Online shopping is currently an effective tool that most people use daily. Many people prefer shopping online because of the flexibility associated with this type of shopping. Various organizations have created shopping sites enabling clients to choose and purchase products based on their timeline and delivery. However, it comes with extra charges where certain goods have high prices because of the shipping costs. Furthermore, online purchasing poses a security challenge as many people have found themselves in situations where their data has been accessed. It is imperative to identify ways that one can save money through online shopping and, at the same time, secure personal information.
First, performing comparison shopping is crucial in reducing the chances of overspending on a product that may be cheap. Online shopping is convenient hence it is easy for one to compare product prices of multiple sellers (Foster, 2021). The available plugins compile price data from various websites, making it easy to identify cheap items. To prevent hackers from accessing personal data during comparison analysis, it is important to use a virtual private network (VPN) (Aseri, 2021). This program protects data by setting up a private connection between the websites one is accessing and the computer being used. Unauthorized users are given access to the network, enabling one to access various networks without the risk of leaving data traces that may make one get tracked by hackers.
Second, discounted gift cards provide an easy way to reduce the amount used to purchase a product. Most people are unaware of the discounted gift card because it requires planning for future purchases. The card provides one with a discount of about 5% to 20% depending on the online store and the type of product one plans to purchase in the near future. The discount varies from one company to another, although other sellers offer high discount percentages on the cards (Foster, 2021). Because of consistent demand, gas, grocery, and electronics usually have the smallest discounts. However, some entertainment-focused brands and luxury stores may offer higher discounts. Maintaining security with this product requires one to be cautious regarding gift cards. It is critical to avoid purchasing gift cards from untrusted sellers to prevent leaking personal data to people without knowing. Furthermore, purchasing new cards is crucial in preventing data leaks since used cards may have flaws that are easy to trace by hackers.
Third, signing up for an email list provides a cheap way of purchasing goods online. Most companies provide offers to individuals that have subscribed to their marketing emails since it provides them with an easy and cheap way of marketing their products (Taylor, 2020). Most marketing email messages have discounts, gifts, and coupons that one can use to purchase products at a cheaper cost. One can wait until they provide the best offers or use the coupon to make purchases. When using emails as a source of information for cheap online purchases, it is required to have activated Antivirus programs that will detect emails that are used to mimic marketing messages while hiding malicious content (Farxodovich et al., 2022). The program will prevent one from opening such emails, protecting personal information leaks. Furthermore, it only allows mails that are from trusted parties.
Fourth, leveraging credit card use is crucial in increasing the chances of offers from retailers and credit card providers. Credit card providers make money when one uses the card and when it is not used frequently, they come up with an incentive to push someone to use it. This is done by offering cashback and direct offers through retailers. This provides purchasing opportunities while saving money through the provided offers. When using a credit card, security is enhanced through the use of a one-time virtual pin (“Tips to Safe Online Shopping”, 2022). This reduces the chances of compromising the credit card. The one-time pin is only used at one point, and the information provided does not provide a trail that may lead to access to personal data.
Fifth, one can use waiting games with a dedicated email for shopping without access to personal details. Playing a waiting game in online shopping leads to purchasing products at a reduced price (Taylor, 2020). Retailers usually have big sales at a certain point, which may be a holiday or company anniversary. During such periods, product prices are usually reduced to attract massive sales. It is easy to track an item and later get notified via the dedicated email. This can be done by putting items in the cart and leaving them there for a significant time. Retailers usually have plugins that notify them of the product and may provide notification regarding the price reduction of the item. The dedicated mail also prevents data breaching by unauthorized individuals because it is only used for online shopping (M & R, 2019). It creates a diversion from accessing personal data through marketing mails as one will be able to identify fake senders in the primary email.
Lastly, various cashback sites provide clients with a certain amount of cash after purchasing products from the referred retailer. Cashback sites require one to use their referral links when purchasing so that they can get paid by the retailer (Taylor, 2020). The company gives a certain percentage of the amount they get for referral to the client. Cashback sites provide an easy way of reducing the cost of purchasing. When using these sites, safety can be enhanced by using updated browsers with dedicated security features to identify legit sites and provide scam alerts (Griffith, 2020). Updated browsers prevent one from accessing sites that will make data vulnerable to theft.
In conclusion, it is necessary to have ways of saving money in online shopping while maintaining personal data security. There are several ways of saving money online while maintaining the security of personal information. First, performing comparison shopping on various retailers’ websites identifies sellers with low prices in the market. This can be done when VPN is on to create a secure connection that prevents data loss or unauthorized access. Second, discounted gift cards reduce product costs; their security is achieved by avoiding purchases from unknown sellers. Third, signing up for an email list provides one with cut-price offers. Its security is attained by using an active antivirus program to detect malware mails. Fourth, leveraging credit card use enables one to get offers from retailers and credit card providers. Its security is attained using a one-time pin, making it challenging to identify primary credit card numbers. Fifth, the waiting game enables one to save a significant amount of money since it is for big sales with enormous discounts. Data protection is done by setting up dedicated shopping emails, preventing hackers from accessing personal data. Lastly, using cashback sites helps reduce the cost of online shopping through money returns. Data safety is attained by using updated browsers that block access to sites that pose a significant threat to data.
Aseri, A. (2021). Security issues for online shoppers. International Journal of Scientific & Technology Research, 10(3), 112-116.
Farxodovich, R., ugli, S., & Akramovich, G. (2022). The security of shopping online. Journal of Academic Research and Trends in Educational Sciences, 1(6), 47-52.
Foster, B. (2021). 11 Ways to Save Money When Shopping Online – Tips & Tricks. Moneycrashers.com.
Griffith, E. (2020). 14 Tips for Safe Online Shopping. PCMAG.
M, R., & R, S. (2019). Consumer awareness about privacy and security risk for online shopping. International Journal of Trend in Scientific Research and Development, 3(3), 394-397.
Taylor, A. (2020). 7 Ways to Save Money When Shopping Online. Kiplinger.
Tips to Safe Online Shopping. kaspersky. (2022).