Friday, March 11, 2011

Nat’s Couponing Tips – Part Two

Today, we will continue our discussion on couponing. I hope yesterday’s post was helpful to some of you. I wanted to share with you some of the best ways to find coupons and also provide you some links to a few web sites that will help you in your quest to get more band for your buck.

The keys I use to finding coupons are as follows:

1. Buy a Sunday paper. The majority of coupons are going to be in the Sunday paper. I have a friend at work who I swap coupons with. I cut out what I want from my paper and give her what I don’t take and she does the same. I get The Huntsville Times weekend subscription which is $8 a month; I’m sure Sunday only is a little cheaper. It’s worth it to me just to get the coupons.
2. Look online – go to this site and also Red Plum, SmartSource, All You, Target as well as individual company web sites. If you see an item on sale search for a coupon.
3. Send an email to your favorite companies – It never hurts to compliment someone, even companies. I have written to companies telling them how awesome I think their products are and have received coupons for free items in return for sending a nice email.
4. Buy coupons on eBay – I have one seller that I buy from about once a month or so. She lives in Florida and often has great coupons that are not available to me. Her seller name is maumabear and her listing is usually for 100 Grocery only coupons.
5. Use a clipping service. There are a lot of clipping services out there that sell coupons for specific items. They usually cut them from the newspaper and sell them for a low price. I have never used one of these services but a lot of people do.
6. Look for coupons in the store – seasonal coupon booklets are often available as well as coupons that pull out of the blinkie machines and coupons that come from tear pads.
7. Trade with your friends and family.
8. Pick up coupons at food shows, cooking classes, and other events.
9. Take advantage of rebates. Whether it’s money back or coupon booklets from the company, rebates are a great way to aid in saving money.

As far as finding out about great deals, I am going to list the sites I follow regularly. Most of these sites I visit on a daily basis to see what kind of great deals they have uncovered. A lot of them I will visit multiple times throughout the day just to make sure I don’t miss any great deals that may quickly disappear.

The first group of sites are general money saving tip sites and have been extremely helpful to me.

Money Saving Madness – this site is devoted to all sorts of money saving tips. She posts about available coupons, sales, deal sites, etc.

Southern Savers – this is actually how I determine my grocery list for the week. She posts each of the stores sale items and coupon match-ups and you can make a printable list. It is the best site I’ve found as far as helping me at the grocery store. She also lists various specials and deals throughout the day. This is one of the most helpful sites I have found.

Birmingham Bargain Mom – this is primarily for Alabama readers as her deals primarily pertain to the Birmingham and Huntsville areas.

Simply CVS – I wasn’t much of a CVS shopper until I found this site. This site takes each week’s sale paper and will show you multiple options as to how to get a lot of items for little money using coupons, and CVS’ Extra Care Bucks.

Hey It’s Free – I love to get stuff in the mail. Hey It’s Free posts about all the free samples, magazine subscriptions, etc. that you can find out on the World Wide Web. I have gotten tons of free magazine subscriptions by following this site.

The second group of sites I want to share with you are sites that offer daily deals. These sites can really help you save money when dining out, out for a night on the town, etc.

Swagbucks – This isn’t really a daily deal site, but this is a search engine that you can use to earn “Swagbucks”. Swagbucks can then be spend in the swag store for all sorts of items from gift cards to video games. Last year around Christmas, I had saved enough Swagbucks to purchase $25 worth of Amazon gift cards which I used to buy a Christmas present or two. Basically I earned an Amazon gift card just for searching the internet. Money Saving Madness (mentioned above) often has a lot of Swagbuck tips throughout the day.

Groupon – Every day Groupon offers a deal of the day and you can sign up for email notices for your city (this is a great time to have one of those junk email accounts I mentioned yesterday. Some recent Groupon examples are $6 for $12 at Lawler’s BBQ, $15 for $30 of product at Bath and Body Works, $10 for $20 Barnes and Nobel Gift Card.

Living Social – Similar to Groupon, Living Social also offers discounts at local restaurants and venues. Recent examples are $12 for $25 at Another Broken Egg Café, $9 for two movie tickets purchased through Fandango, $24 for $60 ticket to the Huntsville Symphony, $10 for $20 Amazon gift card. P.S. If you sign up through this link you should receive a $5 credit.

*Side note – if you use Swagbucks, you can click on the “Daily Deals” tab on the left side of the page and the Groupon and Living Social deals will appear. If you purchase through the Swagbucks link, not only are you getting a great deal, but you will also earn various denominations of Swagbucks. For example, the deal for Another Broken Egg Café earned me 315 Swagbucks, just 135 short of a $5 Amazon gift card.

Baby Steals – If you are the mother of a little one or need to buy a baby shower gift, check out baby steals. They have a new deal every day starting at 10:00 a.m. Central time. These deals go quick so be sure to check it out early.

GroopDealz is a new deal site I’ve come across and it has a lot of handmade items for a discounted price. I haven’t bought anything from this site yet, but there have been some cute things listed here.

Ebates – This is an awesome way to earn some money. If you are like me then you probably buy a lot of items online. Ebates is a great way to earn money back on those purchases. All you do is sign up for an account, then each time you shop online go first to Ebates and then find the store you will be shopping at, click the link and it will take you to that store. When you make your purchase, a certain percentage will be added to your Ebates account and when you reach a certain amount, you can ash it in! How easy is that?
I think that’s all the information I have for you today. If you happen to sign up for any of the deal sites mentioned above, I would be most appreciative if you went through the link provided here in this post. I get credits for referring friends and after all, I am about maximizing my dollar, isn’t that what the whole point of this post was about?

Thanks for reading and I truly hope these tips were helpful and that you will soon be on your way to maximizing your own dollar and saving lots of money! Have a great weekend!!


Erika said...

I've gotten some great coupons by emailing websites. $1.00 a pound of TN pride sausage, $1.00 Dole bananas, $1.00 Village Naturals Products, etc.
Sometimes I have asked for coupons; other times I have simply sent an email complimenting a product. The coupons like this tend to be of higher value than those I find in the newspaper.
Also, I signed up for P&G Brand Saver (I think that's the name)and I get a coupon book for $1.00 coupons for things like Tide, Bounty, Charmin, etc.
Those are my tips!
Another great post, Natasha!

Melissa said...

Thanks for the second posting!! And, Erika...great deals from emailing those companies. I'm going to try that too. Our 2 year old wants a banana every time he looks on the counter where we keep them...little money is expensive to feed :)
I will browse those sites this weekend and see if we can start saving some $$$$!