Monday, November 28, 2011

Five tips for stress-free holiday shopping

Today, on Cyber Monday—the biggest online shopping day of the year—digi-savvy shoppers will take to the web to get ahead on their holiday shopping. You’ve managed to avoid the Black Friday crowds, but are your online shopping skills up to snuff? Just in the nick of time, here are five tips on how to use Google tools to save time and money this holiday shopping season.

Tip #1. Avoid the lines and parking nightmares—shop from your couch with Google Catalogs
Today we’re announcing a version of Google Catalogs for Android tablets, available for free in Android Market. Now shoppers can browse Google Catalogs on both iOS and Android tablets. With over 125 of your favorite brands and 400 issues across a myriad of categories, Google Catalogs puts all your favorite print catalogs right at your fingertips. You’ll find pages of gift and decorating ideas and get a head start on your holiday shopping list.

Browse Pottery Barn’s Christmas 2011 catalog on Google Catalogs - now available for Android tablets.

Tip #2. Let Google Product Search do your research for you
With so many brands, models and features to choose from, sometimes finding the perfect gift—especially when it comes to electronics and gadgets—can be overwhelming. Google Product Search gives you detailed product information, reviews and price comparisons for all the gifts on your list.

We recently launched a new comparison feature for electronics that lets you quickly see how a particular product stacks up against other similar models and brands. For example, on the Nikon D3100 product page, you can now see—at a glance—feature comparisons between the D3100 and other Nikon models as well as cameras from other brands. Read more about other recent Product Search updates on the Google Commerce blog.

A quick comparison shows the differences in resolution and other camera features.

Tip #3. Bring Google Shopper along as your mobile shopping assistant
Have you ever found yourself standing in a store, trying to decide between, say, two blenders, and wishing you could consult an expert? Google Shopper can help. Wherever you are, this free mobile app for Android and iPhone lets you scan a barcode or search by voice or text to get detailed product information, read reviews and compare prices online and at local stores. You can also use Google Shopper to see if a product is in stock nearby.

Research, share and find products near you with Google Shopper.

Tip #4. Take advantage of holiday savings with Google Offers
Before you hit main street for a shopping extravaganza, check out Google Offers for great deals on local places to eat, shop and play. Google Offers has teamed up with a number of great retailers this holiday season, making it easy to save while you shop. You can also find and buy great deals from Google Offers with the free Android app.

Tip #5. Simplify your online and offline shopping experience with Google Wallet
Save time and money by shopping with Google Wallet — a smart, virtual wallet that stores your payment cards, offers and more on your phone and online. When you shop with merchants that accept Google Wallet online just use your Google Wallet username and password to complete your purchase—there’s no need to pull out your credit card or enter your shipping address with every transaction. If you’re at the register at stores like American Eagle, Macy’s, Gap, Inc or any of our other merchant partners, take a minute to try the Google Wallet app, available on Nexus S 4G for Sprint, to tap, pay and save.

I hope these tips and Google tools help to make your shopping experience a little easier (and fun!) this Cyber Monday, and throughout the holiday season.



(Cross-posted on the Commerce blog)