Check out our guide to finding the cheapest laptops in the UK

If you're looking to save money on a new laptop then there are some very important steps to follow to enable you to get the very best prices available. Firstly you'll need to decide exactly what the laptop is going to be used for. While this might sound a little silly, your requirements as an end user will determine the amount of power and storage needed from your laptop. You'll then be able to cut out any unnecessary expenses from the price of your purchase.

For example, if you're looking to play the latest video games then you're going to need a very powerful laptop with a top quality graphics card and plenty of RAM. This will obviously cost you quite a bit extra.

If you're just looking to browse the web and do some occasional word processing or spreadsheet work, then an inexpensive netbook will do you just fine. However it's worth remembering that netbooks don't have the same capacity for upgrade as traditional laptops, and often the specs that come out of the box are as good as the machine can possibly get, so if you don't mind buying again two or three years down the line then a netbook is the ideal solution for you.

Of course there are many people who find that their needs sit somewhere between light use and intensive gaming, and for these people large hard drive, reasonably sized display and excellent battery life is exactly what's required.

Now that you know what your laptop will be used for, it's time to go searching for bargains. The best places to find laptops at great prices are usually on the websites of reputable retailers you will already be familiar with, such as Tesco, ASDA, PC World and Dixons. However there are also specialist stores which boast some of the cheapest laptops in the UK that you should check out before committing to buying elsewhere.

On this front, we would recommend laptopsdirect.co.uk, europc.co.uk and shoplaptop.co.uk for the best deals. Good luck with your hunt, and remember that if you don't find a price that's right for you immediately, just wait a few weeks and check out what the next items to go on special offer are. You're never too far away from finding the perfect laptop for you at a bargain price.

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