The pro's guide to scoring designer discounts

Here's how to navigate the booming world of online sample sales -- with secret shopping strategies for snagging the most sought-after items.

1 of 6
BACKNEXT
ideeli
ideeli
Who does it: 2.9 million members. Enrolling is free at ideeli.com/cnnmoney

How it works: Events start at noon each day and last 40 hours, or until the goods are gone. Sales offer apparel, accessories, home items, and kids fashions at up to 80% off. There are also weekly giveaway contests -- a recent one features a two-day golf getaway -- with surprise start times. Members are notified by e-mail, Facebook and Twitter each time a new sale or giveaway starts.

But discounts have a cost: Ideeli fan Sonia Marti, a fashion production coordinator, pays close attention to expected shipping dates, which can be several weeks away. "I don't want to wait for a month and a half to get my order -- especially if it's something seasonal like those summer sandals I only wore twice by the time summer was over," she says.

Secret strategy: To get an edge on the competition, shoppers can log on at 10 a.m. and browse each sale. You can also buy your way into a head start: "First row" members, who pay $7 a month, can start shopping an hour before everyone else.

What you can snag: A little bit of everything, including Betsey Johnson, Marc by Marc Jacobs, Nicole Miller, Max Mara, Jessica Simpson, Pucci, Sony Music, Furla Handbags, Calvin Klein Home, Cuisinart and LeSportsac luggage.

Ultimate score: The Baby Twin Espresso Maker (pictured), available now, for $475, regularly $699.


NEXT: Gilt Groupe
Last updated November 03 2010: 2:46 PM ET
  • Find Homes for sale
    Real estate and homes for sale on Trulia

  • Property Type
  • Find a home in:
  • New York | Atlanta | Chicago | Los Angeles
  • Washington D.C | Houston | Philadelphia | More options
More Galleries
A cheapskate's guide to tech From ebooks to phone service, here are some tips for living your digital life on the cheap. More
2015 Mustang's asphalt-peeling power goes modern The new Ford Mustang has been upgraded and updated to compete globally - but never fear, it's still a monster. More
15 top executives with $1 salaries Some CEOs and founders agree to salaries of just $1 a year. But once goodies like bonuses and stock options are added in, some of those executives end up taking home many millions of dollars a year. More

Special Offer
Market indexes are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer The Dow Jones IndexesSM are proprietary to and distributed by Dow Jones & Company, Inc. and have been licensed for use. All content of the Dow Jones IndexesSM © 2014 is proprietary to Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Chicago Mercantile Association. The market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved. Most stock quote data provided by BATS.