Do you want to slash your grocery budget in half? There are key ways to save money on your next grocery store visit. Whether it’s tomorrow or days from now, these simple steps will lead you on the path to savings.
1. Don’t go to the store hungry. There’s a reason why the bakery and floral department are located in the front of the store when you first walk in. They will heighten you senses. And if you’re hungry, you’ll immediately start to gravitate to buy more. Before you walk into the grocery store, eat a snack. Better yet, bring along a bottle of water to help curb your appetite as you shop those attractive aisles for those bargains.
2. Look up, look down and look close. Store brand items that will sometimes cost less will be located on the bottom shelf or top shelf of your grocery aisle. Look up and look down to find the best price. All stores show the price as well as the price per ounce. Sometimes the bigger box is not the better deal. Read that fine print.
3. Avoid single ingredient grocery trips. If you’re going to shop, do it once a week. Single ingredient trips to the grocery store lead to ten ingredient trips. You forgot this, and then this looks good and oh yes, Suzy wants this. Before you know it, your cart is half full and you only needed milk!
4. Shop alone or with a strategy. My husband likes Doritos. He will buy them. If I shop alone, by myself I am more likely to stick to my mission of saving. If my husband comes with me, we’re at least spending a few extra bucks on Doritos. Shop alone when you can focus on what you need and not necessarily what your family wants. If you shop with children grab those carts that resemble trucks or cars. It helps entertain them while you shop the bargains. With older kids, let them help select items on the grocery list. Also before your trip, let them select one item in the store that has a coupon for you to purchase. Thus they are not asking for something on every aisle that “looks good”. What a great way to train future coupon users.
5. Make a List from the store ad. The number one way to save this week is to make a list of the items you plan to buy using the store ad. If you arrive at the store with no list, grab the ad, walk back to your car. Sit in your car for 5 minutes and make the list. That small amount of time will save you money in the long run. Aimlessly walking the aisles and choosing items that sound good are going to have a bad return on your pocketbook.
6. Cut coupons. Coupons are free money! Check your Sunday newspaper and also online for coupons before you shop. Especially if you follow tip number 5, you’ll know what coupons you’re looking for. If an item is on sale and you have a coupon, you’re going to add to your savings.
7. Stick to your List. And while we’re at it, did I mention you need a list? Hang one on the fridge that you can add to during the week. When it is time to plan your shopping trip you have a list of what you need and what you may need to replace in your pantry. Also it prevents you from second guessing yourself in the store, “Do I need that? And then purchasing something you already had! A plan is a must for saving money this week. Take the time to list the items you need to buy and then stick to it!
By following these steps this week, you’ll be on your way to watching your savings grow!
Lynette Rice is author of CleverlySimple.com and BuehlersDeals.com. She doesn’t think saving money has to be complicated and shares her tips to help others keep it simple as they cleverly save. A stay at home mom to two growing boys, she uses her spare time to teach Savings Nation workshops to teach others how to save up to 50% off their grocery bill.