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Tech Talk Live Secrets of an Online Shopping Guru
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Tech Talk Live Secrets of an Online Shopping Guru



Reference Librarian Mike Oetting of Hinsdale Public Library provides tips on how to get the best deals online.

Reference Librarian Mike Oetting of Hinsdale Public Library provides tips on how to get the best deals online.



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    Tech Talk Live Secrets of an Online Shopping Guru Tech Talk Live Secrets of an Online Shopping Guru Presentation Transcript

    • Secrets of an Online Shopping Guru
    • Mike Oetting
      Reference Librarian
      Hinsdale Public Library
    • Some recent examples…
    • Example One: Presentation Remote
      Street price $48
      Price paid $20
      Savings $28
      Saved 58%
    • Example Two: Oxford Shoes
      Street price $175
      Price paid $53
      Savings $122
      Saved 70%
    • Example Three: Down Jacket
      Street price $199
      Price paid $53
      Savings $146
      Saved 73%
    • Why shop online?
      • You can save a lot of money
      • Incredible selection
      • It’s fun to score a great deal
      • You can usually avoid paying local sales tax at the time of purchase*
      *Check with your tax preparer regarding Illinois Use Tax.
    • Finding the right item
      General review sources
      • Consumer Reports (available in Reference Dept.)
      • ConsumerSearch.com
    • Finding the right item (continued)
      Voice of the people
      • Amateur enthusiasts on discussion forums
      • Consumer ratings on sites like Amazon.com
    • Finding the best deal
      Price Comparison Search Engines
      General Merchandise (but especially electronics and computer gear)
      • Shopper.com
      • PriceScan.com
      • StreetPrices.com
      • PriceGrabber.com
      Total price after shipping in descending order
    • Finding the best deal (continued)
      Price Comparison Search Engines
      • DVDpricesearch.com
      Clothing and Accessories
      • Like.com
      • TheFind.com
    • How do you know if an online vendor is reliable?
      Sometimes it’s hard to tell. Your best bet is to use an online customer feedback service like ResellerRatings.com.
    • Use RetailMeNot.com to look for codes.
      Enter this code on the site’s checkout page
    • Opportunistic Shopping
      Sometimes the best deals present themselves when you’re not looking for anything in particular…
    • Discovering Deals
      Deal Tracking SitesEditors for these sites scour the Internet looking for good deals. They are posted in a list, with the most recent deals on top.
      • TechBargains.com
      • BensBargains.net
    • Discovering Deals(continued)
      Deal Discussion ForumsOn these discussion groups, users share deals with other members of the online community.
      • SlickDealsforum: forum.slickdeals.net
      • Fatwallet: fatwallet.com/forums/hot-deals
    • Discovering Deals(continued)
      Regularly Scheduled SpecialsCheck periodically for these deals.
      • Woot.com: a new deal every day at midnight (mostly electronics and computer gear)
      • Friday sale at Amazon.com: big markdowns on items throughout the store—from clothing to sporting goods and small appliances
      • Deal-a-Day tracker: DealaDayTracker.com
    • Discovering Deals(continued)
      Limited quantities
      • SteepAndCheap.com: outdoor clothing and gear on closeout from Backcountry.com
    • Discovering Deals(continued)
      Deal Notification Service
      • DealNews.com: sign up for email notifications of deals on specific brands or categories
    • Buying Used Items
      Why buy used?
      • Price: you can often save over 50% by buying gently used instead of new.
      • Quality: some used items are made better than their new counterparts.
    • Sources for Used Items
      Online Communities: enthusiasts often sell perfectly good items to finance their acquisitions of the latest-and-greatest. There’s literally an online community for every interest, and many have online classifieds. For example:
      • TheSandTrap.com: golf
      • iLounge.com: iPods and accessories
      • StyleForum.net: men’s fashion and clothing
      • ThePursePage.com and forum.purseblog.com: buy, sell, or exchange handbags
    • Sources for Used Items(continued)
      Online Classifieds and Private Sale Facilitators:
      • CraigsListChicago.org: (everything… including the kitchen sink)
      • GearTrade.com: outdoor gear and clothing
      • Half.com: books and music
      • Alibris.com: books (including rare items)
      • Audiogon.com: high-end audiovisual equipment
    • Sources for Used Items(continued)
      As the largest Internet auction house—eBay.com has an absolutely incredible assortment of new and used items listed at any time. From clothing to cars to beef jerky and basketball goals. eBay has it all.
    • Ebay tips
      • Read the fine print for the seller’s payment, shipping and return policies.
      • Check seller’s feedback rating.
      • Ask seller questions if item description is too brief or overly broad. For example, what does “good condition” mean?
      • Never assume. Always ask.
      • Improve your chances of winning by using a proxy bidding service like AuctionSniper.com or BidNapper.com.
    • What about buying locally?
      Sometimes it’s more convenient to buy from a local store. For example, bulky items might cost too much to ship. Use the Internet to do research before you buy something in person.
      • SalesCircular.com: categorized listing of local Sunday sale items at big box retailers.
      • Gasbuddy.com: find the lowest gas prices on gasoline as reported by your fellow consumers.
    • A Few Live Examples…