A shopping expert has revealed nine tips to help you find discount codes for almost everything you buy online. 

We all know someone (or is that someone) who likes to indulge in a little online shopping now and again.

Getting our ordered items delivered straight to our doors often by the very next day has become the quickest and most convenient way to shop around our busy lives.

However, as we tap our items into our basket and head to the online checkout, many of us don't stop and take the time to look for discount codes that could save us money.

Border Telegraph: Here's nine tips to help you find a valid discount code. ( Getty Images)Here's nine tips to help you find a valid discount code. ( Getty Images) (Image: Getty Images)

How do I find a valid discount code?

Finding a valid discount code can be a daunting task since it's often tricky to find a code that is still valid - especially for certain stores.

To help us out, Aktug Dogan, an online shopping expert at Refermate, has shared some valuable tips and tricks on how to save money on our online purchases via discount codes and how to find codes that actually work.

1. Check Out Coupon Websites 

The online shopper starts by suggesting a reliable coupon website and searching for codes there.

Aktug said: “Coupon websites are not all perfect. You’ll find different discount codes listed on different websites. 

"You’ll also come across expired coupon codes or codes that are not valid for specific items. 

"It’s important that you bookmark reliable coupon websites for convenient access for the future."

2. Install Browser Extensions

The pro also recommends installing a browser extension that automatically searches for available discounts in order to save you time.

"Extensions are plug-ins that you can install on web browsers like Edge or Chrome, which help you to find promo codes when shopping online," Aktug explained.

The expert added: “Browser extensions are a good option for saving time. You can visit the store in your browser and search for ‘coupons’ and select an extension that is popular and credible. 

"When you’re shopping on a website, these extensions will pop up a window and try to find a coupon code that works."

3. Download Apps of Your Favourite Stores

"Another good option is to download the apps for each of your favourite stores and sign up for any rewards programs, as this might give you access to more in-store and online deals" according to Aktug.

The shopping expert elaborated that the apps often feature exclusive discounts and coupons that are unavailable elsewhere.

The Referemate expert went on to say that these kinds of rewards programs give you opportunities to benefit from in-store deals but also allow you to accumulate points. 

These points can be combined with coupons to maximise your savings even further, according to the expert.

Border Telegraph: Downloading brand apps and talking to customer service are some tips to help you access discount codes. ( Getty Images)Downloading brand apps and talking to customer service are some tips to help you access discount codes. ( Getty Images) (Image: Getty Images)

4. Talk to Customer Service 

Aktug pointed out that many people who negotiate purchases in person forget that you can also negotiate the price online.

For instance, the expert suggests that you can initiate a conversation via the chat box on the retailer’s website and ask for a discount.

The savvy shopper added: "You can receive a discount sometimes by simply asking a customer service agent about any discount codes available. 

“When you’re talking with a customer service agent online, inform them that you’re checking different websites and looking for the best deal. 

"Nowadays retailers provide discount codes to prevent customer loss and motivate them to complete their purchases on their website."

5. Abandon Your Shopping Cart

Aktug shared that online retailers closely monitor your activities on their websites.

Their "worst fear", the expert reveals is the loss of a potential customer, especially if they filled their shopping cart.

To make the most of this, Aktug explained: "In order for this method to be effective, you should log into your account so that the retailer knows who abandoned the cart. You should then add the items to the cart and leave the website. 

"After a couple of days, check whether the store sent you an email requesting you to complete the purchase. If the email contains a coupon code, consider your attempt successful". 

6. Sign Up for the Store Newsletter 

Another top tip is subscribing to the newsletters of various stores so you can pick up a discount code on a regular basis.

"Retailers try to motivate customers to join their newsletters by providing discount codes," Aktug advised.

The shopping expert added: "These codes are personalised and will give you a discount only on a single purchase". 

The expert also provided a handy tip to avoid overwhelming your primary email account.

Aktug recommended setting up a secondary email account for receiving newsletter emails.

Border Telegraph: Use social media and check out coupon websites to access discount codes. ( Getty Images)Use social media and check out coupon websites to access discount codes. ( Getty Images) (Image: Getty Images)

7. Use Social Media

"You can follow your favourite brands and retailers on social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to stay updated on their latest promotions and exclusive discount codes" the expert recommended.

Special discount codes or limited-time offers to followers are often shared on posts, stories, or tweets by brands.

Aktug continued: “Engage with the brand’s social media content by liking, commenting, and sharing, as companies may reward active followers with exclusive discount codes or giveaways.

"Explore social media groups, communities such as on Reddit, or hashtags dedicated to sharing discount codes, where users often post and exchange valuable codes they have discovered."

8. Try Coupon Phrases

The shopping expert also recommended using common coupon phrases to help you discover hidden or exclusive discount codes. 

Aktug went on to say that many online retailers are aware of these common coupon phrases and use them to promote their discounts. 

"You can increase the likelihood of finding active and valid discount codes by including such common phrases," according to the expert.

The pro shared this example, explaining that the coupon phrase ‘OFF’ is the most used coupon code in the UK, with common variations, such as 10OFF, 15OFF, 20OFF, and so on.

Aktug continued: "You can google search websites that curate the most common coupon phrases, and some of them do this for each retailer".

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9. Be Understanding and Patient

Finally, Aktug noted that sometimes you have to be understanding and realize that discount codes have various limitations, including expiration dates, brand-specific restrictions, and single-use restrictions.

The shopping expert explained that it is also possible that your purchase did not meet the code’s requirements, such as reaching a minimum spending amount. 

The pro concluded: “Remember that each retailer has their unique coupon strategies, which can vary on a monthly or quarterly basis. 

"That’s why it’s important to be patient and try different techniques. You should take advantage of the discounts available, as shopping online is competitive."