As an Internet-savvy Krazy Coupon Lady, you probably read a bunch of couponing blogs in addition to this one.

While reading numerous couponing blogs helps maximize your exposure to different coupons and deals, manually having to check and recheck each website for updates can be a time-consuming and frustrating endeavor. Sometimes you miss out on amazing deals because you are unable to check your sites and a clutch posting gets buried, or other times you may see a great deal on a site but fail to make a note of it and then later forget which site you saw it on and don’t have the time to partake in an Indiana Jones-style recovery mission all over the web to track it down!

To truly take full advantage of the vast network of couponing blogs, you need to learn how to make the technology work for you, not against you. Fortunately, that’s where Google Reader comes in. Google Reader is a free, web-based reader that allows the user to subscribe to any website with an RSS feed. RSS, which stands for Rich Site Summary or Real Simple Syndication, is a format for delivering regularly changing web content that is used by many news-related sites, blogs, and other online publishers. Google Reader automatically gathers all the new content from your subscribed websites and then lets you read, search, and organize this content in your Reader account.

How to Set Up and Use Google Reader: The Basics

  1. Create a free Google account to use Google Reader.
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  2. Go to Google Reader and sign in with your Google account username and password you created in Step 1 (or sign in with your preexisting Google account information).
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  3. Add website subscriptions to your Google Reader account.So long as the site has an RSS feed, you can subscribe to it. Click on the red “Subscribe” button in the left column of your screen (see image below). Then enter the web address for the website you want to subscribe to and click the “Add” button. The maximum number of subscriptions is 15,000, so add away!
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  4. In the left column (see image below) you will see all the websites that you have subscribed to. The number in parenthesis next to the website name indicates how many new postings there are on the website, if any. Google Reader will keep track of which postings you have read. Just like in a Gmail email account, you can mark read items as read or unread, delete items, and organize subscriptions into categorized folders.
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How to Use Google Reader to Track and Organize Coupons and Deals

Aggregate and Access Content in One Place: Instead of spending your valuable time individually visiting each of the couponing sites that you follow, you can now use Google Reader to get a "quick glance" of all the coupons and deals the sites are posting in just a few minutes’ time. With Google Reader, “customize” your consumer/reader experience because you can pick and choose to read the deals and postings that are relevant to you and then you can also “star” important items that you want to go back to later.

“Search” for Savings: Google Reader creates a searchable database of all the read and unread items from your subscriptions. For example, if you’re looking for coupons for cereal, you would simply type “cereal” in the search box in Google Reader:
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After hitting “enter,” Google Reader returns the following search results for “cereal” (the search results, which are returned in chronological order, represent every time the word “cereal’ appeared in any read or unread item from one of your subscriptions in your Google Reader account):
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It’s easy to see how this search function would be useful if you were looking for cereal deals or something more specific such as a brand coupon (e.g., “Special K”), manufacturer’s coupon (e.g., “Kellogg’s”), or a store coupon (e.g.,”Target”). You could even use the Google Reader search function to search for terms such as “BOGO,” “Moneymaker,” “freebie,” “Las Vegas,” or “American Airlines.” The Google Reader search function is easy, quick, and powerful. It’s a game-changer. Give it a try. I promise that while Google Reader may seem a bit complicated here, the program will soon become as intuitive and easy to use as email.

 

Tech Tip: Use Google Reader to Track Coupons and Deals from Couponing Blogs