Even in a tight economy, we must all still eat. Although coupons are generally a popular method of saving money on groceries, you should not stop there in your quest to save on food. Below are some ideas about how to save when you stock your shelves.
Have a List
First, have a grocery list. And, have the discipline to stick to the list. The impulse buys are where grocery stores make big profits. The magazines near the check-out, the candy, the lip balm, etc. Sticking to the list will save you at least $10 per week
Most households receive grocery fliers in the mail or as an insert in the daily newspaper or community paper. If not, you can always pick up a flier as you enter the store. The key is to using the fliers is to spot the in-store bargains. It is better to do this before you shop because you can target the store that has the best deals on your household staples. If reading the flyers before you go is not possible, then use them at the store to target your shopping.
There are always exceptions to the "keep to the list" rule. If a staple is on sale, such as a buy-one-get-one-free sale, it may be a good time to stock up. Obviously, you can only stock up on items that can be stored. For example, if your local grocery store is offering a 10-for-$10 sale on canned vegetables it is time to take advantage and stock up. Buy 10 cans of vegetables that you can use throughout the year at family dinners and for special occasions such as Easter and Thanksgiving.
Be Careful About Coupons
Coupons are important but remember that coupons are really designed to get you to buy something that you might not otherwise buy. Therefore, only cut out coupons for items you really use, and make sure that you do the math when you use coupons. If another brand is on sale, make sure you still save money by using the coupon. If not, save it for the next shopping trip.
Check Store Brand Prices
Great deals can be found when you buy store brand or unbranded products. Most of the store brand products are made in the same factories that make the national brands. The name-brand plant is also canning for the non-brand or the store brand. One might suggest that the quality is not quite the same, but most likely the difference, if there is one, will not be noticed by your family. Often, the store brands and the non-branded products are priced 20% or more less than the name brands. Stores like Aldi specialize in non-branded and store-branded products.
In a tight economy, all areas of your life need to be examined for savings including the basic necessities such as groceries. Ideas like sticking to your list, using the sale flyers, and buying non-branded items can save you money every week with little effort on your part.