Using coupons is awesome. Unfortunately it will become more difficult and not so awesome if it is abused. It is up to each of us to do our best to give couponers a good name.
Stockpile, Don’t Hoard:
- Stockpiling is evaluating your families needs, the shelf life of the product, and the number of coupons you have. Then you get the amount of product your family will need to last until the next good sale or expiration date of your product.
- Hoarding is clearing the shelf just because the product is cheap and you have a lot of coupons.
You can easily get a large amount of product without clearing the shelves. Just put in an order. Most managers are more than happy to do this for you.
Just a note on clearing the shelf: It is very frustrating for the next 50 people who come in after carefully planning their shopping just to find empty shelves. It is annoying for store staff who get complaints from those 50 or more shoppers. It leaves a frustrated manager who could have ordered enough for the large orders and the rest of the customers with a little pre-ordering! 🙂 Please don’t be like the crazy diaper lady. Couponing can be like a craze sometimes, but you can’t let yourself get carried away. If you have not read my crazy diaper lady story before you should. We can all learn a lot from this story.
Take a few, don’t take them all
- You can find coupons in your stores. Look for blinkies in the aisle. Some stores are providing their extra newspaper insert coupons for their customers. Take a few if you think it is a coupon you will use before it expires. Do not take a handful or stack.
- If you find peelies on products, do not remove them from the product unless you are going to buy the product on that trip.
- If you need lots of coupons, order on Ebay! (Cathy has great tutorial for buying coupons on ebay. Check it out!)
- A few weeks ago after teaching a class we were shopping in a Meridian store on the last night of double coupons. I found these two Baby Ray’s coupons. Baby Ray’s is my favorite. Ya I am a BBQ sauce snob! I only got one insert the previous time these were on sale and was only able to get two bottles. So I was super excited to get a few more bottles. Thanks to the mystery person who left them here. We were each able to get a couple of FREE bottles!
I try to do this. When I have good coupons that are expiring soon or I don’t need anymore of the product I leave coupons by the products so someone else can save some money too! Of course don’t leave them if they are expired. That is litter. There is no value in that.
You can also share with co-workers, friend and neighbors
- In our break room at work we have an envelope for coupons we will not use for others to look through and take ones that they might like.
- I save my pet food coupons for my friends with pets.
- Trade Coupons in our BlogFrog Community!
Be honest with your coupons
- Carefully read your coupons, and follow what they say. If it says $1 off 2 be sure to buy 2. If it says only on sensitive toothpaste, don’t try to get regular toothpaste.
- Be organized with coupons for each transaction before you get in line. If you are not organized it will slow things down or mess things up at check out. Help the cashier do their job in the most efficient way possible. They are not getting paid per customer, but they are grumpy if they have people mad at them for having a slow line and having to wait.
Be sweet to your cashier
- Make them look forward to couponers coming through their line, not dread it. Sometimes the reason you get a grumpy cashier is because the couponer 20 minutes ago held up her line for 30 minutes and yelled at her for not doubling a $1.50 coupon. If we help each other out by being good couponers we will all look forward to more pleasant shopping trips.
Let other’s go in front of you
- Have you ever been shopping and not wanted to look back to see the daggers shooting at you from the person in line behind you?
- If you are doing multiple transactions and there is someone in line behind you with only a few items offer to let them go ahead of you or between your transactions.
Give people in line a smile and a warning:
- Obviously you can not let every person in line in front of you every time. So give them a sweet smile and let them know that you have a coupon for every item in your cart so it may take a few extra minutes. They are then prepared to wait a few or choose another line.
- Many people don’t realize that it is a matter of saving 50-95% not just a few pennies.
Never do more than 3 transactions in a row
- Many stores do not allow you to more than 3 transactions in a row anymore. If you keep it to three or less it will be easier for you to keep your items and coupons separated properly, and keep you from holding up the line. Then you can go get more goodies and get back in line.
- It is not fun to be the person in line behind someone that is majorly holding up the line, or the cashier who has to help that person.
If we each try to give couponers a good name then we will have more good experiences when shopping at the store. What goes around comes around. Let’s try to set a high standard for couponing and not abuse it, so it will be around to enjoy and save us money for many more years to come.
What do you do to give couponers a good name?