Groupon can be a polarizing website: on one hand, you can score some great deals on travel, electronics, dining, and more. On the other, it can tempt you to buy a lot of things that you probably don’t need (which might be one of the reasons it’s experiencing a bit of a decline).
If you are a fan of Groupon, though, and you want to get the most out of it, there are a few lesser-known features that you should be taking advantage of. And if you’ve become disenchanted with the social couponing scene, these could convince you to come back. At your own risk!
Shopping sales and clearance sections are a great way to save money on your favorite shopping sites, but did you know that Groupon also has a clearance section? It’s unclear exactly how it works — whether companies intentionally list their deals there or if they’re put there if they don’t sell well — but you can find some pretty great deals. A quick look at the Denver deals revealed a luggage set at 80% off, some decently nice-looking watches for 70% off, and a pair of $25 men’s dress shoes (certainly not the highest-quality shoes, but they’ll work for a first interview!).
As with every other Groupon section, you never know what you’ll find here, but if you’re looking for something specific, it’s worth stopping here first. Use the search bar to see if you can find a clearance deal on what you’re looking for before heading to the main site, and you might be surprised at what you find! As always, be sure to check if you’re actually getting a good deal here or not. Just because it’s in the clearance section doesn’t mean you’re saving a ton of money, especially if it’s something you wouldn’t have bought anyway.
Outlet Store Deals
Much like using Groupon, shopping at outlet stores can be a good way to save money if you know what you’re doing (many outlets simply sell lower-quality products to make you think you’re getting a great deal). If you’re ever planning on going to an outlet store, check Groupon first to see if you can nab a coupon to help you save a bit more money. When I checked the outlet store deals this morning, Puma, Crabtree & Evelyn, Tablots, and True Religion all had coupons that would save you more money — some were percentage-off coupons, and others were flat dollar amounts.
There was also a free Audible membership, which is a great way to save money on audiobooks, but why it was located in the outlet store deals section I couldn’t say. Again, be scrupulous when you’re looking at these deals; if they’re tempting you to spend money you weren’t already planning on spending, don’t grab them. If you’re definitely hitting up an outlet store for some shopping, though, be sure to stop by this section to save a little extra.
You can get coupon codes all over the Internet, including from some really useful browser extensions, but did you know that you can get them from Groupon, too?
Unfortunately, this section of the site is full of a lot of stuff that should really be classified as ads instead of coupons; one featured at the top today is “Book IHG Hotels Direct for Lowest Rates.” When you click on it, it says “No coupon code necessary,” and just brings you to a hotel-booking site. It’s disingenuous, and a little disappointing that Groupon would put these sorts of things in the coupon code area.
Despite this, however, you can grab a few useful ones if you search for the site you want to save on. I did manage to find, for example, coupon codes for Papa John’s, Spotify, Vans, and print services at Office Depot. As with most of Groupon, searching for the things you’re interested in will be your best bet here.
Boost Your Skills
Adding more skills to your résumé is a great way to earn more money — whether that’s programming, accounting, languages, or any sort of relevant certification you can find. Groupon’s Learning section can help you find great deals on courses that could boost your income, which is one of the most important ways you can improve your financial situation.
When I looked at the learning section, I saw a lot of interesting online courses: project management, stock trading, event-planning, Excel, fiction writing, makeup and hairstyling, nutrition, and medical billing, among others. There are tons of opportunities available, so have a look through the options and see if you find something that interests you. Some of the courses were very affordable — though that may bring their credentials into question. At the very least they’ll help you broaden your knowledge, which is always a good thing.
Your Favorite Money-Saving Strategies
Groupon is a blessing and a curse, but if you know how to take advantage of what’s available, you can make it more the former than the latter. Using the clearance, outlet, and coupon sections to save more money and using the Learning coupons to boost your skills to make more money will both help you keep your budget in the black. Surely there are other good strategies out there to get the most out of Groupon, though, and we want to hear them.
How do you make the most of Groupon’s deals? Do you use the methods listed above, or do you have your own special strategies? Share your best tips in the comments below!