Sale SignOnline shopping is hailed for saving time and money, but does it always work out that way? Scouring dozens of different sites can become a time-consuming ordeal, as you complete exhausting research to buy that new computer or get the best deals on your holiday shopping. There has to be a better, more efficient way to use the Internet to find the best deals — and there is, of course. Deal websites do your bargain-hunting work for you by compiling information on store sales and deals, offering information on rebates and cash-back opportunities and free stuff, updating you on the latest deals on popular products, and providing you with coupons and helpful money-saving tips.

Bargainist.com

Bargainist.com

AbleShoppers.comThis site lists new deals daily and current hot picks on a range of products. There are extensive lists on tips and deals for specific items, and the sheer amount of categories is huge. The site also offers coupons for categories from electronics and auto to financial services and entertainment. You can sort for coupons by store name or product. Sign up for their special newsletter for more tips.

AnandTech.comThis site focuses on hardware analysis and industry news along with getting you the best deals. You can personalize the site for your use and read up on trade show information, tech news and the latest from the gaming and mobile worlds. Read over the latest articles on all kinds of tech issues and search for products using “real time pricing”.

Bargaineering.com — Bargaineering touts “the art of engineering great bargains.” The site offers “hot deals” in categories including clothes, travel, financial, restaurants, mobile phones, and entertainment. There’s a travel section with airfare, hotel, and cruise tips for planning a money-wise outing, and a personal finance blog with helpful tips.

Bargainist.com — Named one of Time magazine’s top 10 websites of 2006 and PC Magazine’s “Top 100 Favorite Blogs of 2007,” this site provides continuous updates on deals in a range of categories, as well as information on snagging free stuff and coupons. Money-saving tips are practical and helpful.

BensBargains.net — The site includes coupons, rebates, info on freebies, and reviews of products. There are lots of technology and entertainment products along with other categories of items, and a “Top Three Deals” list highlighting the best of what’s out there. This site has been recognized in national magazines for years of good service.

BradsDeals.comThis site is a great one for coupons, claiming to offer “an active coupon for 90% of the stores you shop at.” Thousands of coupons, lists of which ones are expiring soon, and posts of new ones, along with coupons for major stores are all on the site. There’s even the world’s first coupon for space flight. No joke.

CheapStingyBargains.com — CheapStingyBargains.com has a co-op forum that allows individual shoppers to start a community with others in order to get group discounts on high-ticket items including electronics, cars, vacations, and services. The site also gives extensive info on sales, clearances, rebates, and exclusive coupons.

CouponAlbum.com — Coupon Album offers coupons for hundreds of top0rated stores and thirty product categories. An online forum allows posters to share info on rebates, free items, Black Friday ads, and more. For a basic coupon search, this site will do the job.

DailyeDeals.com — DailyeDeals.com searches the web for you to find the best deals and post them daily, with a “hot deals archive” where you can find the latest bargains. Check out the first-time customer discounts offered on the page. An extensive free stuff list is also offered, and the review of free Internet access providers, free web page hosting services, and free disk space providers is a useful and unique addition. There’s also free communication info (free voice mail, email, and fax services) and “free money” guides.

DealCatcher.com — Along with deals and coupons, this site has a “compare prices” feature for different categories of products, a compilation of weekly sales circulars and Sunday newspaper ads, and a huge range of stores so you can find the one you want. Forums offer information on shopping advice, comments on vendors, and more.

dealnews.com

dealnews.com

Dealhack.comDealhack includes weekly top-ten lists of different products and a clearance list for rock-bottom prices. The site has a helpful user’s guide and you can easily search for specific items or browse different options. Specials, coupons, rebates, and buyer’s guides add to the resources.

Dealigg.comA community site run by shoppers, who post the best deals they find on the net, with the other community members voting on whether the deal is a great bargain. Deals are organized by category and you can trust that they’re good when you have the opinions and ratings of other users. This is fun for those who want to contribute their own ideas and opinions.

Dealio.com — Offers a great list of coupons, deals, and price comparisons. Dealio also offers a toolbar to make bargain hunting a breeze.

dealnews.com — “Where every day is Black Friday,” this site was ranked #24 in PC World’s “100 Best Products of 2006″ list. They deliver over a hundred deals every day and only offer the lowest total prices they find. There’s an entire section focusing on Macs, and a “Highest Rated Deals” listing. Users can submit deals too, and the site takes its customers seriously — they ban stores with a history of poor customer service.

DealOfDay.comSign up for daily deals to come right to your inbox. There’s a lot going on here — the homepage includes the latest blog posts, expiring coupons, hot deals, and the most popular 100 deals. The blog has a variety of posts that sometimes stray from practical advice and include thoughts or fun commentary on the shopping experience.

Deals.com — “Today’s Top Detective” feature on the site finds the best deals and coupons on the web, and the site highlights top-five stores and top-five categories of products. This is a good site for iPod shopping with a range of information and items.

Deals2Buy.com — The deals are listed chronologically here so you see what the newest posted bargains are. There’s also a $0 deals section full of free offers and a weekly merchant ads section that includes deals and sale info from a range of supermarkets.

Dealsea.com — This site has spare design and is better for those looking to search for a specific item rather than browsing through lots of options. Dealsea includes credit card and car incentive and rebate information. There’s news on hot deals and online coupons and forums, too.

DealsList.com — DealsList.com includes daily- and weekly-updated deals from different stores and vendors, so you can keep abreast on your favorite places to make sure you have full information. This site is a good resource for comparison-shopping credits cards so you can get the best financial deal.

DealsOfAmerica.comThis site stands out for its extensive travel deals section including hotels, flights, rental cars, etc. It lists popular hotels to search, airlines to review, and other travel sites as well as highlighted deals and sales from different sources.

FatWallet.com

FatWallet.com

DealsPl.usThis is a social-shopping website where users pick the best deals and share bargains, coupons, shopping tips as well as organize their shopping lists. This is the first and only shopping site added to the ShareThis feature button, which means users can send interesting or useful info from other sites straight to DealsPlus to share their find.

DealTaker.com — DealTaker has a very professional look and user-friendly design. There’s a good section featuring a selection of gift cards, as well as thousands of active coupons. Its features are similar to other sites, but the design makes it feel easier to use than some of the others.

eDealinfo.com — You can pinpoint specific searches for deals on this site — no mail-in rebate, deals under $25, long-term deals, top deals, tech or non-tech deals. You can also browse major stores and their current promotions and deals. This site is unique in that it offers special United Kingdom and Canadian sections.

FatWallet.comThis site has a nice design without overwhelming clutter, and is easy to read and navigate. Since it started, the site has grown to include over 800 merchant partners. It is ranked by Compete.com as one of the top 1,000 Internet properties worldwide. The site includes price comparisons (powered by PriceGrabber.com) and info on cash-back opportunities at different stores, and a well organized forum section with deal discussions and finance-focused information like “how to get a screaming car deal during the auto meltdown.” FatWallet offers a browser button for easy access to cash-back and coupon deals.

GotApex.comThis site focuses on PC products, billing itself as a one-stop shop for all computing needs. It also has hardware and software reviews along with info on hot deals. A forum includes posts that are not always relevant to shopping or technology, but can be a fun distraction.

GottaDeal.comThe community-forum-style site emphasizes sharing info on deals. This site is famous for its annual Black Friday coverage. The online coupon listing is excellent because it’s easy to read, well organized, and includes all the relevant info and links in a very usable format. There’s also a comprehensive deal archive collecting bargains from the whole week that is easy to read and navigate.

Hot-Deals.org/HotDealsClub.comThe total lack of design on this site makes it unappealing, and it feels very amateur. If you can stand the format, you can view a number of hot daily deals compiled from other deal sites, with lots of tech and computer products on offer.

Passwird.com — Run by a savvy college student, this site offers basic features without frills — a list of good deals is posted daily and then archived by week. For simple deal information on a regular basis with no extra distractions, this site works.

MrCheapStuff.com — MrCheapStuff.com features articles on things like money-saving tax tips, and tips on other buyer’s advice and deals. It also offers coupons by store and top coupon deals. The informational, interesting articles are central to the site, and you can go from there to search for coupons and deals. There’s good advice and info on buying cheap gas, time saving, and even productivity.

ResellerRatings.com — The key feature here is the store rating aspect — a wide variety of stores are rated and given reviews so you can see what’s best and worst for shopping. A list of merchant members actively participate with the site, and daily discussions offer opinion on stores, deals, and general shopping.

Savings.com

Savings.com

Savings.com — Along with site coupon hunters, members of this site find the best coupons on the web and the Savings.com community rates the best one. This site features coupons that receive the best reviews, not accepting incentives from any vendors to promote their particular coupons. Site members also get insider tips on deals.

Spoofee.comThis site emphasizes on community with discussion boards and sharing of info. There’s even a section that’s completely off-topic with jokes and other funs stuff. Top deals are featured daily, but if you want to cut through and get down to business, skip this one.

Slickdeals.net — Again, this has a community focus, and does not accept paid placement for frontpage deal listings. On this site, consumers collaborate and share info to make the best shopping decisions, using communication forums and different shopping tools. The site is free to take part.

Techbargains.com — Techbargains.com uses human research and reader feedback as opposed to automated computer searches in order to find info on the best deals for technology products. Because it focuses on one area, the site offers a strong, focused quality. Exclusive deals are often offered by vendors to site users.

xpBargains.com — The huge list of bargains featured here is overwhelming but probably full of good stuff if you have the patience to read through. The site focuses on the best tech deals, but also includes jewelry, gifts, health and beauty items, and financial services.

Image credit: TerryJ / iStockphoto

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