Money. You work hard for it. You save. You look at how you can amass more of it. It hasn’t been since the sell an item on Ebay how-to of  “Modern Day Alchemy” that Techlife delivered an article about money. (Editor’s note: “Modern Day Alchemy” was the most recent published syndicated Techlife column.) (Author’s note: The proceeding editor’s note is completely fabricated for artistic license, but it did look highly impressive.) So prior to the how-to on using Ebay, the last time I spoke of money was back in 2009 with “Freecycle – Give, Get, Save“.

One thing readers often comment about is their confusion after reading a column. Upon hearing this remark, like any good columnist I make plans how the next time I will just dial it back. Make it easier to understand. But then you get deep into a subject about online cartography, such as “Why North is No Longer Up” and realize, maybe there are readers who don’t know what cartography means or what how it would relate to immersive photographic cartography. And right there a reader says, “I’m lost, I didn’t realize I picked up the New England Journal of Medicine.” Clearly they are lost because cartography is the study and making of maps and likely would be a minor side bar in the New England Journal of Medicine. I wonder though; “Hey you, yes you, the reader. Your epidermis is showing.”

In an effort to bring a bit of fiscal responsibility to Techlife–  Wait sorry, in easier terms, in an effort to showcase how to save you some money I have a simple piece of advice for your online shopping. Don’t checkout. Of course I don’t mean, never. That would make it hard to get anything purchased. Instead it might be better to say, slow down when checking out. When you purchase anything these days, many people as suggested by an early Techlife column, are conditioned to read reviews. Learning from other users the positives, negatives and little tricks of products and services helps improve decisions and buying habits. This is being a smart consumer.

I specifically said “save you some money.” You are nodding your head, saying to yourself, “I stuck with him this long, let’s see where he is going.” There are many sites that exist to offer online shopper’s coupon codes, Retail Me Not is easy to use and user driven. The site has coupon codes for more than 150,000 sites. The strength of the site is the data around each coupon code. Users can rate the codes providing a success rate of each code. A recent search for coupon codes found the average discount was $40. There were 20 codes listed as “active” which means more than 50% success rate and recent usage. There were another 32 codes listed as unreliable, which is based on success rates less than 50% and age of the code.  What this means is with more than 50 coupon codes for just a single site, albeit a popular one, Retail Me Not is a site to visit EVERY time you are starting to make an online purchase on any web site. Be sure to share how much you have saved? To date I have saved over $500 using this site. Savings like that is habit forming.