These are projects posted by the students of Dr. Gove Allen at Brigham Young University. These students have taken one semester-long course on VBA and generally have had no prior programming experience

Friday, December 10, 2010

Classified Ads Deal Finder

Executive Summary

I, like many people, enjoy browsing online classified listings and looking for a good deal. One problem I have noticed while looking at items on these websites is that I don't really know if many of the items listed are a good deal because I do not know what they may be worth. I have found that using the internet is a good way to overcome this problem, thanks to the existence of comparison shopping websites like and Google Shopping. Unfortunately, using these websites to find the value of individual items can be time-consuming, and I have found that I usually only do it for items that I am already familiar with. This prevents me from finding deals on products that may be similar but have a less familiar brand or model name.

To resolve this problem, I determined to make a program using VBA and web queries to pull a list of recently listed items and look up their values on the internet. Since this is done by the computer, it is much faster than searching manually and allows me to more easily evaluate the listed price. For ease of evaluation, I have the results display in a spreadsheet along with the discount being offered from the average internet price. These discount percentages are highlighted in different colors to illustrate which listings are the best "deals."



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