Newest Review: ... chose is not the cheapest you can swap at any stage and continue the shop in the cheaper establishment. Of course, there is more to this t... more
Cashback and Bargains Galore!
Member Name: CrazyEgg
Date: 03/02/13, updated on 24/08/13 (148 review reads)
Advantages: genuine savings
Disadvantages: you might become a price bore
This is a price comparison site that has been around for a number of years. Could be that you used to use it and now don't bother. Could be that you've never heard of it. If you are interested in saving money on your grocery, health and beauty or wine shopping it is a site well worth visiting or renewing your acquaintance with. The site has evolved over the years and offers an excellent service.
This review will concentrate on the grocery side, since that is the part of the site that I use regularly.
The site compares the prices of products at five major supermarket chains: Waitrose, Tesco, Sainsbury's, Asda and Ocado. (If looking at health and beauty products the selection would also include Superdrug and Boots; for wine, Majestic Wines are included). You select which supermarket you wish to shop from and then proceed as if doing a normal online food shop. At the end of your shop (if you are wanting a delivery) the site transfers your 'basket' to the website of your chosen store and you check out as usual from them, securing the gaining of any Nectar, Clubcard etc points if you collect these.
The difference is that on screen you get a running total of the cost of your shop at each of the supermarkets. If the shop you initially chose is not the cheapest you can swap at any stage and continue the shop in the cheaper establishment.
Of course, there is more to this than the above implies. You would need to view your basket first to check that the cheaper supermarket was actually offering the same products as those you had selected. They may in fact be unable to supply some items at all, or be offering a cheaper alternative. For example, I was amazed the other week to find that Asda was selling E45 baby bath lotion for £2.45, having just put it into my Waitrose trolley for £4.45. When I checked I found they were actually supplying a different brand, not E45. Waitrose remained the cheapest supermarket overall for me to complete my shop.
If you subscribe to various 'mini-stores' you can obtain cashback on your purchases. The cash is transferred to your PayPal account. I believe you have to set one up if you want the cashback, it is not given by any other means. It can take a few weeks for the money to show up in your account, but I have found it to be a reliable system. You get an email from mysupermarket to let you know the money has been sent.
The amount of cashback on offer is clearly marked on the products as they appear on screen. Most often it is 5%, currently a New Year special means it is running at 10%. The odd item may have a cash amount, 50p or £1 on offer and sometimes products have...100% cashback. That's just a rare treat! It is used to promote new products. I have enjoyed the new Kelloggs Rice Crispie Honeycomb Squares for free, for example.
Other wacky deals include Lillets sanitary towels reduced to £1 a pack in Waitrose, with mysupermarket offering £1 cashback.
How I enjoy the "Kerching!" sound the site makes when you add a cashback item to your basket!
The cashback deals are limited to so many of a particular item, and a message pops up to tell you that you "will not receive cashback earnings" if you exceed the quota: a reassuring and helpful feature.
This section of the site displays products that are currently on sale at least 30% below their average price in the year. This is great on long lasting items as it allows you to purchase more of a particular product when the price is low. If one of your favourites hits a low price, you can stock up!
This part of the site really brings home how much prices fluctuate. For example one current savvy buy is Flash with Febreze Freshness New Zealand Springs. I've never bought it. I can tell you that it is currently available for £1.50, 42% lower than its higher price of £3. The price over the last year is shown in graph form, strangely fascinating and addictive to look at I find... Indeed a key danger of the site is that you will develop into a Price Bore. Don't get me started on the price of baby wipes...
Dangers to avoid:
Multibuy offers including a range of products. You will always only get the cheapest free. For example, apricots and couscous were both in a multibuy deal. Three packs of apricots purchased at £3.79 each would have led to a saving of £3.79. Three bags of apricots and a bag of couscous added later in the shop- a saving of 99p only.
Discount shops such as Poundstretcher, Savers and the various pound and 99p shops may still offer better deals. And of course other supermarkets such as Aldi and Morrisons.
You can use the site to do an online shop, but there is also the facilty to print your list and do the shop yourself. Sometimes the site will offer to split the list for you, so that you can buy the products where they are cheapest and save even more money. I've never done that: time and convenience play a part in my choices too.
Overall this is a great tool for consumers. I dare say information is being gathered about my shopping habits through it, and there are various adverts that pop up and are probably influencing me subconsciously, but used strategically, you can make genuine savings with this site.
Summary: Great consumer tool