October 26, 2014
You may have already started clearing your browsing history – or changing browsers altogether – when hunting down online airfares in order to make sure you're always seeing the best price. But how many other hack gymnastics are you performing in order to make sure you are seeing all variable pricing options when shopping online?
According to WSJ Digits, a team of researchers at Northwestern University recently set out to find out just how many online dollars are being wasted when consumers overpay as a result of A/B Testing. It's not so much that users are being discriminated against, say the retail giants using these practices, but more that split testing is an effective and proven method of doing business. In a world where all possible data is being mined on consumers, it's a good idea to simply know how and where your data is being collected, and determine the method that will still land you the best price.
The study offered a surprising finding: despite e-commerce business from a mobile device being on a sharp incline, mobile shoppers accessing Home Depot were shown prices that were about $100 higher than those shown on a desktop browser. While thorough studies are not available to show the data on this, it means that checking prices across different devices might be one of the many ways you can check to make sure you're getting the best deal. Other well-known advice includes registering on the retailer's site to benefit from the abandoned shopping cart discount.
And back to airfare shopping, new information points to Sunday, not Tuesday as previously held, as the preferred day to get the best deals.
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