California blogger helps shoppers 'crack the price code' - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

California blogger helps shoppers 'crack the price code'

A clearance price tag at a major retailer. (File/FOX Carolina) A clearance price tag at a major retailer. (File/FOX Carolina)
GREENVILLE, SC (FOX Carolina) -

A popular California blogger is helping shoppers squeeze the savings out of any item by simply "cracking the price code."

Kyle James, author of Rather-Be-Shopping.com, uses insider information to help shoppers save big.

"Some were former employees, and they were happy to share the information," James said in a Skype interview with FOX Carolina.

He said shoppers should use more common sense by paying more attention to the cents on price tags.

For example, James said at Target an item ending in $0.99 is full price.

At Gap and Old Navy, however, he learned if an item ends in $0.99 or $0.97, it is marked down to the lowest price.

"At Costco, if it ends in $0.99, it's full price," said James. "If it ends in $0.97, it's a discounted price. And if it has a little asterisk in the upper right-hand corner, that means it's a discounted item. That means when it's gone, it's gone. It's typically 20 to 30 percent cheaper than anywhere else you're going to find it."

James said corporations are understandably hesitant to share their secrets.

And at Best Buy in Greenville, consultant Charles Morris said customers are always wanting to know if an item will be marked down further. To help shoppers out, Best Buy offers a 15-day price match policy.

"You buy a product at Best Buy. If it does go on sale within the next 15 days, you get a refund," Morris said.

Customers can easily check the price on the store's items in comparison with its website and other retailers by scanning the price tag with a smart phone.

"If it happens to be on sale on our website, we'll absolutely price-match it," Morris said. "If it happens to be on sale on another major retailer's website, like Amazon or New Egg, we'll match them as well."

And another major retailer uses codes on their price tags a little differently. James said at Home Depot, if a price ends in six, it means six weeks until the next price change.

James said it can pay to wait, as many stores have dates on their price tags. And the older the date, the more likely the item will be marked down if it is not sold.

"Make sure you crack the code, throw a coupon on top of it, and you can really maximize your savings," James said.

For more examples on how to read hints on price tags, click here.

FOX Carolina tried reaching out to many retailers who would neither confirm nor deny the price-tag secrets, including Best Buy, who would not comment on whether older-dated price tags mean an upcoming markdown.

Copyright 2014 FOX Carolina (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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