Paying full price can be considered foolish or even lazy by some extreme bargain hunters, but finding the most current online savings offers can admittedly be a tedious task. Skip trying to do all the research on your own – coupon websites are designed to make shopping (and saving) easy for the average consumer. These top sites not only offer a wide range of deals and discounts, they have unique added benefits to make the experience a pleasant one. (For related reading, also see Coupon Shopping: Clip Your Way To Savings.)

IN PICTURES: Top 6 Mindless Money Wasters

1. CouponMountain

In addition to offering a wide range of shopping categories that users can browse through (baby and maternity, groceries, and shoes, for example), CouponMountain features a handy list of the top coupons right on the front page. The coupons range from percentages off your online purchase to exclusive bargains for email subscribers, and the search bar at the top lets you look specifically for just the right product or store you're interested in.

Looking for a deal on a hard-to-find or very specific product? Use CouponMountain's Facebook page to post your wish-list item. Someone from the site will try to respond within a day or two with a coupon code or sale for maximum savings!

2. Groupon

One of the first of its kind to offer special limited-time and geographically focused offers, Groupon still reigns as the top pick for getting discounts of 50% or more on all kinds of beauty service, restaurant and travel purchases. With the buying power of thousands of consumers driving the prices down on these "hot offers", the site pushes shoppers to claim the deal before they disappear. Groupon buys are often impulsive in nature, but they make for great "experience" gifts for those whose budget has historically forced them to go without.

No printer? No problem! Smartphone users can snag a deal anywhere by utilizing the Groupon app for iPhone and Android phones. Purchase with the touch of a button, and cash in your discount by flashing your phone screen to the establishment at the time of redemption.

IN PICTURES: 5 Money-Saving Shopping Tips

3. DealNews

With a focus on some of the most aggressive electronics deals available, DealNews has been a popular stop for techies with an eye for saving money. Whether you're in the market for a discounted netbook, DSLR camera or boxed DVD set of your favorite sitcom, usually at least one online retailer has a hot deal to share. DealNews is also a must-see destination for Black Friday shopping enthusiasts. It showcases some of the earliest "leaked" ads, as well as those officially provided by the retailers.

Newbies to the site can find out just how worthy a deal is by checking out the "hotness factor" for any listed deal. This rating system helps separate the scorching good deals from the rest.

4. Retail Me Not

The premise behind Retail Me Not's clever name and layout is that no one should be paying full retail prices for their online purchases. If you agree, you'll enjoy perusing coupon codes for over 65,000 online stores by using the site's intuitive search engine. In addition to online codes, you'll find printable coupons to use in your local brick-and-mortar shops, and site members can contribute their own discounts with the community.

Not every discount shared will work for all shoppers. Retail Me Not's feedback buttons allow you to check whether it is still valid when you shop, giving the community at large a snapshot of how many shoppers it has already worked for.

The Bottom Line

As it stands, most coupon and deal sites make money on a large number of the purchases originating from their site. By frequenting the best sites to help keep them in business, you'll likely see a continued improvement of features over time.

Find out what happened in financial news this week. Read Water Cooler Finance: G20 Leader Spats And China Fakes It.

Related Articles
  1. Active Trading Fundamentals

    How Groupon Makes Money

    Find out how Groupon makes money, including a rundown of how Groupon works and what benefits it provides to the businesses it partners with.
  2. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    Top 3 Muni California Mutual Funds

    Discover analyses of the top three California municipal bond mutual funds, and learn about their characteristics, historical performance and suitability.
  3. Stock Analysis

    The Biggest Risks of Investing in Amazon Stock

    Find out which risks are most important to Amazon's shareholders. Learn which operational risks impact share prices and which financial risks affect investors.
  4. Stock Analysis

    How Does Work and Make Money?

    Learn how is taking on retail giants Amazon, Walmart and Costco by promising to save customers an average of 10 to 15% on over 10 million items.
  5. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    Top 4 Investment Grade Corporate Bonds ETFs

    Discover detailed analysis and information about some of the top exchange-traded funds (ETFs) that offer exposure to the investment-grade corporate bond market.
  6. Stock Analysis

    Top 3 Stocks for the Coming Holiday Season

    If you want to buck the bear market trend by going long on consumer stocks, these three might be your best bets.
  7. Investing News

    This is the Fastest-Growing Consumer Complaint

    There’s no way to guarantee that your Social Security number won’t fall into the wrong hands. Here are some ways to make yourself less of a target.
  8. Entrepreneurship

    5 Ways to Make Money on Twitter

    Find out how people are making money online on Twitter, and get some ideas that can turn Twitter into a source of revenue for you or for your small business.
  9. Stock Analysis

    How Does Casper Work and Make Money?

    Learn how the startup Casper is delivering a good night's sleep directly to customers' homes for a fraction of the cost of the competition.
  10. Stock Analysis

    4 Catalysts That Could Propel Best Buy's Stock Forward

    Understand the current Best Buy model and why it has been failing lately. Learn about the top potential catalysts that could increase Best Buy's stock price.
  1. Who do hedge funds lend money to?

    Many traditional lenders and banks are failing to provide loans. In their absence, hedge funds have begun to fill the gap. ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. Are high yield bonds a good investment?

    Bonds are rated according to their risk of default by independent credit rating agencies such as Moody's, Standard & ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. What are the maximum Social Security disability benefits?

    The maximum Social Security disability benefit amount for a single eligible person in 2015 is $1,165 per month, but you can ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. What is the relationship between the current yield and risk?

    The general relationship between current yield and risk is that they increase in correlation to one another. A higher current ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. What is a 'busted' convertible bond?

    In finance, a convertible bond represents a hybrid security that offers debt and equity features and risks. While a convertible ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. How can I invest in electronic retailing (e-tailing)?

    Electronic retail is one of the fastest growing segments of the economy. Every year, more people are choosing to purchase ... Read Full Answer >>

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. Zero-Sum Game

    A situation in which one person’s gain is equivalent to another’s loss, so that the net change in wealth or benefit is zero. ...
  2. Capitalization Rate

    The rate of return on a real estate investment property based on the income that the property is expected to generate.
  3. Gross Profit

    A company's total revenue (equivalent to total sales) minus the cost of goods sold. Gross profit is the profit a company ...
  4. Revenue

    The amount of money that a company actually receives during a specific period, including discounts and deductions for returned ...
  5. Normal Profit

    An economic condition occurring when the difference between a firm’s total revenue and total cost is equal to zero.
  6. Operating Cost

    Expenses associated with the maintenance and administration of a business on a day-to-day basis.
Trading Center
You are using adblocking software

Want access to all of Investopedia? Add us to your “whitelist”
so you'll never miss a feature!