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Deals That Are Nifty by Sister Thrifty: Fun freebies!

Deals That Are Nifty by Sister Thrifty

Great Steals and Deals around town and online to save you the big bucks and help you keep more of your hard-earned money!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Fun freebies!

I love free stuff! I actually dream about getting free stuff and wake up with a big smile on my face. One thing I hope to share with you each week is where to find lots of great things for free. For starters, here are a few fun web sites where you can find all kinds of useful things at no cost:









www.freecycle.org (a forum organized by locality where people share)
http://www.freestuffandsamples.com/
http://www.heyitsfree.com/
http://www.ilovefreethings.com/
http://www.freeflys.com/
http://www.craigslist.com/
http://www.iloveschools.com/ (get freebies to donate to your kids’ school!)

Free stuff is great, but how do you differentiate between a free sample from a legitimate company that's trying to solicit new customers from a data harvester that will lead to lots of spam and never send you any freebie? Here are a few questions to ask about a site before you give them any of your information.

1) Who runs the site?
If there is no contact information or just a free email address, be suspicious - most places WANT customers to be able to contact them & order things, and real businesses don't conduct transactions via hotmail or other free email servers.

2) Does the site look shoddy?
Even small companies want to maintain a professional appearance. If a site has spelling mistakes or just an overall amateur appearance, be skeptical - it may have been thrown together that same week using a template & free stock images. Spam sites appear out of nowhere, collect as much data as possible in a short time, and then vanish before the authorities catch them. If a site is full of Google or popup ads, another warning bell should be ringing. If you were promoting something, would you have advertisements for a competitor on your site?

3) Why are they giving away things for free?
A retailer or wholesaler may give something free as an incentive to get customers to buy more. A manufacturer may give something away for free to promote brand awareness & attract new markets. If a site isn't selling any products, it doesn't produce any products & it isn't an advertiser for a company that makes those products, how would it earn money by spending thousands on merchandise & shipping? Why would you buy 50,000 coffee cups then mail them to people all over the world that you were never going to hear from again?

Here are a couple of sites where companies can be checked out for validity:

http://www.whois.net/
http://www.uwhois.com/

Have fun getting all your freebies this week!

CENTSerely,

Sister Thrifty

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