Are your shopping habits saving you money? If not, it’s time to learn some tricks on how to become a more frugal shopper!
Stick to a list. It sounds incredibly obvious but you’d be surprised how many people go shopping without making a list first. As well as increasing the chances that you’ll let your guard slip and pick up things that you don’t really need, not having a list usually means that there’s less structure to your shopping trip and you’ll probably find yourself wandering around from aisle to aisle with no definite purpose. Generally speaking, the longer you spend in a particular shop, the more likely you are to overspend so having a list can be crucial in terms of avoiding this. Even if you’re a very organized person, it’s all too easy to forget something important and need to make a return trip, which again increases your chances are buying more than you planned.
Pay in cash. Paying in cash and physically parting with money for your purchases means that you’re more likely to stop and think before you buy things compared to simply handing over a credit or debit card. Many people think nothing of buying something on a whim because they want it but by going to an ATM, withdrawing cash and seeing the amount of cash that you’re about to spend can go a long way towards making you question whether it’s really needed or whether it’s just an impulse buy.
Compare prices. Never make a purchase without shopping around to see where you can get the best price. There can be huge variations in price between different shops and it’s often not until you come to research prices that you appreciate just how much discrepancy there can be. Take a good look at price comparison websites to get a handle on prices and you might be surprised at how much you can save by changing where you shop.
Let the deals come to you. If you follow retailers and businesses on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter or sign up to receive emails from them, it can be much easier to keep track of the latest deals without having to continuously check their websites to see what’s new.
Don’t shop in a rush. If you’re pushed for time while shopping, you’re more likely to pick up one of the first things that you come across, rather than spend time weighing up your options. Just look at what happens on Black Friday.
Buying in bulk isn’t always best. Many people assume that they’re getting a better idea by buying in bulk but this isn’t always true, especially for perishable food items that are likely to be thrown away if you don’t get a chance to use everything before the use-by date.
Don’t shop hungry. Shopping on an empty stomach can put a sizeable dent in your good intentions. You’ll probably find yourself reaching for food even if you’re not actually food shopping and your plans to be frugal can go straight out of the window.
Don’t be too cheap. No matter how keen you are to cut costs, going bargain basement isn’t always the best thing to do. Quality that lasts more than five minutes is often worth paying more for as you won’t need to replace it as quickly, whereas a cheap item that is going to break down on an alarming basis can ultimately cost you more than buying a better quality item in the first place.
As you can see, you don’t always have to be overly creative to be a frugal shopper – a lot of it is merely common sense tips that many people ignore. It may take a bit more effort but the savings can be well worth it!
So, are you a frugal shopper? How have you saved money on purchases?