Receipts Nice and Neat with Online Back-to-School Shopping

The 4th of July has come and gone, and we all know what that means — summer is half-over. It’s always at this point in the year when I realize how much I need to start appreciating the benefits of warm weather, time with friends and family, and extra hours of sunlight. But the holiday weekend signals one more important transition — it’s time to start thinking about back-to-school shopping! What color binders are “in” this year? Which pen has the most comfortable grip? Which books do I really need to buy to pass this class? All valid questions.

For most of my life, buying school supplies required making a trip to Target or Office Max with my list. Even at college, I went to the local book store to pick out my textbooks. That is, until I realized I was getting ripped off. But back-to-school shopping isn’t what it used to be. Last year, more than twenty percent of pre-college shopping was done online. This is significant increase from even three years ago when I was a freshman entering college.

As I mentioned in a previous blog entitled, “Technology Takes Online Shopping to the Top”, retailers are incorporating photos, videos, and even audio into interactive and flashy platforms — all to help consumers make more informed decisions and purchases. Websites that feature binders, notebooks, bedding, textbooks, or cheap college furniture now have dynamic product pictures that help make the shopping process fun, personal, and reliable. You know exactly what you are getting because you can look at it from all angles, in all colors and sizes.

According to recent articles, there may also be a benefit to keeping track of the receipts from your back-to-school shopping sprees. The Minnesota Department of Revenue, for instance, has encouraged parents to hold on to their school supplies receipts. Many of these items can help qualify Minnesota residents for a tax credit or subtraction on their Minnesota income tax return. Some of the eligible expenses include:

Textbooks that are used in public school grades K-12: paper, pens, pencils, notebooks, rulers, and special supplies needed for shop, family consumer science and art classes, and up to $200 of computer hardware or educational software.

It’s just another example of how online shopping is becoming increasingly integrated into our everyday lives. At this point, very few people make all of their purchases on the internet — but it won’t be long before it becomes a significant part of our lives. Do yourself a favor and check out so you can start getting organized today.