You’ve probably heard by now that good old Funan DigitaLife Mall will cease operations come June 30th and thereafter, be redeveloped into an integrated development. Construction is said to last at least for the next three years.
This was probably to be expected as the shopping demographic has largely shifted online in recent times. Leading consumer analytics company Nielsen has even gone on to say that there has been exponential growth among Singaporeans when making purchases through e-commerce, making them “among the most active online purchasers globally across a broad range of products and services“.
But first let’s get the elephant in the room out of the way before we fully move online.
Sim Lim Square
I’m talking about Sim Lim Square of course. Arch enemy of those who are ill-prepared when shopping there, Sim Lim Square actually has some reputable shops that you can patronize, some of which happen to also have a branch in Funan. For nearly 30 years, Sim Lim Square have been the go-to place for any PC DIY enthusiast.
Consumers are generally advised to head to shops that have the ‘STARetailer‘ certificates displayed at the entrance. Your due diligence will be paid off, with enough research, you can actually get some great deals here. You can always head to the local tech forums such as HardWareZone and VR-Zone, to see where enthusiasts usually get their wares from. Also available there are the price lists of several trusted shops!
Well then, now it’s time to head on online.
The seasoned online shoppers of you may have heard of ShopBack. It is a website whereby you can track the latest deals and coupons from various online retailers internationally. What’s more is that you will be able to earn additional cashback on all your purchases on top of those discounts. With an extensive list of stores to choose from you can basically buy anything!
Need some guidance on how to use ShopBack? Read on.
So How Do You ShopBack?
ShopBack is an online shopping portal that helps you save money, every time you shop online! Earn up to 30% Cashback whenever you purchase items from over 500 of your favourite brands including Lazada, RedMart, ZALORA, Groupon, Net-a-Porter, Muji and many more. Best of all, ShopBack’s service is completely free – no sign-up fees or monthly payments. Here’s a quick 5-step guide on how you can earn attractive Cashback from your online purchases:
1.Log On To https://www.shopback.sg
From the main site, navigate through ShopBack’s categories to find the online store of your choice.
2.Get Redirected To The Online Store You Desire
Once you’ve found your desired store, simply click on ‘Shop Now’ and your tab will be redirected to the online store’s page. Remember to read the Terms & Conditions before you start shopping, so that you’ll receive your Cashback without any disruptions.
3.Shop As You Normally Would
Once you’re redirected, do ensure that your purchase is done in the same window. After completing the transaction, your items will be tracked – which means Cashback is on the way!
4.Hold On For The Email Confirmation!
5. Get Paid REAL CASH
Once the validation period is over, you’ll be able to cashout your earnings via bank transfer or Paypal. Do note, to be able to successfully redeem your Cashback, you will need at least SGD 10.01 in your ShopBack account. Simply head to your ‘My Cashback Information’ and click on ‘Redeemable’. To cashout your loots, simply click on ‘Request Payout’. It’s that easy! That’s all you need to do to earn Cashback from ShopBack.
Funan Is Closing, What Now?
With the impending closure of Funan looming, you may wonder where could you buy all your new gadgets from.
After you’ve done bringing your ShopBack account up to speed, we recommend these 10 websites which you should be visiting when making that next tech purchase.
1. Lazada (Up to 12.0% Cashback)
Lazada is fast becoming a fan favourite among the local tech community. This is mainly due the fact that several notable distributors have set up shop there. Expect familiar names such as Convergent Systems, Corbell Technology, and Wacom, among many others. From the latest graphics card to the coolest mechanical keyboards, you can get everything you need here to build that ultimate dream desk.
On top of discount codes, on certain days, you are able to receive discounts when using certain credit or bank cards.
Here are two ways you can do that:
1. ShopBack-Visa Promotion – Up to 14% Cashback
This promotion is limited to first 500 customers daily only. Promotion is valid from 1st April to 31st December 2016.
This promotion on Lazada happens every Saturday and Sunday – 10% off every purchase with Citibank credit card, discount capped at $25
2. Qoo10 (Up to 2.0% Cashback)
While Lazada is being known because of the major tech distributors there, Qoo10 on the other hand is earning rave reviews for being home to several digital shopfronts of brick and mortar stores. Some stores from both Funan and Sim Lim Square can be found here. Also the availability of a large selection of mobile accessories has also made it a go-to place for your USB cables and cases for your new phones.
The allure of Qoo10 is the use of coupons and points system to offset the cost of your items. With all these add ons, it will mean that you could potentially be spending way less than if you were to buy something outright from a shop.
It is also a hotspot for gadgets direct from South Korea. Sellers are listing the wares of the usual suspects Samsung and LG, as well as accessories such as hard drives and monitors from other Korean brands. An example would be well-known underground monitor brands such as QNIX and Crossover.
3. eBay (1.0% Cashback)
Long before Lazada and Qoo10 made their way into our wallets, eBay has always been a cult favourite for tech items not easily available locally. Back in the days of the first iPhone, or fast forward to the launch of the first Google Nexus phone, this was the place to be.
Now though eBay is mostly seen as an online garage of spare parts and accessories for cheap. That few years old desktop or laptop computer that you have collecting dust in a corner can be brought to life with a few change of parts. You can scour through the website for hard to find spare parts from sellers globally.
4. Courts (Up to 4.0% Cashback)
Local retailer Courts is definitely not a stranger. Am sure someone in your family has, at one point, bought electronics or home appliances from one of their many outlets. Lately though, they are making inroads towards e-commerce by offering the same selections online as what you can find in any of their stores. Isn’t it time for you to get that new TV for your living room?
5. Newegg (1.0% Cashback)
Ever since the American retailer expanded its operations to our shores 2 years ago, newegg has become a viable alternative for PC enthusiasts to plan their next acquisition for that all important upgrade. The beauty of this website is that now you have access to computers parts which may be unavailable locally.
The only thing you have to be wary about is warranty. As the items are not by our local distributors, you may have to factor in the time and cost to ship back to its country of origin should anything go wrong. Also note that prices may not be dramatically cheaper than from buying from local online sources. Their shipping charges are not the most affordable around either.
6. Expansys (2.0% Cashback)
This online retailer from Hong Kong specializes in the latest mobile phones and accessories, such as smart watches. Looking for a Nexus 5x recently? They have it on sale right now. Feeling adventurous to try a new type of phone? Try the Yotaphone. Mainstream brands and models are available but with a caveat. As the phones are considered an export set, local service centers will in most likelihood refuse repair should you have issues. Expansys though provide a 12 month warranty for all their mobile phones, so buyers will have to go through them if anything arises.
7. Adorama (1.0% Cashback)
Local photographers and photography hobbyist would undoubtedly know Adorama. The American retailer keeps stock of an almost endless choice of photography equipment in its catalogue. While most people won’t usually recommend buying cameras here, due to warranty issues of imported sets, it is the accessories that buyers are usually after. Lighting equipment and modifiers, camera bags, lenses, tripods, light stands and many more. International brands and models not usually found locally are available. Their shipping charges are reasonable too, given the nature of what they’re selling.
8. Creative (2.0% Cashback)
Local consumer audio manufacturer Creative continuously pumps out value for money products each year. Though it’s been 3 years since they shuttered their last physical store for good, they have since shifted their focus to the various IT and PC Shows, and more importantly, towards their online store. Headphones and speakers that fit any budget are available, as well as their legendary sound cards for the PC DIY enthusiasts. Also, you can avoid the crowds of the IT and PC Shows by buying online instead, as usually they offer the same deals as well as often times, extend the deals too.
9. Thinkgeek (Up To 4.0% Cashback)
All the serious tech out of the way, Funan was also a place where you can find lots of tech novelty items around. Get some ideas for your next home and office decoration plans, and shop for merchandise of your favorite games and television shows here. Good thing too that ThinkGeek now offers direct shipping to Singapore, so that you can bypass the hassle of going through forwarders.
10. Tokyo Otaku Mode (4.0% Cashback)
In the years leading to the impending redevelopment of Funan, there has been a steady stream of Japanese anime related stores flourishing so much so that people were drawing comparisons to Akihabara. Toys are tech too, and at Tokyo Otaku Mode, you can find most of the popular characters from Japan. From figurines, plushies, music and video content, to apparel and cosplay, you can find it all.
Guess all that’s left to be said is; enjoy the floors of Funan for now while you still can. Funan is more than just a mall to some people, it is an institution to all who love the latest technology and gadgets, and a place to get together and share that common love.