I especially love saving money when shopping for groceries. It's like second nature to me to save $40 or $50 at the grocery store when I shop. People behind me in line are always amazed at how much money I save on my groceries! Of course there's an occasional person behind me at the grocery store who wishes they chose a different lane because I have so many coupons!
There are so many easy ways you can save money when buying groceries. If you're new at this, don't be overwhelmed. It's really not that difficult or time consuming. Here are my favorite tips:
- Clip coupons! Clipping coupons is the single biggest way to save money on groceries. Combine a coupon with a store sale and you have big savings! Be sure to clip all of the coupons, even if you know you won’t use the items. You can share coupons with neighbors or even trade. This is successful if you find someone that likes different coupons than you. For example, I trade with my mom sometimes because she doesn’t need coupons for snack foods or kid’s foods like I do. If you're interested in serious trading of coupons, join a coupon train on various websites including A Full Cup or Hot Coupon World.
- Print coupons. You can print so many coupons online these days that you almost don't even need to buy the newspaper! Check out these sites for printable coupons: Smartsource, Redplum and Coupons.com.
- Know the prices of staple items. These are items you buy every week (i.e. bread, milk, cheese, etc). Write down the prices of the top items you buy every week and carry that list with you when you're shopping. When there is a sale or promotion, you’ll know if it’s a good deal or not. If you shop for beef, pork or poultry every week, check out this article from For the Mamas with great information about good "stock-up" pricing.
- Do a little research. This can be done a few different ways and you can put as much or as little time into it as you like. You can review Sunday advertisements in your local newspaper. You can find websites that will do alot of the work for you and they tell you what is on sale at certain grocery chains and they even give you links to coupons and help you make a grocery list! This is my favorite way to do research! A few of my favorite sites: Southern Savers, Coupon Mom, Swag Grabber, and Abundant Food Savings.
- Make a list. Don't forget to make a list of things you need and take it to the store. Going grocery shopping without a list will surely mean you spend too much money on things you don't really need.
- Use price-matching. Does your local grocery store have a price-matching policy? If you don't know, you should find out. You can ask a cashier, customer service desk or go onto their website to find out. National supercenters Wal-Mart and Target each have price-matching policies. I use Wal-Mart's price-matching policy regularly. I simply present the advertisement of the competitor to my cashier and show her the price of the item that I am buying and she/he will do a price override. It really does pay to use price-matching policies.
- Shop high and low – in the store, that is. Look around your grocery store for markdowns. They aren't always in the most convenient places and they may up high or down low. Many stores use end caps to house markdown items. Another trick is to know when markdowns are taken in your stores and shop on those days.
- Stack coupons to save more money. This is really the secret to saving money. What does "stacking" coupons mean? It's easy! Stacking refers to the fact that you can use a manufacturer's coupon plus a store coupon for the same item. Not all stores allow this. The national stores that do allow this where I shop are Target and CVS. Where can you find store coupons? You can find Target store coupons here plus use the register receipt Target store coupons. You can find CVS coupons here or use the register receipts you get (Extra Care Bucks) when you shop in store.
You can find more frugal tips in the blog meme "Frugal Friday" on Living as a Mom. Check it out or use Mr. Linky to add your own frugal tips.