Friday, November 13, 2009

How to Build a Good Coupon Supply


I am writing this for those of you who are new to coupon shopping, which if you aren't aware is "the new in thing!"  Coupons have become a very valuable commodity to me.  I treat them like cash, because using them is like putting cash in the bank!  Building your coupon supply takes a little time, but in a few months you will have as many as the seasoned coupon clipping pros.  I've only been at it a short time, and am very happy with my stash.  I want to share with you how I've done it.

  1. Start with the Sunday paper.  There are usually two inserts: Red Plum and Smart Source.  Occasionally Proctor & Gamble and General Mills will include an insert.  I subscribe to two papers in my area, The Seattle Times and The Everett Herald.  Unfortunately the Seattle paper does not carry the Red Plum insert, so as soon as my subscription runs out I am cancelling it and getting two subscriptions to The Everett Paper.  When coupons are really good I will buy extra papers.  This ensures having enough coupons to use stocking up on items when they are really cheap.  For example, I used two "buy one get one free" coupons at Rite Aid yesterday to get four free Herbal Essence Products because the store was also having a "buy one get one free" sale on these products.  That easily paid for the cost of two papers for those coupons alone.  The Herald also has a deal going that allows you to get a subscription for $1 a week for 26 weeks, making it 50¢ cheaper than at the news stands.  Always check with your local paper for the best deals before subscribing.
  2. Get coupons off of the internet.  There are several great sites, including RedPlum.com, SmartSource.com, Coupons.com, BettyCrocker.com, SimpleAndDelicious.com, and Save-A-Lot.   Coupons available often change month to month, but this is variable.  When I first found these sites I was printing coupons like crazy.  Then I realized how much costly ink and paper I was using and how few of these coupons I was actually utilizing.  Now I print only high value coupons and coupons I know I will use.  If I need more, I go back later and print them.
  3. There is another coupon site on the web called "Bricks" at Coupons Inc.  You can print coupons directly from the manufacturers.  What is available and how long varies.  This is one of the best places to find great, high value coupons!
  4. All You Magazine, a monthly periodical sold only at Wal-Mart stores, is a good source for coupons.  Subscribing to the magazine is the most cost effective way to get it, and you can sometimes find discount subscriptions at Amazon.com.  Always look in all your other magazines too.  I have found coupons in Good Housekeeping, Family Circle, and Shape, to name a few.
  5. I always grab coupons from "Blinkie Machines" in the store isle.  Even if I don't need them right then, I file them away for later use, just in case.
  6. Look for "Peelies," coupons attached to the products you are buying.  Sometimes they are worth less than other manufacturer coupons you may already plan to use, so stash them away for later.  (You usually can't use more than one manufacturer coupon per transaction.)
  7. Sign up for product newsletters.  You often get coupons emailed to you this way.  I do suggest using a junk email for this, so your personal email doesn't get clogged up.  Some newsletters to try are Right At Home from SC Johnson that has great Glade coupons and  Nestle.comMambo Sprouts and Organic Valley Family of Farms are also good if you like natural and organic products.
  8. Join Vocalpoint, a program offered by Proctor & Gamble  that offers many fabulous samples and high value coupons.  You must fill out a questionaire and be accepted, because this is a "word of mouth program."  (Hint: the more people you talk to on a regular basis the more likely you are to be choosen.)  I recently received multiple $3.00 and $1.50 coupons for Kashi cereal and a $50+ jar of Olay Pro-X!
  9. Take a look inside packages and on boxes before tossing them in the garbage or in the recycling.  I have found some good coupons for example on cereal and granola bar boxes, and inside product packaging. 
  10. If you have a little one in diapers, join all the diaper networks.  I have received great coupons from all three major brands.  To find out more information and for links go HERE.
  11. For those who don't want to hassle with paper coupons, you may want to try paperless eCoupons.  You can check out my post all about them  HERE.
Hope this helps any of you who are new to couponing with building your coupon supply!  For ideas on how to organize all those coupons, I like Money Saving Mom's method  HERE.  It is the organizational tool I use and it has worked well for me so far. 

If you have any other ideas on accumulating coupons, please leave me a comment!

1 comment:

maygan said...

Really great post!

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