1. DON’T be brand loyal…try new products and be open to purchase products you wouldn’t normally use.
2. Stockpile— which basically means if you’re getting a product at a rock bottom price STOCK UP! Great things to stockpile are canned goods, cleaning products, toothpaste, paper goods… and pretty much anything with a long expiration date.
3. Buy at least a few Sunday newspapers. You will start building up a nice stash of coupons and that way when a good deal comes along you can stock up (this will help with rule #2)!
4. Buy the smallest size possible that the coupon will allow. For example, if you have a $1/1 Charmin coupon (with No size restriction), buy the smallest size–which is usually the 4 pack. Why? Well, sometimes the 4 packs go on sale for $1, so FREE after the coupon! AND, if you have a few coupons, then you can STOCK UP and get a couple 4 packs for FREE! I did this previously with Old spice body wash coupons. I had four $2/2 body wash coupons. The coupons didn’t exclude the travel size (which some coupons do), so I went to Walmart and bought 8 travel size old Spice body washes that would have cost me $1 a piece for FREE!
5. Always check manufacturer product boxes before throwing them away. A lot of times there are different rebates going on or other promotion where you might need the UPS. Also some products have coupons on them as well…sometimes hidden inside the box. I cut out the UPC’s from my Colgate toothpastes purchased previously (which were FREE by the way) and sent them in to get FREE Sponge Bob automatic toothbrushes for my kiddos!
6. Coupon organization is key when it comes to finding unadvertised clearance deals. There are several coupon organization options, but my favorite by far is the binder method. Basically I have a binder with dividers and baseball card inserts for coupons. I use dividers for different categories such as dairy, snack foods, canned goods, personal care, cleaning supplies ect. The baseball card inserts are great because you can see all your coupons laid out in front of you! I talked more about this method in my Coupon Organization Follow Me Monday video!
7. Sometimes you have to buy products you don’t need to get products you do. Now this rule might seem like a hard one to understand. Here is an example: Lets say Walgreens has a Register Reward promotion going on–Buy 10 Gillette shaving products, earn a $5 Register Reward. The least expensive Gillette Shaving Gel products are $2. Buy 10 for a total of $20. Plus, Walgreens has $1/1 coupon and there are also $1/1 manufacturer coupons, so if you stack these together you can get 10 Shaving Gels for FREE + score a $5 Register Reward to use on your next purchase! You can buy Diapers, newspapers or any other items you may need with that Register Reward! So the point is, you may walk out of Walgreens with 10 FREE shaving Gels you don’t need, but $5 worth of products (from the $5 Register Reward) that you do need!
8. Make couponing work for you. I clip and sort through expired coupons while watching TV or movies at night. I like it because it keeps my hands busy! You can also have your kiddos help with organizing coupons. My kids enjoy sorting the coupons into the right categories and putting them inside the inserts. There are lots of ways to make couponing clipping more enjoyable! I think the main thing is to get your family involved and make it a fun activity!
9. Bring cash when you shop! I don’t know about you, but when I slide a credit card at the store it’s well, so easy! Makes me want to keep on spending! BUT, when I have to actually take dollar bills out of my wallet… well, it’s not so easy and definitely makes me think twice about what I’m purchasing!
10. Coupon overage is Great. It lets you get other products you want and don’t have a coupon for at a better price. Example: I buy the travel size clean & clear at Kmart for $1, but have a $2/1 coupon (that doesn’t exclude travel size)…so the additional $1 goes towards other products I’m purchasing. This also is another reason for rule #7.