If you're into saving money this Christmas shopping season, I've got some tips for you to help you get the most bang for your buck.

You may have seen ads on TV for Wal-Mart's price guarantee. If you buy something at Wal-Mart during the holiday season and show them proof of the same item advertised cheaper elsewhere from a traditional brick-and-mortar retailer, they'll give you a gift card for the difference.

But did you know that for years now, you may be able to get a lower price just by bargaining in traditional retail stores? I'm not talking about if you're dealing with cashier at a discount store; they're probably not empowered to do a price reduction. I'm talking about with the management.

Even in big chain stores, the managers have the power to negotiate with you. Yet most people are too embarrassed to even consider this option. For those who are too sheepish to do it face to face, you can try it online too.

Online shoppers can send an e-mail to an online retailer saying where you saw the same item advertised for cheaper and ask them if they'll beat the price. If you are customer with a high profitability index score based on your historical shopping pattern, you have a higher chance they will offer you a better deal.

As far as the online world goes, retailers won't get the sale this season if they charge you for shipping. Free shipping has become almost like a given. You shouldn't need a special coupon code to get free shipping. You should only be using codes to get meaningful discounts.

Speaking of technology, just about all the traditional web shopping sites now have either apps or mobile web sites. You can do comparison shopping right then and there when you're standing in a store. I even have an app where I can take a picture of a barcode at a store and it will automatically go shop that item to find the best deal for me.  

Image of Clark Howard About the author: Clark Howard

Clark Howard is a consumer expert whose goal is to help you keep more of the money you make. His national radio show and website show you ways to save more, spend less and avoid getting ripped off. View More Articles

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