We’ve all been there before: at first, we were just absentmindedly scrolling through our Instagram feed when we come across a beautifully made travel bag or trendy sneakers posted by a brand account. Next thing we know, we’ve placed our order and we’re ready to make a purchase.
Everything happened too fast! When the order arrives at our door, our satisfaction levels are high. But in mere days we realize we didn’t really need the product in the first place.
Temptation is everywhere in the digital era, and it’s becoming harder and harder to save money. With the rise of technology and social media, online shopping is just one easy click away. If you fall prey to too many ill-considered purchases, you will soon have bad financial habits.
So how do you save money in the digital era?
1. Set up automatic deposits into your saving accounts
Establish a budget, period. When you have an accurate view of your income and expenses, you can start improving your personal finances. Once you have set a budget and clear goals, get in the habit of saving money by automating the process. Set up regular and automatic deposits into your savings and investments accounts, either directly from your paycheck or from your checking account.
2. Get a money buddy
According to an MIT study, friends with similar traits can pick up good habits from each other. Financial planners also recommend having someone to hold you accountable for the task at hand to increase effectiveness and deliver stronger results.
Consider using the concept to save more money. You don’t need a finance whiz, you can find a partner in a friend, a parent, a sibling, or your own spouse. Set an achievable savings goal and ask your money buddy to monitor your progress and keep you on track.
3. Solo shopping
When it comes to shopping, it’s fun to shop with company. For the sake of personal finance, however, it’s better to shop alone. In a fun and relaxed mood, your friends might encourage you to buy more things than you intended. Obviously, it’s not healthy for your financial condition.
If you still want some company, ask your money buddy to accompany you. They are monitoring your personal finance progress, after all – chances are they won’t suggest shopping as a way to have fun in the first place.
4. When you get a raise, raise your savings too
Everyone says they would save more when they have more. But do people actually do it? When we get a raise, usually the first thing we do is buy something expensive to celebrate the occasion. Maybe a handbag, or plane tickets to a dream destination.
Celebratory spending is fine. Some self-reward is healthy. But remember to increase your automatic monthly transfer to savings as well. It might be painful now, but you will reach your personal finance goals faster if you allot more money to your savings and investments from a younger age.
Ultimately, saving enough money comes down to willpower and contentment. Do you have enough willpower to save? Are you okay with not having more right now? If you can develop both these qualities, you will grow wealthy over time.
This article was written by Funding Societies, the first SME Digital Financing and Debt Investment Platform in Malaysia. We provide working capital financing for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs); we also offer investment opportunities with returns up to 14% per year. To learn more about us, click on our website here.
You can also see our up-to-date progress and statistics in Southeast Asia here.