Students and faculty use online shopping to save money

Senior French translation major Missy Strong is familiar with the online world of shopping. Strong enjoys shopping and selling on Ebay, and does so regularly. Photo by Jenna Watson.

Maura Zurick

Students and faculty utilize the benefits of online shopping on and similar websites, where users can buy and sell pretty much anything — and save lots of money in the process.

Missy Strong, senior French translation major, said she sells items on eBay frequently — mainly electronics and books — and makes a good profit.

“I recently sold my old BlackBerry and got so much more than I would have in a store like Best Buy,” Strong said. “The bid option on eBay can be really useful when it comes to saving or making money. I think I got about $80 in profit from it.”

Strong said she also shops sites like and

“You can find really awesome deals that you wouldn’t in the store,” she said.  “I like to shop on Amazon. It is the website I use mostly for books, movies, posters, etc. You can save a lot of money on some of your college books there. I recently just bought a French grammar book that’s usually priced at $100 at Barnes and Noble, for $40 on Amazon. It’s awesome.”

Strong said she uses sites like to find discounts and coupons to save more money.

“It sends out frequent discounts on activities you can do in your area, like massages, movies, restaurants,” she said. “If I can get a deal, I’ll take it.”

Strong said she wouldn’t know what to do without online shopping.

“Online shopping is my thing now,” she said. “I would recommend it if you are looking for bargains because it saves you a lot of money and time. Selling things can give you a couple extra bucks in your pocket for a night out.” 

Dina DeVincentis, graduate student of public relations, said she also uses coupon sites to find discounts.

“I use Groupon all the time,” she said. “I save about $50 a week on groceries, going out and online shipping fees just by using coupon sites.”

DeVincentes said she would recommend that all students shop online and look for deals.

“Online shopping can have better deals than in stores and there’s more of a selection,” she said. “The coolest thing I’ve bought on eBay was a purple Tate Marc Jacobs tote. I saved about $120 by bidding on it on eBay, and I got the color I wanted. Online shopping wins just for convenience sake.”

DeVincentis said there are more perks of online shopping than cons. She said it’s less stressful, less time consuming and can save money.

“If you’re smart about it, you can save yourself a ton of money,” DeVincentis said.


Andy Murgola, junior computer information systems major, said he’s very selective about what sites he uses for online shopping.

“I only use Amazon for new things, eBay for used (items) and ( for video games,” he said.

Murgola said he doesn’t sell many things on eBay anymore because he was scammed by a younger user who purchased a CD and then canceled his card before the transaction was completed.  

“Luckily I was only scammed for like $10, and with a little investigative work I found his parents and told on him,” he said. “Selling things online comes with that risk, though — sometimes people want things but do not want to pay for them.”

Murgola said by using his website,, he was able to save $700-$1,000.

“I created, and it basically compares text book prices from 30 different stores to find the cheapest prices,” he said. “I can usually reduce my textbook cost by about 70 percent by shopping online. Electronics are always cheaper online, too.”

Murgola said he thinks all students should shop online and look for deals.

“I would be outraged if other students didn’t take advantage of online sites,” he said. “Saving money should be every student’s main focus while they are attending college. College is expensive, and so is life. Saving something is better than nothing.”


Carey McDougall, associate art professor, said she loves to shop online.

“I think I might be addicted,” she said. “That’s the downside of shopping online. People can’t pass up good deals, and they’re always right there. It’s just a few clicks of a mouse away.”

McDougall said her favorite item she purchased online was hers and her husband’s wedding rings.

“We bought them off Etsy, and I love them,” she said. “They’re treasures we couldn’t find anywhere else.”

McDougall said selling things online is a great way for creative students to earn extra cash.

“I don’t think selling things online can be the equivalent of earning job salary,” she said. “But students who make things to sell on artsy sites like Etsy can really earn a decent amount.”


Contact Maura Zurick at [email protected].


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