Everyone wants to know how to get free stuff, right?
At HomeWorkingClub, we’re firm believers in the fact that saving money is often as good as (if not better than) earning it. The techniques in this article on how to get free stuff online work regularly and consistently, and can be a great complement to the home working lifestyle.
Bringing up four children on my own has taught me to hunt for every possible bargain and save money wherever I can. With all the youngsters now having flown the nest, I have more time to take advantage of all the work from home opportunities that come my way – but I’m still on a constant mission to find out how to get free stuff – and often see useful items land on my doormat.
Searching out bargains and offers doesn’t make me hard cash – but this activity can subsidise my income quite substantially. If I can take advantage of bargains and promotions and save some of my weekly earned income, that to me it’s as good as earning extra money.
With that in mind, here are some of my suggestions for saving while earning to make your income go that bit further.
While some of them may seem like mere common sense, the extra few minutes you spend can lead to large savings in the long term – and they’re often steps you might forget if you are in a hurry
How to get free stuff with product testing
You are usually asked to fill in a series of surveys and are then matched with products and services. This isn’t about getting you regular paid work – this article is about how to get free stuff – and that’s what product testing is all about.
For example, a washing detergent or diaper test could give you enough free products to use for several weeks if not months. So, put aside the money you have saved by not buying the product and you could soon have a nice little pot of cash for a rainy day or a treat.
I have been product testing for several years now and have received everything from porridge mix to £100-worth of vouchers to buy school uniform. I have even “tested” an all-inclusive holiday!
In return for your product, you will usually be asked to write a short review or fill in a questionnaire. In some cases, you will be asked to put links to the product on your social media pages. You may also be given money-off coupons so that friends and family can also try the products.
As an added bonus, some product tests also offer further prize incentives for the best review. Sometimes you can win something extra due to a prize draw. Personally, I have added to my haul of freebies several times in this way. If you have no need for the prizes you can always sell them on or keep them for presents. Whichever you do you can either make or save money!
How to get free stuff from mystery shopping
Not all mystery shopping tasks mean leaving your home. Many ask you to use company websites or ask questions via their online chat facilities. (It’s also well worth looking at website testing opportunities such as UserTesting and UsabilityHub).
Other tasks might include making phone calls for advice and assistance. You are usually asked to fill in a report of your experiences online. Rewards for these tasks can vary, but in my experience they are mostly in the form of shopping vouchers.
I have quite a reputation amongst my friends for never paying full price for anything. When I want to make a purchase, I will hunt out what I need, then put some time aside to find it cheaper.
There are lots of voucher code sites to be found and the discounts they offer can vary considerably. You sometimes have to try out several to find one that works, as they often go out of date quite quickly or are only available to a limited number of customers. There’s also an increasing trend for services like Pouch, which help you find voucher codes automatically while you shop online. Some retailers also have codes within their own sites, as well as incentives such as free postage or a free gift if you spend a certain amount. Whilst these are obviously there to tempt you into spending more, you can use them to your advantage if you have several things to buy.
Everything from a takeaway to a large electrical purchase can be an opportunity to benefit from a voucher code. Sometimes, though not always, you can use more than one code on the same purchase giving you an even bigger saving.
I like to mindfully put all of my “money off” savings aside and watch them grow.
Using cashback sites is a simple and profitable way to make a bit of money whenever you make a purchase. Amounts can range from pennies on a pizza to much larger amounts for things like insurance or a mobile phone contract.
You’ll find a detailed review of TopCashback here.
You simply register with your chosen site, then instead of going directly to websites for something you want to purchase, you click through via the cashback site. Your purchase is tracked and you receive your item or service direct from the retailer. The cashback you have earned can later be claimed back from the cashback site.
A word of caution: Some retailers take a long time to pay the money in, so you can be waiting weeks if not months for your cash back.
Your earnings can be withdrawn as cash or shopping vouchers. It’s usually worth a bit more if you take the voucher option. Most sites also give extra incentives if you refer a friend to the site.
Your weekly supermarket shop
If, like me, the thought of a weekly trip to a large supermarket fills you with dread, then online grocery shopping is definitely for you. Quite apart from avoiding the stress of driving there, parking and fighting your way through the crowds, you are also likely to save a considerable amount avoiding the temptations that face you in the aisles.
Most supermarkets offer money off coupons and free delivery incentives to tempt new customers – so if you shop around you can save quite a lot of cash. Once you have exhausted all the offers they have, switch to another supermarket – believe me when I say it won’t be long until they are all trying to tempt you back with further deals!
If you do decide to stick with one store investigate if they offer a delivery saver deal – if you order regularly you will soon recoup the cost and make significant savings.
Another tip that has saved me a lot of cash is to only shop from what’s on offer. Unless you have dietary requirements or fussy eaters in the family, you can save a considerable amount by just shopping from the offer section.
That concludes today’s advice on how to get free stuff and save money online. Most of these suggestions take little time or effort but can add up to a considerable saving over a few months – especially if you make a point of putting away everything you save.
Further reading: check out why saving money is better than earning it.