With inflation on the rise, everyone is looking for ways to save money on their purchases, whether they be one-off big-ticket items, everyday essentials or gifts throughout the year. The great news is that you don't have to settle for the first price you see with alternative retailers potentially offering a better deal. But how can you make searching for the best prices easy?
There are a bunch of apps and browser extensions that make tracking down the best prices possible. Whether it's a direct discount or coupon deal, the options below will help you save both time and money when shopping online.
If you're interested in more money-saving tips, check out our guides on avoiding shipping fees, finding Amazon coupons and getting the most out of your Costco membership.
Here at CNET, we've got our very own browser extension for Chrome that helps you get the best prices on your favorite products: CNET Shopping. Our extension uses technology previously implemented by popular services Invisible Hand and PriceBlink -- both of which are owned by CNET's parent company Red Ventures but are being phased out following CNET Shopping's launch.
If you're after a specific product, you can use CNET Shopping to search across thousands of supported retailers for the lowest price, or you can use it to receive alerts and let the discounts come to you -- and it's free to use.
Payment processing company Klarna acquired browser extension Piggy and relaunched it under the Klarna name. It still allows you to find the lowest prices available and automatically applies coupons and cash-back options at checkout. The extension works at over 20,000 online stores including Macy's, eBay, Walmart and Nike.
Honey can automatically scan for and apply eligible coupons while you shop online and track prices on items that you add to your Droplist, alerting you if they meet your desired price. It also offers a neat Amazon tool that can compare prices between Amazon-sold items and those from Amazon's third-party sellers and other online retailers, factoring in estimated shipping costs and Prime status to find the best deal.
And since Honey is owned by PayPal, as you shop using the extension you'll rack up PayPal Rewards (assuming you have a PayPal account to link with). These can be redeemed for cash, gift cards or PayPal shopping credits. While it might take a while to accrue enough PayPal Rewards to turn into something you can spend, it's another way to save on future purchases.
Similar to both Honey and CNET Shopping, Pricescout can find coupon codes for you, while also comparing prices across different retailers. While you're shopping, it scans the sites of over 21,000 retailers and will pop up with better prices.
Rakuten, formerly known as Ebates, is an e-commerce site that gives customers cash-back for shopping. Former CNET editor Rick Broida described it as "easy to use and comes with no strings attached." Rakuten, however, does collect data about where you shop and what you buy.
Available for Chrome, Firefox, Edge and Safari, the Rakuten browser extension alerts you when cash-back savings are available and saves you the detour to Rakuten's site when actively purchasing. It sometimes finds coupon codes for you as well and there are even some ways to save in-store.
Like many other browser extensions on this list, Slickdeals shows customers the best deals, coupons and cash-back options available at the time of purchase from the online retailers that support it.
Cently for Chrome
Cently, formerly known as Coupons at Checkout, is a Chrome extension that finds coupon codes for thousands of online retailers and shows you the best ones at checkout. Cently also has a feature called Amazon Best Price, which tells you when a product is cheaper from another Amazon seller.
Amazon Assistant for Chrome
If you're an Amazon fanatic, you'll love this extension. The Amazon Assistant for Chrome is Amazon's official browser extension. It finds you the Deal of the Day, offers product and price comparisons and saves products from any website to your Amazon wish list.
The Camelizer from Camelcamelcamel
Most savvy shoppers know that shopping at certain times can snag you the best deals. The Camelizer is an extension that shows you the price history of an item you're browsing on Amazon to help you decide whether to buy now or wait for a better deal. It will also send you price drop alerts via email or Twitter, and you can import your Amazon wish list so that you'll know when your heart's desire goes on sale.
Ibotta is another cash-back service with a browser extension for Chrome, Edge and Firefox. As well as getting a fraction of your online or in-store purchases back, it also has a neat ability to notify you when a product, like the Xbox Series X, PlayStation 5 or Nintendo Switch OLED are restocked, thanks to the company's acquisition of OctoShop.
RetailMeNot's Deal Finder browser extension automatically applies the best available discount codes and cash-back options at checkout. The extension is supported by more than 20,000 retailers, including Target, Macy's, Lenovo and DoorDash. CNET has been singing the tool's praises since 2010 for making online coupon hunting less annoying.
Offers.com is a place to check for special deals such as free shipping, buy-one-get-one-free and other perks that can save you money when shopping online. This Firefox extension also finds coupon codes. When it finds a code, it saves it for you and adds it to your shopping cart. The extension also opens another browser page and displays all of the sales for the site you're viewing, so you never miss a great deal.
User reviews give you an idea of the quality of a product before you buy. The problem is, many companies hire people to post good reviews for bad products on sites like Amazon. Fakespot is an extension that analyzes reviews to see which ones are baloney and which you can trust so you're less likely to waste your money on a dud.
CouponCabin is different from other money-saving browser extensions because it gives you little tips every time you do a search on Google, whether you're wanting to buy or not. Say you're Googling information on the latest Stephen King book. CouponCabin will give you a little alert in your search results that it's on sale. You can also earn 10% cash back by using this extension.
The ShopSavvy app uses your phone's camera to scan barcodes to find the best price from physical and digital retailers. Its website also offers "Best Time to Buy" guides, which chart price fluctuations on products like computers, cameras and televisions over the past 90 days.
ShopSavvy is free to download in the App Store and the Play store, and it has a free browser extension for Chrome, Edge and Safari.
Looking for more ways to save? Take a look at our guide to couponing the right way and common mistakes to avoid at Amazon.