Money Saving

Go Frugal With Discounted Gift Cards

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How would you like to get a discount on almost every purchase you make?  One man’s junk is another man’s treasure and for every person who has unwanted gift cards, there is someone like you who would like to buy that unwanted card at a discount that is sometimes quite substantial.

Gift Card Granny is a one-stop shopping place for people looking to sell unwanted gift cards and frugal people looking to save on everything ranging from dinner at their favorite restaurant to appliances at Sears.  Gift Card Granny lists thousands of gift cards from a multitude of vendors who offer discounted cards for sale.  For the more popular stores such as Walmart, the discounted cards may offer just a few percentage points off the price of a regular gift card.  However, for other gift cards, it is not unusual to see them available for sale at well over 20%.

For those who like to shop online, many of the discounted “gift cards” are simply e-codes you buy which are then sent to your email.  After you receive the e-code you simply use the discounted e-code and PIN number to complete your purchase at your favorite online store.  Gift Card Granny also lists companies that mail out physical gift cards.  Most of the companies offer free shipping.  For the other companies who do charge a nominal fee for shipping, Gift Card Granny will list the shipping fee.

Like anything else, it must become a habit to make most of your purchases with a discounted gift card.  Initially, you might even forget you have a discounted card and pay with your credit card as usual.  But once you get into the habit of using gift cards as payment, you will actually find it loathsome when you have to pull out cash or a credit card and pay full price for an item.  Great bargains are only a few finger clicks away for frugal shoppers who make their way to Gift Card Granny.

The 3 Best Stock Trading Apps

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There are several new apps for stock trading directly from your mobile device. A few of the most popular ones are Robinhood, Acorns, and Stash Invest. They are all available on Android and iOS. Let’s take a look at some of the best stock trading apps.

Robinhood is known for its easy to use interface and award-winning design. It has won awards in both the Google Play Store and the Apple Store. Other pros of Robinhood are that it doesn’t require a lot of money to get started with trading. Once you make money through the app it is easy to transfer from the app directly into your checking account. On the con side, having to wait till your earnings are listed as settled before you can transfer them to your account can cause key opportunities to be missed. If you want to reinvest and you have to wait 3 days for your earnings to post, you may miss something. Many of these stock trading apps work in similar ways. There is a good how-to article with screenshots on businessinsider.com.

The Acorns app is based on investing spare change. When you make a purchase using your linked checking account,  the total is rounded up to the next dollar and used to invest. There are only 5 portfolios to choose from, though. The fees are relatively low at $1 a month for accounts under $5000 and .25% for those over $5000. Depending on how much you make though the fees can be high. If you are not making more than a few dollars a month then  the $1 a month fee can seem kind of steep.

With Stash Invest, you can start investing with as little as $5 in your account. The site allows you to choose your investment options but will give recommendations. Stash Invest gives the choice of 30 or more investments. Their fees are the same as Acorns’ fees.

When choosing a mobile app to use for investing, be sure to read the fine print on fees and disclaimers. It’s a good idea to read through the app store reviews as well.

This Post Contains Affiliate Links.

 

What types of rewards programs are there?

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Rewards programs are available nearly every place you shop (even at some of your favorite Foodie Places). Whether it’s at the mall, at the grocery store, or on your phone, rewards programs help save you money as you shop, play, and surf the web.

1) Phone rewards- Apps such as Lucktastic and Google Play Rewards offer money for a few seconds of your time a day. Lucktastic is a lottery game where scratch off cards offer points as winnings. After so many points, they can be cashed in for items such as gift cards and sweepstakes entries. Google Play Rewards, run by Google itself, offers rewards for surveys based on location, shopping habits, and even opinion. Rewards vary in amount, and can be used to purchase items in the Google Play Store.

2) In-store rewards: To bring in more customers, some stores offer instant reward dollars after so much money is spent on their products. Stores such as Victoria’s Secret, Torrid, and Kohl’s offer deals year-round that can then be used to reduce the out-of-pocket expense of shoppers later on in the year.

3) Credit rewards: These stores also offer reward points based on money spent using store-issued credit cards. Points are often issued so many per dollar, and after a certain amount of points are collected, the cardholder may receive a voucher in the mail to use on their next visit to the store.

4) Gas rewards: Supermarkets and supercenters that have connections with gas stations often offer a reward card that, while taking cents and dollars off of products in the store, also takes cents off at the pump. Kroger’s shopping card, issued free, gives points according to dollars spent, much like credit reward cards. After so many dollars are spent per month, shoppers can take off more per gallon at the gas station.

There are hundreds of rewards programs across the internet. While it seems like just another card to keep up with, participating in reward programs can ultimately save hundreds, even thousands, of dollars per year– just for swiping a card.

3 Delicious Rewards Programs for Your Foodie Needs

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As much as anyone would love a good home-cooked meal, eating out and ordering fast food has become increasingly popular. Wouldn’t it be nice to get more for your hard-earned money? We think so, and that is why we have found 3 rewards programs that will make your wallet happy.

Papa Rewards: Do you like Papa John’s or pizza in general? If so, then this is the rewards program for you! Their motto is “Order. Eat. Earn. Repeat,” which is literally you get to do. Basically, you create an account and enroll in Papa Rewards. Afterwards, you will earn 1 point for every $5 you spend when you order online. For 10 points, you can get a chocolate chip cookie, cheese sticks, or garlic knots. For 20-30 points, you can get a free large pizza.

Piece of the Pie Rewards: Yes, another pizza rewards program. This time it is by none other than Domino’s! Similar to Papa Rewards, you will have to create an account and enroll in their reward program. Every online order of $10 or more will earn you 10 points (only one order per calendar day can earn points). Once you earn 60 points, you can redeem them for a free medium 2-topping pizza.

Subway Rewards: Subway Rewards requires you to get a Subway Card and to load money on it. Each time you swipe your card in-store, you will earn 1 point per $1 spent. You will even get 25 free points just for signing up, and you can opt in to receive a free birthday goody along with bonus offers. You can redeem your points for a variety of treats, such as a cookie, chips, drinks, or even subs. Not bad, right?

Tell me about the reward programs you use.

Rewards Programs are Essential to Keeping Customers Coming Back.

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Rewards programs are something that I take advantage of whenever possible. They are an incentive for me to continue using a company’s product. You will find reward programs with various credit card companies, restaurants, and clothing stores, to name a few. It is a great marketing tool to keep you coming back for more. Essentially, it is like training a dog. If you want the dog to sit, you must give the dog a treat if it obeys a command. No, I am not likening humans to dogs, but if you think about it, we enjoy treats too and if we buy, just as the dog sits, we get a treat.
I am especially drawn in by the awards that I receive via email or mail, that award me $15 off if I redeem $15 or more in the store or online. From the comfort of my home, I go to their website, shop a while and secure the deal. Sometimes you can save more by going to the store and buying there to avoid shipping and handling.
There are also “cash back” awards where you earn pennies on the dollar each time you use your credit card. Again, this is a nice treat after logging in to pay a credit card bill and see that you have earned $5.86 in reward money that you can use towards your payment. Not to dampen the spirit of rewards, but if all you do is charge and pay the minimum, they are happy to give you $5.86 as they take $25.00 in interest from you each month. Make sure you do your math when choosing credit cards and the interest rates associated with them.

E-coupons are better than coupon clipping

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For those who found that the majority of their sales are to people who shop online, it is ideal you improve your online reward system. However, if a larger portion of your business is conducted in person, then an in-store reward system may be the way to go. Luckily, there is flexibility in your decision making, with respect to the requirements your business as well as the setup of your merchant processor.
Clipping coupons is a regular task for people who are often looking for new deals. Together with the development of digital cash-saving programs, like print- at-home and cashback apps, more and more of the people are simply turning to using coupons to cut costs on their shopping.
According to studies, it is forecasted that there will be tremendous growth in the number of mobile coupon users. But, the question now is: what will be the reason for this growth and what does it means for cash-savers?
Customer expectations and technological improvements are the drivers of this trend. The growth of cash-savers in the world has continued to grow for the past couple of years. Nine out of 10 of us ‘believe it is great to be frugal’ and two thirds of shoppers won’t make a purchase before looking for a discount online.
What impact will digital coupons make on cash-savers?
It’s projected that coupons worth $350 Billion are printed on a yearly basis and nearly 99% of them were never redeemed.
The most probable reasons for this are unwanted and forgotten scrap of papers.
It’s a gigantic shame to realize why these savings are not utilized, but the growth in digital redemption would support reducing these figures.
In America, where this technology is broadly used, mobile coupons have a 10% redemption rate – which implies that more individuals are saving.
Ease-of-use, audience accessibility, and fraud detection are a number of the key ways those involved are benefiting. The progress in technological advancement has made couponing more accessible and lots of brands release coupons.
Other good benefits of digital coupons are that you wouldn’t forget to always take them with you and you wouldn’t have to travel to as-many stores or supermarkets to redeem your as-many coupons.
However, technology continues to be a concern for a number of shoppers like 68 year old grandmother of seven, Natalia Hunt, who said: “I’d still favor the paper ones, better to organize. It is simple and fast to make use of them. So, why change that?”