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It is so fun to go outlet shopping. However, shopping can really burn a whole in your pocket if you don’t do it right. Here’s how to shop retail outlet store without spending an arm and a leg doing it.
Outlet Shopping – How to Save Money at Retail Outlet Stores
Before I dig in, I want to share with you how I am making money shopping with Amazon FBA.
Head straight to the Clearance
Unless the retail outlet is promoting a sale, the clearance section won’t be right at the front of the store. I can usually spot it out from the front, but sometimes you have to go in a little further. Head straight to the back of the store and look for red. Try not to look anywhere else, except for the red clearance signs. Shop clearance and if you can, get out of the store without shopping from regular racks.
Sign Up for the Savings
Many retail outlets offer awesome saving memberships and rewards programs. If the store clerk doesn’t offer it, ask about it. I save hundreds of dollars every year signing up for things like mPerks and Shop Your Way Rewards. So, if you want to get discounts on future purchases or coupons in the mail, ask the clerk about their rewards program.
Use your Credit Card to Save Money
I want to start this one off by saying do NOT sign up for every store card. If you have one store you shop at most often (at least once a month) then a store card might work. I had a Target Red card until they offered the red card as a debit card for your checking and now I have that instead of the credit card.
If you can get a credit card and get 15-20% off your total purchase, do it. BUT, pay it off that week or right after your purchase. If you wait until the interest builds up on your credit card to pay it, you have not saved any money. Most stores offer a credit card for their specific store, and you can get a savings just for signing up. Some places like Kohl’s even offer you Kohl’s cash for you using your credit card.
Your need good credit in this world and using a credit card responsibly is a good way to build it. Six Dollar Family tells you why you need a good credit score even if you are debt free.
If you are looking to rebuild your credit, I suggest Credit Sesame to watch your credit and build your score.
Start at the Least Expensive Store
If you are looking for a certain item, start looking at the least expensive stores first. Work your way through the stores until you find what you are looking for. It may take a little extra time, but working your way through the least expensive stores is a great way to save money.
Look for Coupons
Before I even step into a retail outlet, I do a quick search on my phone for store coupons. Many retail outlets will have coupons that can be scanned right from your phone. Look for coupons that offer 15-20% off a single item or your entire purchase. But make sure to read the fine print. Stores like Carter's and Osh Kosh don't allow you to use coupons on clearance.
Use Gift Cards
Many of the places I get my free Amazon gift cards from also offer many other places to redeem gift cards, and many of them are retail outlets! To maximize your gift cards follow the tips above (and the one below) before using your gift cards.
I use Receipt Pal you can upload ANY receipt. Gas, grocery, dry cleaners, lunch, pet food anything and for every 4 receipts you earn points. Trade your points in for Amazon Gift Cards. I also use Receipt Hog, but they are a bit pickier on the receipts they take, but it never hurts to try!
Shopping at retail outlets is a fun way to enjoy the day. What other tips do you have for shopping at retail outlets? Share your tips in the comments below!
I am a mom to 5 kids, homeschool mom, blogger, social media junkie, Frugalista, Book Worm, and Closet Want-to-be Chef. We are a Roadschool family (homeschooling on the road while traveling fulltime).
I grew up learning ways to save from my mom and grandma. I started my own coupon journey when my first child was born in 2009 and started the blog on 2010 when baby #2 was born to share my tips with everyone who kept asking about how I was getting diapers for $1 a pack!
Click here to learn more about starting a blog.
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