Strategy #3 – Buy The Smallest Item
This is one of my favorite extreme couponing tips. I remember before using coupons that I always bought in bulk, I figured I was saving money by getting more at once. While that might be a good method if you’re not using coupons, this is actually sometimes not the case when it comes to couponing.
Most Extreme Couponers Buy the Smallest Item a Coupon is Valid on. Then you buy multiples of this item to meet your families needs.
By purchasing the smallest item, not the largest and using your coupon you’re going to frequently get a Larger % of savings per unit.
I always recommend comparing items based on Unit Prices, for example it’s easier to compare the difference in costs when you break things down into ounces, per item, etc.
If you’re comparing the cost of Fruit Snacks and there are 10 in a small box for $2 and your coupon is for $1/2, you’ll pay $1.50 for 10 pouches or just $0.15 each after your coupon.
The larger box may have 24 pouches for $4.58, Using the same $1/2 Coupon you would end up paying $0.17 per unit. In a situation like this the smaller boxes are a better deal because the coupon actually is a bigger % of the overall price.
Other things to keep in mind is that you can often find, 10 for $10 Sales, or Buy 10 save $5 on smaller items. Target Gift Card Deals are also frequently on smaller products. For example this week there was a $2 sale on Eggo Waffles, when you buy 5 you get a $5 Target Gift Card making each box just $1. Or just $0.10 per Waffle.
Walmart sells the larger boxes of 24 ct. Eggo Waffles for $3.97, That works out to just $0.165 per Waffle, Since this deal doesn’t require coupons it’s easy to assume you could save more by buying the larger box, Which at the regular prices the larger box is slightly cheaper, If you’re willing to watch the sales and stock up on multiple boxes at the Target Sale the smaller boxes are actually cheaper.
Remember, the smaller item isn’t always the cheapest, but during sales and when using coupons it often works out to a better deal because a $1 Savings on a $2 item is a bigger percentage than a $1 savings on a $5 item. So remember that Bulk isn’t always the answer and while shopping at Warehouse stores for items you can’t find coupons on, or items that you are very specific on might be a great way to save, it’s often not the best deal on items where you can find great high value coupons.
You can Download the Stockpiling Price Sheet to see all of the estimated prices you could expect to pay for the basic items we buy each month. There is also a place to compare unit pricing. This is just a guide, but a great way to help you learn the prices of each item.
Tomorrow we will be talking about another strategy for getting the most out of your coupons!
View all the posts in the Extreme Couponing Strategies series.