April 27, 2011

Already Saving for Christmas

My daughters' birthdays are in September. For me, that's too close to Christmas to not save/shop year 'round. This has proven much more difficult now that they're developing their own tastes. When they were younger I could buy whatever I wanted and know they would be happy. Now they're requesting things, and their idea of what's "cool" changes on a regular basis. The coveted item at the top of their list today could be at the bottom by Christmas.
Fortunately, I've found a relatively easy way to save, so I can wait to shop: Swag Bucks. If you aren't already doing this, you should check it out. Basically, the site lets you earn "digital dollars" to trade in for whatever you want. In my case, I trade them in for $5 Amazon.com gift cards. You can redeem your Swag Bucks (SBs) for up to 5 of the same items a month. You earn SBs by searching the web, taking surveys, completing tasks and special offers, and a multitude of other ways. I've been doing this for two months and have so far redeemed my SBs for $45 worth of Amazon.com gift cards. The gift cards never expire, so you can just transfer them to your existing Amazon account and use them when you're ready.
This isn't an all or nothing type of deal. Your SBs don't expire, so you can use the site as often or as little as you like. Here are some things I've learned:
  • Install the Swag Bucks tool bar. You'll receive 1 SB every day just for having the tool bar. Plus, it makes searching that much easier.
  • Do the "Daily Poll." Every day Swag Bucks has a Daily Poll on its site. You earn 1 SB every day that you do the poll.
  • Complete the "NOSO" option every day. This stands for "No Obligation Special Offers." You'll be shown a series of offers to either sign up for or skip. I skip every offer (you don't enter any personal information when you skip the offers) and earn 2 SBs every day.
  • Visit the "Trusted Surveys" section each day. You'll receive 1 SB each day you visit. 
(By doing all of the above, you'll guarantee yourself 5 SBs a day. It's not the hundreds a day some "Swaggers" are pulling in, but it's a start)
  • Spread out your searches. I typically earn SBs two to three times a day through Internet searches (I've won as little as 7 SBs and as much as 37 SBs... you can win up to 100 SBs at a time). I search once in the morning, mid-afternoon and early/late evening.
  • Check for "Swagcodes" between 1 pm EST and 4 pm ESAT. Swagcodes are strange looking words (for example: Th3sISaCoDe) hidden in the Swag Bucks blog, on the Swag Bucks Facebook page or on the Swag Bucks Twitter page. You'll earn a specified amount of SBs for finding the code. I personally don't stress out about the codes. The times I've posted above aren't always the times the codes are released, but generally I seem to have luck most days if I look for a code during that time. (There's a "swidget" you can download, so you just click it to find out if there's an active code). 
I will caution there are various "special offers" you can complete that will cost you money. That's not my thing. I'm doing it to save money, not to spend money. However, if you buy deals through Groupon, sometimes you can buy those through the Swag Bucks site, so you get your deal plus earn SBs. 
It sounds like a lot of work. It's not. You'll find on the Facebook page there are some people with nothing better to do than "swag" all day. I take some time to do it while my daughters are in school (there are some "tasks" that take literally 10 minutes and earn you 12-36 SBs), but that's about it. I'm not going to spend all day on the computer, but if that's what you want to do, go for it.
If you're interested in checking it out, please click here. Yes, this is my referral page, so if you look around the site and want to sign up, please come back to the link so I'll get some referral bucks. Or not. Really it's up to you. Either way, I'm still feeling good about the effort I've made to save up for birthdays and Christmas.
(Disclosure: Swag Bucks did not ask me to write this post, nor am I receiving any compensation for it. I just thought you would like to know about the site)
PS- Time is running out to enter my In Stitches giveaway.


MaryAnne said...

I use swagbucks, too, and I always redeem for those $5 Amazon gift cards. It's not a lot of money, but it helps!

Quadmama said...

It can add up fast, so I'm happy.

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