Pardon me for perpetuating stereotypes here, but I love shopping. Sometimes, I like to keep a browser window open with a pair of good looking designer shoes, or perhaps a page full of sale items, just so that I can dream about having enough disposable cash to blow through a whole rack at Bloomingdale's. But that's just a dream, and most of my shopping is done inside a grocery store, at a farmer's market, or at the drug store down the street from where I live. Fortunately, there are a ton of apps, both online and on a variety of mobile devices, that can aid in finding the best deals, so that I'm always getting more bang for my buck. That, my friends, is the true reward of shopping.
Invisible Hand isn't a desktop application, but a browser extension that works with both Safari, Chrome and Firefox, so you can keep an "invisible hand" on all the best deals online. The way this works is that whenever you're on one of the 55 retail websites that the extension supports (for example, Amazon.com), InsibileHand will discreetly notify you that the product you want to buy is cheaper somewhere else. Similarly, if the online retailer you're at is actually offering the best price, then "the hand" will let you know to go for it.
InvisibleHand also has a few other noted features that make it more than just a price fetcher. It displays real-time prices, so you're not looking at old data, and it works with Google search to direct you to the best deal. Additionally, it learns what you like to buy, which is sort of like having your own personal shopper built into your browser.
I use this website every time I go online to purchase something. RetialMeNot is an online coupon library that shows you the latest coupons available at almost every online retailer you could think of--it even worked for this small, independent clothing website that I shop at from time to time. RetailMeNot can find things like: discounts, vouchers for free shipping, or any buy-one-get-one deals that you can take advantage of. Check it out!
If you love posting things to your Facebook wall at a rapid pace, and making wish lists of things you'd love to purchase, than this is an app worth considering. SeeScanLike enables you to scan the barcode or snap a photo of something you like, such as a pair of shoes, or even an apartment building you'd love to live in, and the app saves it to an album and gives you the option of sharing it. You can also view the things you've tracked down on a map, so you'll know exactly where you were when you "liked" something.
Bonus: Grocery IQ
Ahh, yes. Everyone loves grocery shopping--just don't do it when you're voraciously hungry. The Grocery IQ app makes grocery shopping a little more exciting with the ability to build quick grocery lists, share them, add items to a favorites list, retrieve product details and create different lists for multiple stores. You can also scan the barcodes of any grocery item to find out a bit more information about it.
PriceGrabber iPad edition
The power of PriceGrabber will compel you, and it's a nifty way to do some shopping on your iPad. PriceGrabber enables you to find the lowest price on a huge selection of products, from your favorite online retailers. You can look for products, compare prices at other sites, read the reviews, get product specifications and view ratings. So, if you're a shopaholic like your fellow editor here, I encourage that you put this on your iPad now.
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