Have you ever stepped out of a store having splurged more money than what you intended to spend? You’d be surprised to find out how often that happens, and that you are not alone. Here are a few handy tips that can help you shop smarter and save money at the tills.
- Forget about being picky with brands. There are plenty of commercial products out there that are just as good and just as effective as their more expensive branded counterparts. Brand loyalty can be a tough habit to break, but if you open your mind to trying lesser known products you can save a significant amount of money. For instance, both branded and non-branded paracetamol contain the same active ingredient, but the price difference between the two can be as high as £2.
- Speaking of foregoing brand biases, try expanding the idea and do the same for your family. A good way to save money is to try non-branded versions of products that you usually use at home, like paper towels or laundry detergent, and see if your family can tell the difference. You’d be surprised to see how much money you can save without compromising on quality.
- Take advantage of as many supermarket deals as you can get your hands on, but be smart about them. Discounts are a great way to save money, but they can also have the opposite effect. You might find yourself buying something that you don’t really need simply because you saw that it was on sale. Try shopping with a friend some time and go for those buy-one-take-one deals. That way, you end up buying products for half the price. Or, you can shop on your own and come home with twice as many items for the price of one. Either way, you’d still be shopping smarter.
- Smart shopping also means not falling for the many tricks that supermarkets and other commercial establishment employ to get you spending more money than you intended to when you first walked in. For instance, supermarkets display big money items right at eye level, making them seem more attractive. But if you can get past them and look at the lower shelves you will surely find a bargain.
- Avoid impulse buying at all cost. Those chocolates you see at the tills are the store’s efforts to get you to buy more at checkout. Try not to be tempted into making that last-minute purchase simply because you have a sweet tooth!
- To curb those impulse purchases, it also helps to follow the 24-hour rule. When you encounter something that you want to buy but is not included in your shopping list, the rule suggests that you skip on buying the item and wait for 24 hours instead. You should only buy the item if you decided 24 hours later that it’s really worth it.
- A shopping list can be helpful, as long as you can stick to the plan. Making a list of items that you intend to buy can help prevent unnecessary purchases. If you have a particular product on your list but can’t find it in the store, always look for a less expensive alternative. If possible, hold off on buying it until the store restocks so that you don’t end up spending more money unnecessarily.
Remember that supermarkets and other commercial establishments are not only there to provide you with access to products; they are also there to make money. It’s just business. Be smart about things the next time you shop and watch your savings grow. Don’t just fall for those special offers and loyalty rewards that cost a pretty penny. It might just be a smarter decision to shop somewhere else instead.