Shipping costs can make anybody want a hug.

I never really got into online shopping until college, but I’m totally hooked now.  I’m a loyal Amazon user, and am consistently amazed by their endless selection and impressive deals.  It makes driving out to a store where I’ll pay twice as much seem pretty silly.  Here are a few apps/extensions I’ve found that make the online shopping experience even better.

Filler Item Finder

Shipping costs…oh those shipping costs. That $5 really is a downer.  We all know that Amazon offers free, and not too-terribly-slow, shipping on orders of more than $25.  I’ve found myself more than once in a situation where I have an order of $24 and some change, and just need one more chachka to get over the hump.  If you need some help finding that elusive cheap crap, head to filleritemfinder.com.  All you need to do here is enter how much you need to spend to get free shipping, and the site will generate a list of cheap items on Amazon you can buy to qualify.  There is really a shockingly large market for $1 or less car parts on Amazon…who knew?

Amazon Discount Search

The next tip is a super-handy Firefox Extension called Amazon Discount Search.  This is pretty easy to explain: right click at any time, scroll through the extension’s menu to choose the category of item you’re interested in, and what percentage markdown you prefer.  You’ll immediately be taken to a page with all of Amazon’s current discounts that met your criteria.  It’s an incredibly convenient tool for the bargain shopper (and really, who isn’t these days?)

Wish List

Finally, there’s the Amazon Universal Wish List Firefox extension.  Amazon’s wish list feature is great for tipping off friends and family to what you may be eyeing for your birthday, or even just for keeping track of your material desires over time.  This extension will let you instantly add any item from any website to your Amazon wish list.  That way, if you see some awesome gadget on Hackcollege, but don’t have the patience to find the corresponding item on Amazon.com, you can add it to your wish list and deal with it later.

Photo by Flickr user sⓘndy²º¹º licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0