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Do you love shopping online? It seems like most of Australia does, with shoppers spending about $16.7 billion on purchases via the internet over the past year.

Although it may be more convenient shopping from the comfort of your own home, it can end up costing you more when you factor in shipping and if you are constantly impulse buying. Whether you are a serious online shopper or just a casual browser, listed below are just a few tips to help you make the most of your time and money.

Use coupons

There are a large number of online deal and voucher websites that can help save you money online. So, before you go ahead and hit the 'buy' button, search a few different voucher websites and you may find a better deal. All the Deals has a range of vouchers for food and drink, beauty and experiences.

Follow on social media

Companies love connecting with their customers on social media. In order to help grow the number of followers, companies often have sales and discounts that they only advertise on social media. They also usually keep their followers up to date with the latest news such as new product ranges.

Comparison websites

Comparison shopping websites can help you compare prices from a range of different businesses. This is a great way to find the best deal, however, these websites do not always check every website for the best price, so although it is a good starting point, don't forget to do your own research too. You can compare lots items via comparison sites including insurance, home loans and credit cards.           

Free shipping

Even if you find a website that offers a better deal on a product, you may find that the shipping costs negates the savings. It is worth doing your homework and shopping around to see what different companies charge for shipping. Some have regular sales where they offer free shipping and others may not even charge shipping at all.

Read the fine print

It is important to read the company's terms and conditions before buying. When you buy in store, it is easy to return or exchange an item, however with online shopping, you may have to spend money on postage to send the item back. If you are buying clothes online, make sure you check whether they have a sizing chart on the website so that you can get as close to your size as possible.

With many Australians being time poor, the idea of shopping online whenever and wherever you want is extremely appealing and the range of products you can buy online is continually expanding. For example, at State Custodians you are able to apply for a home loan online from start to finish. We have a range of online tools, such as the Online Pre-approval, finance calculators and the Online Application to help you get started. This way, you are able to apply for a home loan at a time that suits you. But our Lending Specialist team is there with you every step of the way if you need help. If you are interested in finding out more about State Custodians home loans, our Lending Specialists can help. Give them a call on 13 72 62 or enter your details here for someone to contact you.