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How to maximise points when shopping online or in-store

Written by: Pete Howroyd
Maximising points when shopping online or in-store at a time when the cost of living is soaring is a way to ensure you’re getting the most out of your hard-earned money.

Below are five tips to help you bag rewards and points on your everyday spending:

1) Using the right card

A simple and easy way to maximise your points when shopping online or in-store is to make sure you’re paying for everything you can with a credit card that incentivises earning points, which you can then spend at a later date.

This can include everyday expenses such as your weekly food shop, or coffee order, but also for monthly bills such as utilities, insurance and any other larger expenses you pay each month. Some of the best point/cashback credit cards on the market at the moment include Tesco (for clubcard points) and Amex which also offers an everyday credit card with an introductory 5% cashback offer for the first three months.

It’s important to note however, you should only charge an amount to your credit card that you know you can pay off. The key to this and for using your card responsibly is to treat them like debit cards, so don’t use them as an excuse to overspend.

2) Use browser extensions

Making use of internet browser extensions is a must, especially when it comes to shopping online. Browser extensions are plug-ins that you can download onto your web browser, such as Chrome or Safari.

Some great money saving extensions include Honey, Rakuten, Giving Assistant and InvisibleHand.

They’re an excellent way to save money and remind you of offers you may have otherwise forgotten. They work by alerting you if the product you’re viewing or interested in will earn you rewards or points.

If you install multiple extensions, you could end up receiving more than one useful pop-up whenever an item qualifies, giving you the chance to scout out the best deal.

3) Look for seasonal promotions

There will always be promotions across the entire calendar year, but we all know that the discounts and point earning opportunities rapidly increase around certain seasons, such as Father’s Day, Black Friday, Christmas etc. This is to incentivise you to spend specific amounts with them. For example, this could be “spend over £100 to earn over 300 points”.

Make sure you shop around for these promotions, especially if you’re going to be purchasing an item regardless.

4) In-store purchases

If something grabs your attention online, be sure to check for any active promotions or via your favourite shopping extension. Then make your purchase and select in-store pickup. Many brands offer in-store only offers to encourage more footfall within their branches, so it’s a great way to pick up extra points too.

5) Loyalty schemes

Loyalty schemes can be a good way to maximise earning points in store, such as supermarkets, as well as online shopping, as long as you know you’re getting the best price as well as the rewards.

It can often seem overwhelming to pick just one, as there are so many different variations out there, but loyalty cards and schemes often work in very similar ways. Through shopping you can earn points each time you spend money with a particular retailer or group. These points can then be used against future purchases at the retailer or its partner brands.

If you want to combine all your loyalty cards in one place, loyalty app Swapi lets you link all your loyalty cards in its digital wallet. You can then use it for any in-store or online purchases.

By Pete Howroyd is founder & CEO of Swapi

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