Why pay list price? Especially now, when you're probably watching every penny? One of the best ways to get a deal on anything is to use a coupon. But instead of searching around the house for scissors and chopping up circulars, check out these 18 online services that give you what you need to save you cash on your next purchase.
Adpera It might not provide coupons in the conventional sense, but Adpera finds the best e-mail ads from retailers and displays them on the site. From designer sportswear to shoes and housewares, Adpera's selection is incredible. And searching for and finding deals is made simple with the help of a prominent search box at the top of the page. Adpera is basically one big spam folder. But instead of annoying you, it actually saves you some cash.
CoolSavings If you're looking for a full-featured site that includes both printable and online coupons from retailers on a wide range of disciplines, CoolSavings is for you. The site offers coupons for companies that you might have never heard of, and some that that are probably right down the street. The sheer quantity of coupons on CoolSavings is amazing. Unfortunately, though, CoolSavings' collection of free coupons isn't that helpful. In order to access the more sought-after deals, you'll need to sign up for the site. Once you do, you'll be happy: from personal finance to groceries, there are coupons for everything on CoolSavings.
Coupious Coupious is one of the coolest services in this roundup. A mobile app, it can be installed on your iPhone, iPod Touch, or Android-based phone. With the help of those devices' location services, it actively searches for businesses around your location and finds coupons while you're on the go. I've tried it on numerous occasions and have been amazed at its speed and relevance. Once you're ready to use one of the coupons it finds, you need only to click "Use now" and you're all set. And it's free.
CouponAlbum CouponAlbum is huge. That's the best way to describe it. Unlike some services that specialize in a particular area, CouponAlbum wants to be your one-stop shop for everything that's on sale right now. Whether it's software, toys, sporting goods, or food, the site has it all. And since it's updated weekly, you'll never run out of deals.
CouponCabin When I'm looking to save a few bucks, one of my first destinations is always CouponCabin. Unlike other sites that throw any company's deal at you, CouponCabin sticks to major stores like Target, Walmart, GameStop, and a few others. All the coupons are up-to-date and new deals are placed on the site every week. And since you can search by company or category, you probably won't miss a single deal at the places you frequent.
CouponGood If you're an online shopper, CouponGood is a good first place to check before you decide to buy something. The site provides coupons for online companies exclusively. With the help of a simple design, it makes it easy to find any deal you're looking for. Simply input the URL of a company that you're considering buying from and the site will see if it has any active coupons available. Based on my testing, every site I searched for had at least one active coupon, ranging from free shipping to 20 percent discounts. And since the site's free, you'll only need to click a link or input a code at checkout to activate it.
CouponMom CouponMom is targeted at, you guessed it, mothers, but I'm not sure it's even worth trying out. The site requires you to sign up and promises big deals, but when I used it, I quickly realized it couldn't compete on any level with Coupons.com. It's an alternative if for some reason you don't like Coupons.com.
Coupons.com When you're getting ready to go to the local supermarket or grocery, go to Coupons.com before you leave. The site offers a variety of printable coupons on goods ranging from food to cleaning supplies and they're available for use anywhere the products are sold. I use Coupons.com each week and I save myself at least $10 in grocery costs during that time. It's an extremely useful site that's designed well and makes it easy to find coupons. It's a must-see.
CouponsDealuxe CouponsDealuxe doesn't provide the sheer quantity of deals that you'll find on sites like Coupons.com or CouponsAlbum, but the site does do a nice job of finding tech deals. In fact, it's filled with software and hardware coupons. But since there are so many other sites that provide the same coupons in packages designed much better, I'm not convinced CouponsDealuxe should be on your radar. Editors' note: this blog originally misspelled CouponsDealuxe.
CouponTweet If you've been searching Twitter to find deals, CouponTweet offers to do the heavy lifting for you. The service allows you to tell it what kind of deals you'd like to receive. It then searches around Twitter to find deals. When it does, it lets you know via a tweet. So far, the selection isn't all that great, but that could change if more people use Twitter to promote deals. I guess we'll have to wait and see. Currently it's in private beta.
DealDivine DealDivine is unique in the coupon space. Instead of simply putting as many coupons on the site as possible, it applies a Digg-like engine that lets users vote on which coupons are best. There's just one problem: there aren't that many coupons and the site's few users are not active. But when there are coupons placed on the service, they're usually valuable.
DealLinker Much like DealDivine, DealLinker uses a Digg-like voting mechanism to help users find coupons and deals. The site lists the latest coupons in products ranging from groceries to electronics. Based on the quality of the deal and how much savings it provides, users vote it up or down. DealLinker's handy filtering tool makes it easy to find coupons based on when they were made available, or find those that have the best rating. Even better, the site has a more active user base than DealDivine, so you'll have a better sense of what's good and what's not.
FatWallet As soon as you go to FatWallet, you'll be shocked by how much information is packed on its home page. From cash back shopping to a coupon search, you'll find anything you need on FatWallet. And while you can easily click through different links to find coupons on FatWallet, the best way to find them is through that search feature. I searched for a variety of companies and each time, a coupon was displayed that was both valid and worth using. And because it requires keywords to help you through the search, simply inputting "Apple" will give you all the deals that are available from places like the Apple Store and third-party retailers like MacMall. That said, there are only 2,500 retailers supported on FatWallet, so you might be hoping for more. But in my experience, I was perfectly satisfied with its offering.
RetailMeNot If you're looking for coupon codes and you enjoy tag clouds, RetailMeNot is for you. The site's coupon selection is ample and includes codes for online retailers like eBay, Amazon, and others. And although I'm not usually fond of tag clouds, I found that it worked quite well on RetailMeNot and helped me find the kind of products I was looking for.
SavingPiggy You won't be impressed by the quantity of stores SavingPiggy supports. In fact, the site has the fewest of any service in this roundup. But for what it lacks in quantity, it makes up for in quality. The site's coupons come from major retailers like Amazon and the Apple store, so it doesn't waste your time with companies that you'll probably never buy products from anyway. But I did find one issue with the site: it still has Circuit City rebates listed on its coupons page.
ShopLocal ShopLocal provides all the weekly ads companies offer and gives you access to them so you can flip through them and find some deals. Though you can find that elsewhere, ShopLocal goes one better: it automatically finds your location and fills you in on all the deals in your area. From groceries to electronics, the site has it all. In fact, it found that there were 19,543 active deals in my town alone.
Shortcuts Shortcuts, which is owned by AOL, is one of the best coupon sites on the Web. Similar to Coupons.com, the site provides manufacturer coupons for free in a design that's superior to most of the other sites in this roundup. The sheer number of coupons is enough to get you to Shortcuts, but once you get there, you quickly realize that if you don't want to leave the site to try out others, you'll be perfectly fine--it has the best coupons and user experience of any coupon site.
Valpak Much like ShopLocal, Valpak adds an element of community to the service. Instead of searching for specific coupons as soon as you get to the site, Valpak asks you to input your city and state or zip code. Once you do, it delivers all the coupons in your area for any product you can think of. I searched for my area and found thousands of coupons and deals. That said, all of the coupons available on Valpak need to be printed out and brought to the store, so don't expect any online deals.