Consumer IQ

The 7 Best Apps for Shopping On a Budget

shopping

Online shopping has really changed the way we buy. If we want a new outfit, new book, or pretty much anything else, we no longer have to go to a physical location to pick it up.

As technology has evolved, so have the opportunities for shopping on a budget. Today, there are plenty of apps that will help you find the best price on clothing or whatever else you’re looking for, as well as apps for shopping that are designed to help you save money on clothes and other items.

Whether you’re looking for terrific deals on designer clothing, local dining deals or just want to be sure you’re getting the best price on an item, apps for shopping are there to help you out.

Gilt on the Go

Gilt is a member-based deal site that features daily sales on designer clothing, home goods, and artisanal foods. The site was originally by invitation only but has sinced opened up. You have to be a member to shop through Gilt, but you no longer need an invite.

Gilt on the Go is the site’s app. There are versions available of iPhone, Android, Blackberry and iPad. The app helps you save money on clothes by sending you instant sale alerts, right to your phone.

You can also preview future sales, so you can plan ahead. The app version of Gilt is quicker than the online version, so you have a better chance of snagging a deal before it sells out.

Rue La La

Rue La La is similar to Gilt in a few ways. It’s designed for style-conscious people who are shopping on a budget. You need to be a member to take advantage of the deals offered by the site. Each deal is only available for 48 hours, then it’s gone for good.

The Rue La La app is available for Android phones and iPhone. Some reviews of the app have noted that it’s not very fast, so if you’re shopping for an in-demand item, you might miss out if you’re using the app version and not the site.

The app also lets you preview upcoming sales and set reminders to yourself so that you don’t miss out.

Groupon

Groupon might have fallen on some tough times, but the app and website continues to offer people daily deals at local stores, restaurants and gyms. With the app installed on your iPhone or Android phone, you’ll receive a daily deal update, which is customized based on your preferences.

You’re able to buy the deals right from your phone and when its time to redeem your Groupons, you don’t have to worry about printing. You can bring up the deal right on your phone and show it to the cashier or waiter.

Price Check by Amazon

When you’re shopping on a budget, you want to be absolutely sure you’re getting the best price on an item.

Instead of searching stores or websites on your own to find the best price, the Price Check app from Amazon lets you search for an item or take a picture of its bar code, then instantly returns results from online and brick and mortar stores.

With this app, you’ll never have to wonder if you could have gotten an item for cheaper somewhere else. Price Check is available for both iPhone and Android phones.

Red Laser

Red Laser is similar to Price Check. You scan a bar code with the app on your Android phone or iPhone, then it brings up stores that sell the item and the prices.

Not only can you compare prices with the app, you can also find the nearest store that is selling the item. Plus, Red Laser allows you to scan in your loyalty cards for each store and keep them on your phone, instead of cluttering up your wallet or key chain.

Google Offers

Google Offers is similar to Groupon – you get personalized, local deals delivered to your email address or phone. The app is integrated with Google Maps. That means you’ll be able to search the map to find the deals that are closest to you.

If you don’t use the deals right away, the app will remind you to cash them in the next time you walk into the store or restaurant.

Poshmark

One way to save money on clothes is to buy fashionable, but gently used garments. Poshmark lets you do just that. The app is designed to help people sell stylish clothing that they no longer wear. It’s like having access to the closets of fashionable women across the country, all tucked away in your pocket.

You can also sell your clothes with Poshmark. You take pictures of your clothing, describe the items, and price them. If someone buys your clothing, the app helps you take care of shipping and sending it to them. Right now, the app only lets you list women’s clothing and accessories.

What apps do you use to save money when shopping?

Kelly Anderson is a financial planner who blogs about financial advice you can use in your everyday life. Connect with her on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.