll love Groolu. It collects coupons on a daily and hourly basis for the above-mentioned deal sites plus Tippr, Zozi, and Dealster. It then notifies you when a new coupon available and gives you relevant information such as an image, vendor details, deal name, percent off, and sale price.
This extension adds a button to your browser that lets you automatically compare prices in real-time. It works with over 300 online retailers and will alert you (via the browser button) when a cheaper price has been found for the product that you’re viewing. Once you click on the browser button and open the window, you’ll notice 3 different color badges:
- Green – The product is cheaper somewhere else.
- Blue – The price is the same on all retail sites.
- Orange – The price is higher on other retail sites.
So you can use these colored badges to quickly see whether you’ve found the best deal or not.
This tool is also available for Safari.
Compass enhances your shopping experience by providing you with a navigation menu on every product page. This is helpful because it allows you to quickly find what you’re looking for, without having to scroll through the entire page. You can also hide the content you’re not interested in on the menu, so that it’s easier to find what you are actually interested in. Compass is a definite time saver for long product pages and helps you cut back on scrolling.
This tool is also available for Safari under Shopping category.
If you don’t currently shop online, you may want to start because you’ll often find that products are much cheaper online once you find the lowest prices and add in a coupon code.
Boo.ly is an all-in-one tool that acts as your personal shopping assistant. You can compare product prices, see special offers and deals, and find coupons to save money on your purchases. It works on thousands of shopping sites and sections like Amazon, Google, Yahoo, and Bing. In your results you’ll see a little shopping tag with a “b” on it; clicking on this will bring up a window with more options and relevant information.
Window Shopper helps to notify you of lower priced items on various retail sites; it covers over 130 million products in various categories. Just click the “See Similar” button on your favorite shopping site to open the Window Shopper window and see identical and similar products. You can then click on the stores like to see all stores that are selling that item. This is great way to save money on and get the best price on an item of interest.
With PriceTrace you can compare prices, check price history, and subscribe to price drop alerts for any product in just one click. This add-on adds a toolbar to Firefox that lets you “trace” any item on most retail sites like Amazon, Walmart, Newegg, and Best Buy; it also works on the search engines Google, Yahoo and Bing. You can also use the website to search for items and compare them by UPC, SKU, title, or URL.
This tool allows you to get the best deals by “presenting contextually relevant information in real-time.” Not only will you see the best prices, but you’ll also see relevant images, videos, customer reviews, and even availability of products in your local area. Ciuvo currently only works for retailers in the USA, Germany, and Austria.
This tool lets you know if the current price that you’re viewing is the best price. If it is, a green check mark will show in the top left corner of the screen. If it’s not, it will show you the best price and where you can find it online. You can also add items to your wish list and set price alerts so that you’ll receive an email when the product hits your target price.