In today’s economy, it is more important than ever to save money on groceries. The cost of food continues to rise, and it’s difficult to make ends meet. However, with a little planning and some creative shopping strategies, you can easily reduce your grocery bill by 20-50% or more. In this article, we will discuss 10 different ways that you can save money on groceries. Let’s get started!
Use a list and stick to it. This may seem like an obvious one, but it’s worth mentioning. Make sure you have a list of everything you need before you go to the grocery store. This will help you avoid impulse purchases, which can add up quickly.
- OUT OF STORE SHOPPING
Another great way to avoid impulse purchases is to use grocery pickup or delivery. There are usually some fees associated with this, but for many people, this is offset by avoiding impulse buys.
You can also purchase groceries online. Online groceries can offer significant savings on many things, and often offer coupons. Staying out of the store when possible will help you avoid the temptation of buying things you don’t really need–potentially saving you a significant amount of money.
- FIND THE BEST DEALS
Comparison shop at different stores. Not all stores are created equal. Some stores will have better prices than others, so it’s important to do your research. Most grocery stores have an online presence, so comparing prices before you shop is easy. Once you know the best place for each item, create lists for each store. One word of warning: If the amount of savings is very minor, consider whether your cost in time and gas is worth the second trip. It may not be worth driving 10 miles to save 3 cents on a few different items.
One of the oldest and most familiar ways to save money on groceries is to use coupons. You can find coupons for the things you buy in a variety of places, including SelectAware.com, the Sunday paper, online, and in store flyers. Be sure to take advantage of all the coupons you can find, and you’ll be surprised at how much money you can save.
- LOYALTY & REWARDS
Does your favorite store (or stores) have a loyalty or rewards program?. Many stores offer these. For every dollar you spend, you earn points. These points can be redeemed for coupons, discounts, and free merchandise. Be sure to watch for specials, like members-only discounts or double points opportunities. Points may be added by swiping or scanning a card or using an app.
- SALES AND CLEARANCE ITEMS
Most stores have some type of sale or clearance section where you can find deeply discounted items. By paying attention to these sections, you can score some great deals on food and other household items.
- WHOLESALE CLUBS
Join a wholesale club. Wholesale clubs like BJs, Costco and Sam’s Club offer great deals on groceries and other household items. Besides saving by purchasing larger sizes or in bulk, you can often find coupons and discounts in store or on the apps of these clubs, saving you even more. Membership fees are typically very reasonable, and you’ll more than make up for it in the savings you’ll enjoy.
- STORE & GENERIC BRANDS
It is worth your while to check out store branded and generic items at your grocery store. You may be surprised at the quality and savings. Many times store brands are manufactured by the same company as the name brand product.
- REBATES & REWARDS CREDIT CARDS
There are a few different rebate apps that give you cash back for your grocery purchases. Ibotta is one of the most popular ones. All you have to do is select the items you purchased and then take a photo of your receipt. Once you reach $20, you can cash out through PayPal or Venmo. Another option is Fetch Rewards. With this app, you just scan your grocery receipts and earn points. You can then redeem those points for gift cards to your favorite stores. Rakuten is another rebate app that gives you cash back for online grocery shopping. You can also use coupons and promo codes with Rakuten to save even more money.
Rewards credit cards can be used for your groceries; each purchase adding to the cash back or miles or a vacation-whatever reward you’ve signed up for. There are also grocery specific rewards cards that give up to 6% cash back. Just take care to pay your balance every month or you’ll find your savings being dwarfed by interest payments.
- AVOID PRE-PACKAGED/CONVENIENCE FOODS
It’s no secret that pre-packaged convenience foods are, well, convenient. They can save some time in the kitchen, but often, you buy that time by spending more money. Always check the unit price (per pound, per ounce, each, etc.) to know if pre-shredded cheese, cut-for-you vegetables, or other convenience foods are worth the time they save.
- MENU PLANNING
One way to save money on groceries is to plan your meals. This can help you avoid buying things you don’t need and wasting food. When you plan your meals in advance, for a week or two or a month, you’ll know exactly what you need to buy. You’ll also be able to plan leftovers or double and then freeze some items, allowing you to cook once and eat twice! You can use a simple planner to plan your menus day-by-day.
Weekly meal planning can also help you take advantage of sales and coupons. Once a week, look through sales flyers from your favorite grocery stores and create your menu from there. If chicken breasts are on sale, you may want to serve chicken several times. Just be sure to choose a variety of recipes to keep it fresh. Planning your menu ahead not only saves you money, but has the added bonus of avoiding one of the most dreaded questions of all: What’s for dinner?
So there you have it! 10 (11!) different ways that you can save money on groceries. As you can see, there are a variety of ways to save money on groceries. With SelectAware.com, you can find coupons, deals, and discounts to save you money on most of the things you buy. So start saving today!