As the world changes, so does the way the world shops. In 2010, a number of tech-related buying trends were introduced. As we look ahead to a new year, we should see the following buying movements pick up more steam. (For related reading, also take a look at Coupon Shopping: Clip Your Way To Savings.)

IN PICTURES: Top 6 Mindless Money Wasters

Mobile Coupons and Online Discount Codes
While some rural areas struggle just to get the hang of internet-generated coupons, the more savvy shopping meccas are already on to bigger and better things. Coupons that arrive in your mobile inbox are hot right now, giving shoppers a less cluttered way to ask for a discount. Sites like Coupon Sherpa not only share big discounts for travel, jewelry, books and more - they also have their own iPhone app. Just flash your iPhone display to the cashier to redeem dozens of member-only perks or one of hundreds of savings offers that are available to the public.

If you're shopping online, keep an eye out for discount codes that can be entered for instant savings, free shipping or add-on gifts. Sites like CouponMountain collect these codes for you, and can save you a lot of money.

Did you know that you can text to save? Many companies reward customers with coupons and even gift cards when they text to a special number. Text messaging charges may apply, however, so be familiar with the details of each promotion (and your data plan) before you participate.

Group Buying
The influence of crowds is one of the hottest new developments in deal-finding, with Groupon leading the way in this daily offer category. By focusing on just one spectacular savings special per city each day, buyers can net a total savings of 50% or more on a variety of services, gifts, or merchandise. In 2010, a number of sites followed Groupon's lead, creating dozens of destinations for the high-pressure, one-day-only events. Since the playing field is only expected to get more competitive, aggregates like 8coupons.com have become invaluable in narrowing down the possibilities to only what you can afford.

Do you feel like you're stuck with a group buying deal that you no longer want or can't use? Both CoupReCoup and DealsGoRound let users get cash for their unwanted daily deal certificates. They are also great places to check if you missed out on a fabulous past deal!

IN PICTURES: 9 Ways To Trim The Fat From Your Spending

Subscription Incentives
Just as we struggle to keep our inboxes clear of clutter, there are now shopping sites that require subscriptions to have access to the best deals. For those consumers who are determined to never miss a deal, the email subscriptions can add up to big savings.

Super shoppers are encouraged to set up a separate email account for newsletters and deal alerts - especially if they are checking deals from work - to keep their emails from loved ones from being lost in a sea of "Christmas in July" sale offers.

Bar Code Scanning Software
Price comparison sites are popular, but they can be difficult to access on the go. Since most buyers find themselves curious about a good deal while standing in the store aisle, the development of smart phone apps such as ShopSavvy give you up-to-date pricing in an instant. Just use the camera feature on your phone to scan the UPC code on most any product. Prices for the same product at stores near you or online will be displayed, giving you the chance to see if you are really getting a good deal.

The scanning and saving doesn't have to end when you get home. Applications like CoupSmart award prizes and freebies to users who use the same type of bar code scanning technology with their online platform.

The Bottom Line
There are already many predictions about the buying habits of shoppers in 2011. Without a doubt, many shopping trends will involve technology, but as always, the most popular ways to save will be the offers that provide the best bang for your bucks. (For additional reading, also see 4 Coupon Sites Worth Checking Out.)

Related Articles
  1. Budgeting

    Bark Box Review: Is It Worth It?

    Find out if BarkBox, the leading e-commerce subscription service for monthly doggie surprise boxes of treats and toys, is worth all the hype.
  2. Budgeting

    Blue Apron Review: Is It Worth It?

    Read about one of the top meal-kit delivery services in the United States, and learn more about what it offers and how much it costs.
  3. Investing News

    3 Amazon Business Segments to Watch in 2016

    We'll look at three divisions of Amazon that are likely to perform well in 2016.
  4. Stock Analysis

    JCPenney's Path To Profitability (JCP)

    Learn about what J.C. Penney's management team has been doing to profitably grow its business as the company recovers from years of revenue declines.
  5. Stock Analysis

    3 Chip Makers Betting on the Drone Industry in 2016 (INTC, QCOM)

    Find out which of the big chip makers are betting heavily on a burgeoning consumer drone market that could be the next big wave in consumer electronics.
  6. Home & Auto

    The Latest Airbag Recalls: What to Do

    The latest warnings are from Honda/Acura and Dodge. How to look up your car – and what to do if you find it on the recall list.
  7. Economics

    What is a Complement?

    A good or service that’s used in conjunction with another good or service is a complement.
  8. Investing News

    Super Savings for Your Super Bowl Party? Bet on It

    Prices for wings, avocados and TVs are all coming down, which will make your Super Bowl 50 festivities less costly.
  9. Budgeting

    Bespoke Post Review: Is It Worth It?

    Find out if Bespoke Post, the fast-growing, e-commerce subscription service for men's lifestyle and grooming products, is worth all of the hype in this review.
  10. Stock Analysis

    The Biggest Risks of Investing in Costco Stock (COST)

    Read about some of the biggest risks of investing in Costco stock. Gain a better understanding of its business model before buying in.
RELATED FAQS
  1. How does a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) affect my salary?

    Some companies build salary adjustments into their compensation structures to offset the effects of inflation on their employees. ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. Does QVC accept debit cards?

    QVC accepts debit card payments as one of its many payment options. The company, which is the world’s leading video and e-commerce ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. Where can you buy NetSpend reload packs?

    You can only purchase NetSpend reload packs at Giant Eagle, Albertsons, Roundy's and Pathmark supermarkets. NetSpend cards ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. Does QVC charge sales tax?

    QVC, an American TV network, is registered with states to collect sales or use tax on taxable items. QVC is also required ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. Can you pay off a Walmart credit card in store? (WMT)

    Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT) allows multiple payment options for its credit cards, including in-store payments. The ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. Does Walmart take international credit cards?

    Foreign visitors to Walmart locations in the United States can use their credit cards issued by banks outside of the U.S. ... Read Full Answer >>
Hot Definitions
  1. Black Swan

    An event or occurrence that deviates beyond what is normally expected of a situation and that would be extremely difficult ...
  2. Inverted Yield Curve

    An interest rate environment in which long-term debt instruments have a lower yield than short-term debt instruments of the ...
  3. Socially Responsible Investment - SRI

    An investment that is considered socially responsible because of the nature of the business the company conducts. Common ...
  4. Presidential Election Cycle (Theory)

    A theory developed by Yale Hirsch that states that U.S. stock markets are weakest in the year following the election of a ...
  5. Super Bowl Indicator

    An indicator based on the belief that a Super Bowl win for a team from the old AFL (AFC division) foretells a decline in ...
Trading Center