At Gear Patrol, finding deals is part of what we do every day. Seriously, we are always on the hunt for deals on the products we regard the highest to pass along those potential savings onto you. One thing about having our eyes constantly to the computer obsessing over the latest and greatest in the world of products is that we often find a deal that can't be ignored. When this happens, we do our best to share this throughout the Gear Patrol website, include it in our Daily Deals newsletter and even pass it along on Instagram as our Deal of the Day.
While being "extremely online" does mean that we naturally come across deals, being a good deal hunter isn't merely a product of screen time. It is a science that many of us study with zeal. Price alerts, product lifecycles, seasonality, being aware of offers and promos — these are just a few of the tricks of the trade we use to help you find the best product at the best price.
We are all meticulous and each of us has our own ways of finding these deals, but the thing is, they're out there for everyone to find. You, too, can find deals just like a Gear Patrol editor. We're here to tell you how.
Many brands and online retailers will offer first-time purchase deals or email signup offers if you subscribe to a newsletter or are buying for the first time. For example, The Sill offers 15 percent off your first purchase after you sign up for its newsletter. This isn't a tactic you want to go crazy with, but if you're looking for something special and are shopping around, getting 15 percent off can make a big difference.
One of the main ways we find deals each morning is through price alerts. If you’re looking for a specific product, say a Dyson V8, you can head to Google Shopping, search the product you’re looking for and toggle price alerts on in the Price Tracker module (this usually appears under the options to buy). Once alerts are on, you’ll get notified when the price on that Dyson price drops.
The main price alert tool we use though is CamelCamelCamel, a service that notifies you when products on Amazon change in price. It also gives you a total price history so you'll know if this was the cheapest it's ever been or not.
Life Is a Constant Cycle
Knowing the product lifecycle is important. When a new model of a product is announced or gets released, the old model usually goes on sale. Say you're looking to get a new iPhone and you don't care about having the latest model (that's the yet-to-be-announced iPhone 13). Waiting until the fall when Apple typically releases the latest version means you should be able to find savings on many older models. Whenever you're shopping for something that is consistently updated, get to know the release calendar so you can ensure that you get the very best price.
Seasonality Is Key
Similar to understanding the product lifecycle, you'll want to understand the seasonality of the product you're looking for. For example, outdoor furniture starts to go on sale in the spring and fall, so we built a page that is dedicated to the best patio furniture deals for this time of year. Many products are best when shopped for certain occasions, like TVs close to the Super Bowl or grills just before the Fourth of July or mattresses at Presidents' Day.
These Are a Few of My Favorite Things
Keep a list of your favorite sites that consistently offer up deals. We love Huckberry for its hidden gems and J.Crew for its constant deals on high-quality clothes. The list goes on and on. You can also subscribe to a couple of newsletters that feed you deals on products you're into. We have a Deals Newsletter that goes out each day, which we think is probably a good place to start.
Know Its Worth
Sometimes when you see a deal that looks too good to be true, be wary, because it could be. Many larger third-party retailers may adjust the MSRP or List Price to make it look more expensive than the price the manufacturer sells the product for. This in turn makes it look like a bigger deal than it actually is — or in some instances, it isn't a deal at all.
For instance, Sur La Table has the Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine listed at $999.99 but is marked down to $699.95. This is a borderline insane deal. Until you realize that Breville (and nearly every other retailer) has the list price at $699.95. This doesn't happen a ton, but when you find a great deal, it is wise to check the price from the manufacturer before you pull the trigger.