Everything you need to know about couponing in 2017
If you love bargains and enjoy the idea of saving money, then couponing could be just what you need. Coupons are by far the easiest and quickest way to curtail your grocery spending. By dedicating time to finding and clipping coupons, an average family can save upwards of $1000 each year simply by couponing. Now, before getting started, you must understand that couponing takes time and a lot of gumption. However, when effectively done, it can and will save you money in the long run.
The first coupon was issued in 1886 by the Coca-Cola Company; however, the use of coupons became more popular in the Great Depression, at a time when families needed them the most. In the 1940s grocery store owners began issuing them as a way of attracting more customers. Since then, their use has become so prevalent that couponing has become the basis of popular reality shows such as Extreme Couponing and Thrifty Shoppers. As such, it is evident that couponing is here to stay and will most likely still remain a primary element of any store owner’s marketing efforts. As a consumer, it would be unwise not to take advantage of such opportunities as you stand to benefit financially from such a trend.
Which type of couponer are you?
This type of couponer dabbles here and there in coupon use but not on a consistent basis. This couponer does not make a huge effort to find and use coupons, however, every now and then; such an individual will use any available coupons.
The incidental couponer
This individual goes out of their way to find coupons for specific types of goods and services, which are typically on the expensive side.
The budget seeking couponer
This type of couponer relies heavily on couponing to purchase groceries on a regular basis. The budget seeker uses coupons as a way to stretch a dollar and support their day to day shopping.
The extreme couponer
Extreme couponers enjoy the process of couponing not just for the money it allows them to save, but also for the pleasure and the joy it gives them. To extreme couponers, couponing is kind of a hobby that is beneficial and fun at the same time.
Are couponers poor?
There is a common misconception that couponers are poor, which explains why some people are embarrassed to use coupons, even if they need them. Today, couponing has become the norm, therefore, there is no reason to become anxious about the thought of embarrassing yourself or holding up the checkout line. Think of it this way; why pay full price for a product while you can get that same product at a discounted coupon price? If you are afraid of holding up the checkout line, worry not because the introduction of digital coupons as all but abolished the use of those pesky coupons that hold the lineup.
Before getting started, you should start by looking at your selection of goods and items to determine the products that you use most frequently and which would benefit most from discounted prices. Common household products that often have coupons attached to them include baby products, cleaning supplies, toiletries, packaged foods, and pet supplies.
Where to find coupons:
- Inside your local newspaper
- In your mail
- At the checkout registers
- Online grocery coupons
- The manufacturer’s website and Facebook page
- Printable coupon websites such as com, coupons.com, and redplum.com.
Here are some valuable tips to help you get started:
If you are new to the whole process, it can seem daunting and disheartening. To avoid feeling this way, you should start slow particularly in the beginning stages.
Set practical saving objectives
Do not expect to save huge amounts of money at the very beginning of the process. Instead of concentrating on making overall savings, start by identifying specific items that you can save money on. The do not have to be big ticket items, but it will allow you to familiarize yourself with the techniques and strategies involved in couponing.
Review your store’s couponing policy
If you intend to save money by couponing, you need to learn about your store’s couponing policy as it varies from one store to another. If you live in an area with more than one grocery store, then you enjoy the pleasure of selecting the store that has the most favorable policies.
Look for coupons around you
As you shop, try to keep an eye out on products that have coupon stickers, often known as peelies, on them. These peelies are placed there to reward customers.
Track how much you save weekly
As soon as you start couponing, it might help to keep you motivated if you track your actual savings each week. A basic spreadsheet and limited math knowledge are necessary if you are to track your savings correctly.
To get the most out of the process, you should work on becoming more educated on the practice of couponing, which will allow you to build your coupon IQ. The more coupons you collect, the more there is to learn, which will help you avoid the numerous pitfalls of couponing.