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For every person who coupons and consistently saves hundreds off their grocery bill, there is someone else who tries and fails miserably.
If you have wondered why couponing doesn’t work for you, here are five mistakes you might be making.
You have the wrong coupon role models
If Extreme Couponing is where you get your inspiration, you’re on the fast track to disappointment.
The couponers on TV get there because they are crazy, wild…not normal! Yes, you can try to coupon like that but then you end up with a pantry full of Powerade and little else. Then, after a couple weeks of putting in full-time hours clipping and sorting coupons, you get burned out and wonder if that’s all there is to it.
Rather than follow the extreme couponers, find someone local or head to the SavingsAngel Angel Forum to connect with a real couponer. One who can show you how to save money while filling your cupboards with the types of food you need to make well-rounded, nutritious meals for your family.
You’re chasing every deal
Couponing websites and blogs can be dangerous because once a great deal gets posted, it seems like everyone wants to get in on the action.
That’s fine if the deal is at your local, regular store. However, if you find yourself driving and extra 30 minutes because you get caught up in the rush of getting the great deal everyone’s talking about, then you are setting yourself up for failure.
Chasing deals is never a wise move. Real couponers don’t buy items simply because they are a deal. They buy items because they are a good deal FOR THEM. Focus on what you and your family will use to make couponing more enjoyable and keep you from hitting coupon burnout.
You don’t know your store policies
Nothing is more frustrating than reaching the register and having none of the deals you planned ring up right. It’s enough to make you want to throw up your hands and yell uncle.
Rather than giving up couponing, take the time to find your store’s coupon policies in advance. You can ask at the customer service desk, or we have the policies for major chains published in the SavingsAngel.com knowledgebase.
You aren’t looking at the big picture
Using coupons is actually only one small part of the overall process of couponing.
You also need to be regularly rotating your pantry inventory and meal planning from it. I regularly see new couponers make the mistake of buying and buying and buying but never using. Your pantry isn’t saving you any money if you aren’t eating from it.
Once you have a pantry well-stocked with staples, you should be able to dramatically reduce your weekly shopping bill and buy only the very best deals at your local store. If you are couple months into your couponing and are still spending the same amount on your grocery bill, you need to step back and reevaluate your approach. You may need to focus on buying different items or you could need to brush up on your menu planning.
You aren’t organized
Finally, many people fail at couponing because they aren’t organized. They don’t have a good system for storing their coupons or matching the coupons to the sales.
Personally, I advise new couponers to skip clipping all their coupons. In addition, don’t print coupons – unless they are high value or available in limited quantities – until you need them. This reduces your paper clutter.
Then, use a matching service such as our Enlightened Shopping section of SavingsAngel.com to make it easy to find which coupons you need to save the most money at the grocery store each week.
The best couponers save hundreds of dollars every month at the grocery store. However, extreme couponers can end up living very extreme lifestyles to get those savings. For over five years, SavingsAngel.com has equalized the playing field – giving extreme savings to busy families who don’t have the time or ability to be an extreme couponer. Each week, SavingsAngel.com’s over 70 angels combine over 2,000 products on sale at local grocery and drug stores with an enormous database of over 2000 different manufacturer coupons. These combinations result in our members getting access to over 300 products each week for 50% off or better. Simply log in, choose the deals you want, print or clip only the coupons you need, and save hundreds of dollars a month at regional and national stores. Our angels will personally work with you to craft a plan that will help you buy healthier food at lower prices – helping you keep $200 to $400 in savings each month.
Josh Elledge is the Chief Executive “Angel” of SavingsAngel, Inc. – launched from his home in January 2007. A husband and father of three, he now appears each week on television, in eight newspapers, and a number of radio stations across the country teaching families how to cut their grocery bill in half using the Internet. Elledge created the technology found on SavingsAngel.com through the need to save his own family’s money. Successfully able to cut his own grocery bill from $600 a month to less than $300 a month, his message has reached hundreds of thousands of families. SavingsAngel.com is now growing rapidly throughout the country. You can watch a short video at SavingsAngel.com that will explain more information about how to cut your own grocery bill in half with the help of SavingsAngel.com!