Gephardt Busts Inflation: How browser extensions can help beat rising prices online

Apr 12, 2022, 10:30 PM | Updated: 11:27 pm

SALT LAKE CITY – Escaping the rising prices on nearly everything is becoming harder and harder for Utahns to do. Consider Tuesday’s report from the U.S. Labor Department showing inflation has reached a 40-year high.

But with the help of plug-ins for your internet browser, your computer can help you make sure you are paying the lowest price for nearly everything, saving you money without having to make drastic lifestyle changes.

Finding the best price

Online shopping is easy: type, click and await the package to show up at your front door. Alas, with countless websites selling and reselling just about everything you could ever need, one aspect of online shopping has become quite difficult – getting the best price. Or in some cases, just avoiding getting gouged.

Take, for example, Philip and Carla Carrol who I reported on last year.

Gephardt: How drop shipping can leave Amazon customers paying much more for products

They purchased some fish fertilizer on Amazon.com, assuming the price was at least in the ballpark. It wasn’t until the product arrived with a receipt in the box that the Carrols learned that they were really dealing with a third-party seller and they had paid about double the going rate.

“Just because it’s Amazon, it’s just not always the lowest price,” Philip told us.

Philip and Carla Carrol learned that e-tailing giant Amazon may not always offer the lowest price.

Knowing you got a bargain is more important than ever with prices skyrocketing, says shopping expert Trae Bodge.

“I am seeing a lot of price hikes,” Bodge said of today’s shopping climate.

Price searching with browser extensions

When asked what tricks she has up her sleeve to help KSL viewers shop online, Bodge said the easiest is to use a browser extension.

“It’s free to do. It takes a couple seconds,” she said.

What is an extension, you ask? You have likely seen them while surfing the web. It’s that little puzzle piece icon in the browser’s upper right-hand corner. Basically, it is an add-on or plug-in that you can attach to your web browser.

“These are tools that essentially make your browser smarter,” Bodge explained.

Some extensions are programmed to scour the internet to make sure you are getting the best price.

“And then it does so much work for you in the background to help you save money, even when you don’t expect it,” said Bodge.

Putting shopping extensions to the test

Could it be that simple? KSL producer Sloan Schrage and I sat down to see.

KSL’s Matt Gephardt and KSL producer Sloan Schrage test out how free browser extensions can save shoppers money.

First things first – we needed to download a shopping extension. We started with Capitol One Shopping, a popular extension offered by the folks at Capitol One. And since baseball season just kicked off, I went looking for new gear for my favorite team on a website where I have shopped before: Fanatics. I found a hat, put it in the cart, and in the mere seconds I tried to persuade Sloan, a Rockies fan, to root for the Mets instead, the extension found a coupon somewhere on the internet for an automatic $8.40 in savings.

We had similar saving experiences on another website, though discounts were not always found.

We tried a few other popular extensions and quickly learned they don’t all work the same. Some did price comparisons amongst other internet retailers to find the cheapest price. Others searched the web for coupon codes we could apply at checkout. And others had us earning points which we could then collect and submit for cash back.

We also found shoppers are not limited to using one extension at a time. We found a digital camera selling for $1,598 on Amazon. The Ibotta shopping extension told us to “hold up,” we can get it for $28.05 cheaper from another online store. At the very same time, the Capitol One Shopping extension found us a price of $1,474.16 for the same camera – a savings of $123.84.

Popular browser extension Ibotta found a $28 savings on a camera, while the Capitol One Shopping extension found nearly $124 in savings for the same item.

“I was stocking up on something I always get,” said Bodge. “I had my browser extension installed. I got a little alert that there was a 20% off deal. I saved 20% and I wasn’t even expecting to do so.”

Bodge said there is no harm in using any bona fide shopping extension, and in the process, bring what you pay down and bust inflation.

“To me, anything that’s automated that helps you save money, I am all in,” she said.

You should know

Here are two things you should know: First, I had to register for each extension I used with an email address. You had better believe that I have seen a spike in the number of ads popping up in my inbox.

Second, it is crucial you install browser extensions from popular, trusted sources such as the Chrome Webstore, the Microsoft Store for Edge browser users, or Mozilla for Firefox users. Internet security experts warn using bad extensions could lead to the downloading of malware or viruses onto your computer. And that will more than ruin your shopping experience.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

KSL Investigates

GAS RECORD (Credit: KSL TV)...
Matt Gephardt and Sloan Schrage, KSL TV

Gephardt Busts Inflation: Gas prices reach a record high, again, but you can still save money.

Gas prices across the country have never been higher, but KSL Investigates looks into how you can still save some money.
2 days ago
Edgar Dworsky of Consumer World shows Gatorade has recently shrunk their 32-ounce bottle down to 28...
Matt Gephardt & Sloan Schrage, KSL TV

Gephardt Busts Inflation: ‘Shrinkflation’ emerges as prices climb

You have seen supermarket prices shoot up over the last several months, but does it also seem like the packaging is shrinking? It is not your imagination. It is called shrinkflation – getting less product but paying the same price.
3 days ago
(KSL TV)...
Daniella Rivera, KSL TV

Tracking Transparency: Why some Utah lawmakers use private email accounts for government business

Are Utah’s lawmakers skirting transparency? The KSL Investigators surveyed legislators to find out why some prefer to use private accounts and devices to do public business.
8 days ago
Matt Gephardt & Sloan Schrage, KSL TV

Business takes your money then abruptly shuts down; now what?

Imagine paying a deposit for expensive furniture, only to have the company vanish before you get your stuff. It has become a familiar experience for several Utahns who bought furniture from a Bluffdale store.
10 days ago
Several regulators – foreign and domestic – are cracking down on repair restrictions imposed by...
Matt Gephardt & Sloan Schrage, KSL TV

Repair or replace: The shortening lifespan of consumer goods

As the adage goes, stuff just isn't made the way it used to be. KSL Consumer Investigator Matt Gephardt found there is some powerful evidence it’s true.
11 days ago
FILE PHOTO of workers (Adobe)...
Matt Gephardt, KSL TV

4-day workweek gaining momentum; why employers are smitten with idea

SALT LAKE CITY — While it may sound like the beginning of the end for a company, that work-life balance has some companies saying they wish they had made the switch to a four-day workweek a long time ago. Bosses have tried increasing pay, increasing benefits and increasing flexibility with work-from-home opportunities. But none of […]
15 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Earth day 2022...

How Are You Celebrating Earth Day 2022? | 4 Simple Ways to Celebrate Earth Day and Protect the Environment

Earth Day is a great time to reflect on how we can be more environmentally conscious. Here are some tips for celebrating Earth Day.
Get Money Online...

More Ways to Get Money Online Right Now in Your Spare Time

Here are 4 easy ways that you can get more money online if you have some free time and want to make a little extra on the side.
Lighting trends 2022...

Lighting Trends 2022 | 5 Beautiful Home Lighting Trends You Can Expect to See this Year and Beyond

This is where you can see the latest lighting trends for 2022 straight from the Lightovation Show at the Dallas World Trade Center.
What Can't You Throw Away in the Trash...

What Can’t You Throw Away in the Trash? | 5 Things You Shouldn’t Throw in to Your Trash Can

What can't you throw away in the trash? Believe it or not, there are actually many items that shouldn't be thrown straight into the trash.
Make Money Online Easily...

4 Ways that You Can Make Money Online Easily in Just a Few Clicks

Here are 4 ways that you can make money online easily in no time at all! Some are as simple as just a few clicks away.
tips to winterize your home...
Bonneville Digital SLC

Tips to Winterize Your Home | The Top 5 Ways You Can Prepare for the Cold Utah Winter Ahead

Before the snow hits, here are the top 5 tips to winterize your home to prepare for the cold Utah winter this year.
Gephardt Busts Inflation: How browser extensions can help beat rising prices online