Price alert sites
- How price alert sites work
- How to use price alerts to get the best deal online
- Which? research shows how much prices change
The prices of appliances and technology products can change frequently and sometimes by large amounts so price alert sites can help you find the right time to buy saving you money.
How to get the best deal
Price alert sites all work in the same basic way.
You set a price that you want to see a product fall below. The site then sends you an email when the price has fallen below that level on the sites on which it tracks prices.
Sites such as Idealo and Shopping.com track prices at major online shops. Before setting alerts, it's worth looking at a few products on each price alert site to check which sites they do and do not cover.
You might be required to sign up to each site you use which could mean receiving weekly summaries.
You need to bear in mind that you are never buying from the price alert site itself but the shop it links to. It's also worth bearing in mind that prices include VAT and delivery.
Some sites have useful price-history graphs that show how products were priced in preceding months.
These can give you an idea of longer-term trends and help you predict what might happen to prices next – enabling you to set your target price with more knowledge and take advantage of the savings.
Price comparison sites and getting discounts
Unlike price alert sites, price comparison sites only show prices at the moment you search. However, they can still lead to big savings.
It is also worth checking out our guide showing how to get discounts on products which tells you the best places to get end-of-the-line or refurbished TVs, PVRs and DVD players, reconditioned kitchen appliances, clearance mobile phones, cut price MP3 players, digital cameras, PCs and laptops. It also tells you when is the best time of year to get discounts for all those product types.
If you're in the market for baby products, have a read of our guide to discounted baby products.
Stay safe online - and what to do if it all goes wrong
Our guide to shopping safely online tells you all you need to know – including tips like checking a website is listed on Shopsafe, which lists sites that have clear delivery prices and returns policies and offer secure credit card transactions.
If things have already gone wrong, read about your rights to returning something you bought online.