Personal FinanceSaving Money

How to Save Money When Shopping Online

Data sourced from Statista reveals that the Canadian retail e-commerce market generated a total revenue of $40 billion in 2018. Experts expect this number to go up to $55 billion by 2023. As for actual retail sales, Canadian e-commerce companies made almost $1.6 billion last year. Fashion, travel, and household goods make up the majority of popular online shopping categories in Canada. At the same time, 18% of Canadians have admitted that they feel “very uncomfortable” making digital purchases. 

Although this reveals some hesitation towards making online payments, this has not stopped them from making use of the world’s most popular e-commerce sites and apps. Ayima’s whitepaper on The State of Canadian Ecommerce details that 77% of Canadian online shoppers use Amazon, and 21% are members of Amazon Prime. The whitepaper also notes how 28% of Canadian Amazon Prime Members are 18 to 34 years old, while those who are older make up smaller percentages of premium membership. In short, Canada loves online shopping, e-commerce customers are mostly young adults, and we can only expect online deals to get better and better at enticing and attracting customers. Understanding the current state of Canadian e-commerce is the first step towards saving money while shopping online. The next step is to ensure that you’re never paying more than you should be.

Find the Lowest Prices Using Google Shopping

You may notice now that during Google searches, a shopping category appears beside images, videos, and other options. Whatever product you’re searching for, click on Google Shopping to see which online retailers offer the same product. This is the easiest way to compare prices between different retailers.

Subscribe to Price Drop-Related E-mail Alerts

Whatever e-commerce sites you frequent most likely already send you e-mail alerts about special sale periods and other deals. See if they also offer the option to alert you about when certain products that are in your cart or “wish list” have dropped in price. This works best for expensive and necessary household appliances, which tend to have massive clearance sales at least once a year.

Compare Items Within the Same E-Commerce Sites

Sometimes, different retailers within the same e-commerce site offer the same exact item but for different prices. While the differences in product names and descriptions can be sometimes confusing, it’s always worth your time and effort to see whether or not the same item that you’re looking for is offered at a lower price by a different retailer under a different product name. Go deep and compare specifications to determine whether or not you’re paying the lowest price for a product that you’re interested in on the same website.

Set Up a Fraud Alert System and Other Ways to Prevent Theft

One of the best ways to save money online is to protect yourself from thieves. Modern thieves won’t take money from your wallet. Instead, they prefer to take your identity and use it to make purchases. Just as the many physical and electronic facets of our identity have made it easier to shop online, so have we become more vulnerable through these same modern conveniences. There are many ways to prevent this from happening to you.

• Both Equifax Canada and TransUnion Canada offer setting up a fraud alert for your credit. This means that any credit requests will need to go through you first. It’s the easiest way to prevent someone else from using your name for a loan or credit card approval.
• Just as you need to destroy your inactive credit cards, you should also unsubscribe or cancel any e-commerce, online banking, or investment accounts that you no longer use.
• Verify any website, phone, or e-mail request for information by contacting your bank or service provider.
• Review our guide to protecting yourself against identity and credit fraud here on Progressa.

By Guest Writer: JBainziger

Sam Milbrath

The author Sam Milbrath

Sam Milbrath is a freelance copywriter and brand marketer. When she isn’t writing for brands or doing her own creative writing, she’s exploring, taking photographs, gardening and doing pottery. Check out her work at