Top 5 ways the internet can save you money

We all know that the Internet is an amazing resource for finding information and connecting people, but there are plenty of online tools available to help save you money.

As part of ProBlogger’s latest Group Writing Project — this time focused on “Top 5” posts — here are the Top 5 Ways the Internet Can Save You Money.

1. Deals and Comparison Shopping
The ability to search for good and services online opens up a pricing competition to hundreds and thousands of potential sellers. When vendors compete, the consumer wins. No longer are you forced to buy products from the local big-box retailer or the only mom-and-pop shop in your town.

One of my favorite sites for deals and online coupons is DealsPlus, as I mentioned in the 10 More Ways to Immediately Start Saving Money.

2. Freebies!
If you know the right places to look, then you can find plenty of freebies online. I don’t pay for magazines anymore. And craigslist is a haven for freebies and freebie-hunters.

Not quite sure where to start looking for freebies? Check out the 6 deal and freebie feeds I swear by.

3. Online Banking and Online Savings Accounts
The Internet has revolutionized the way that banks handle their customers. Services like online bill pay can help you get organized, cut down on tedious check-writing and save you money from vendors in the process.

Likewise, the rise of online savings accounts from companies like ING have forced brick-and-mortar banks to pony up higher interest rates. (If you’re not familiar with online savings accounts, read up on why you should open one and then which ones are the best to use.)

4. Online Investing
I’m still relatively new to the whole online investing game (having just moved my IRAs into Vanguard), but the Internet has turned the idea of money management on its head. Because companies don’t need to have brick-and-mortar buildings to draw in and sustain an audience, they can offer lower fees for buying into many mutual funds.

But not all online investing is going to save you money. Now that they have the ability to make changes at the click of a button, trigger-happy investors may end up paying large sums in transaction fees. It all depends on how you manage your investing.

5. Personal Finance Bloggers
There are a ton of great personal finance bloggers publishing on the net. Some of my favorite include Get Rich Slowly, My Money Blog and Personal Finance Advice.

If you’re just getting started in your personal finance quest, you’ll find plenty of resources online to help you on your way. If you’re well in to your financial journey, you’ll also find plenty of great resources online. There’s a full range of knowledgeable and friendly PF bloggers who want to help you save and make money.

But even though the Internet is rife with opportunities to save money, there are plenty of easy ways to waste money online. It’s important to balance out the savings with the easy opportunities to spend money frivolously and without regard for necessity.…