Groceries expenses cannot be avoided because everyone needs to eat. Depending on the size of your household, it can be a significant expense. However, there are things that you can do to reduce your grocery expenses without sacrificing what you like to eat. Here are some tips on how to save on groceries and be a smart shopper.
A lot of grocery chains offer loyalty programs to their customers. If you tend to shop at the same supermarket a lot and such a program is offered, make sure that you sign up for it. You can get reduced pricing on items that are featured for the week or other incentives. Just remember to take your membership card with you each time you shop to get the discounts.
Manufacturers love to entice customers to buy their products by sending out coupons. Take advantage of these and start a routine of clipping coupons for items that you usually buy. Many coupons are now offered digitally so that you can save them on your mobile device and just present them to the grocery clerk for him to scan. Also, some supermarket loyalty programs incorporate manufacturers’ coupons in their offerings. So, when you use a product coupon during a week when the supermarket is having a sale on the items, you will save even more at the cash register.
Plan your meals ahead so you will know exactly what grocery items you will need on your next trip to the market. When you purchase, stick to those items. Grocery shoppers often have a tendency to buy something on impulse if they see an attractive display of the featured products of the week. If the products on sale are not what you would normally buy, avoid them. By sticking to only what you had intended to buy, you will avoid spending extra money on impulse buys that you may regret later.
Buy produce when they are in season. This is when they are the most abundant. Grocers want to move seasonal produce quickly, so they tend to offer big discounts on them. When you buy produce out of season, you end up paying top dollar for it.
Avoid shopping for groceries when you are hungry. Your hunger makes everything in the store look appetizing, and you may end up buying more than what you need or something that you don’t really need. People have a natural emotional response to food, so always shop with a clear, logical purpose in mind.
Most supermarkets offer house brands that are priced lower than name brand products. You should not automatically assume that house brands are lower in quality because sometimes there is very little or no difference. Try house brands or generic brands at least once for each type of grocery items. Make a list of the house brand products that pass your quality test and you can save a lot of money next time you shop.
These are just a few examples on how to save on groceries that you can start to apply to your next shopping trip. When you think about how often you go to buy groceries, these dollar savings from each trip will add up to a significant amount over the year.