5 Easy Ways to Save Money on Groceries
According to Business Insider, the average household across major US cities spend from $314 a month in Atlanta to $516 a month in Seattle on groceries per month. However, that study seems to have been conducted pre-coronavirus times when children ate at school, and workers could save money by indulging in office lunches and other free meals.
It’s easy to blow your monthly budget on groceries if you’re not used to tracking your expenses and optimizing the way in which you shop to look for deals and discounts. And, while you can download a great cashback app for grocery shopping or even a price match app that’ll get you easy refunds on grocery store purchases, there are much easier ways to save.
Interested in saving more on your monthly grocery bill? Here are five easy-to-implement savings techniques you can start using today.
1. Use Cashback & Coupon Apps
Okay, so we mentioned that there are easier ways to save, sure. But, rebate apps for groceries are so easy to use nowadays that it simply doesn’t make sense not to include them in your arsenal of budget grocery shopping tools. These apps range from those that allow you to scan and submit receipts for rebates all the way to apps that will allow you to simply shop deals and coupons just by making purchases through the app itself. Ibotta, Checkout 51, and Receipt Hog are all great apps to check out. Find the one that works best or your lifestyle, spending habits, and schedule. Most of the time, they work best if they require you to do little or nothing. If you find these apps too difficult to keep track of then simply download a coupon app like the Coupons.com app that’ll provide you with lots of great deals for savings on groceries.
2. Get Help From a Budgeting Tool
Learning how to budget your income is one of the most helpful ways to save money in the long run. You can’t expect yourself to know how to save money on groceries if you don’t know how much you’re spending on them. Depending on your income, other expenses, and saving goals, you’ll want to look for a budgeting tool or budgeting app that caters to your lifestyle. If your goal is to save $100 a month on groceries, for example, try using a budgeting tool like YNAB that works off of a zero-based budgeting system. It forces you to justify and account for all of your expenses, which in turn forces you to be more deliberate about your spending, especially on groceries.
3. Plan Your Menus
Planning your menus is similar to budgeting in that it gives you a great snapshot of what you can expect to spend on groceries each week or month. Not only is this helpful nutritionally, with studies showing that meal planning can lead to a healthier diet and a lower risk of obesity, but it’s also helpful in budgeting for saving cash on groceries. Start by taking a look at the kinds of deals that your local grocery stores are offering on certain foods and produce. Then, plan a menu based on the cheapest options for food choices. When you go to the store, go with your meal plan in hand and only purchase the food on your list.
4. Buy in Bulk
Buying in bulk is beneficial for numerous reasons. First, it cuts down on plastic and packaging waste that ensures you’re shopping just a little bit greener. However, financially it also makes sense, especially if you’re shopping for a family of four or more. US News points out that you have to view these kinds of savings as long-term, however, mentioning that if you save ten cents on something you use daily, such as hand soap, supplements, or even staple food items, that's $36.50 in savings per year. Multiply that by however many products you’re buying and it adds up to big savings fast. If you don’t have a family large enough to make bulk buying worth it, try teaming up with a neighbor, friend, or another family member. Buy in bulk and split the goods and costs.
5. Pay in Cash
If apps are too hard for you to keep track of and budgeting still doesn’t seem to work when it comes time to cut some grocery expenses then try something even simpler. Pay in cash. Better yet, only take a set amount of cash with you to the store. It’s one of the easiest ways to avoid overspending, especially on smaller items such as groceries that seem to add up fast. If you’ve figured that you can only spend $200 a week on groceries and have a set shopping list of what you need to buy then you’ll do well with only taking $200 in cash with you to the store. Leave your cards at home and ensure that you’re not putting anything in your cart that will make your total go over your spending limit.
Earning Extra Cash for Groceries
You can download apps and budget for groceries all you want, but what about earning extra cash easy to put towards your grocery budget each month? Yes, it’s possible. And, you don’t even have to take up a side hustle to make it work.
Our FDIC-insured 100% free Cheese Debit Card can earn you a lot by cashback and saving bonus. Saving money doesn’t get easier than that, which means you’ll have lots of extra cash left over to work with when you’re budgeting for groceries and other everyday expenses. Interested in learning more? Sign up today.