Roughly one-third of all holiday shopping is now done online – and that raises a whole new set of questions: What’s the best way to check that all your gifts will arrive on time? What if the price drops – can you get a refund? And if it needs to be returned, where – in your month’s worth of junk email – is the receipt?! Good news: There’s one great tool that tracks all your purchases for you – automatically.
I’ve tried a number of web services that aggregate purchases and track shipments, regardless of vendor or shipper. Sites like Fara, Boxoh, and PackageTrackr all track your packages, but most don’t do a whole lot more than you could do for yourself. With Fara, for example, you need to start by forwarding them your purchase confirmation emails. But if you need to take that extra step, you might as well just put your confirmations in their own little folder yourself. What I want is for everything to be automatic.
Best Tool: Slice
With Slice, you sign up and link the email accounts you use for online shopping. Then Slice combs through your inbox and grabs all the order confirmations, shipping notifications, and e-receipts that online retailers send you. The beauty is that when you click the buy button at Amazon or Gap.com, for example, you don’t have to do ANYTHING else. Slice tracks everything for you.
After you make your purchase, Slice keeps an eye on the price. If it drops considerably, Slice notifies you. That means you can ask the retailer for a refund. This works on over a thousand retail websites. Ka-ching!
Did you actually order that scarf for Aunt Peg? Instead of combing through your email to check – or if you ever need to make a return – you can just log in to Slice, where you know all your receipts from online purchases will be in one place.
Especially during the holiday season, the real power of Slice is its package tracking. As shipping notices start piling into your inbox, Slice grabs the tracking numbers and shows you where the packages are and when they will arrive.
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[Related: Amazon Shopping Secrets ]