Spending more than what you intend in a supermarket is a predicament that we all fall victim to but it is not entirely your fault. Retailers can be very sneaky by altering the size of shopping carts (aren’t they always over sized?) giving out free samples etc. which are all designed to subtly entice you to make more purchases. This has led even sneakier shoppers to come up with a list of preventative methods that work well to help you save your hard earned cash, they are as follows.
Making a List
If you shop more than once a week you’re doing it for leisure and not out of necessity. Perhaps the best way to save money when visiting the supermarket is to plan your meals for the week before hand then make a list and purchase only what you have written down. This will take care of your perishables while the rest of your shopping for personal and household cleanliness can be bought by conducting two major shops in a month, again following a pre-formed list.
Cash over Cards
Forget about debit and credit cards, this a recipe for disaster. The more money you have on you the more tempted you will be to spend it so leave your cards at home and carry only enough cash to buy all the items on your list. This has been proven to help shoppers cut back on their expenditure by 25%.
Quick and Efficient
Studies have shown that people who carry lists and make their purchases in 30 minutes or less are 82% less likely to make impulsive purchases. You should go in and get out as fast as possible, if you linger you end up spending more.
Beware the Inner Aisles
The very construction of a supermarket is designed to get you to buy more; retailers usually place the most essential items at opposite ends for instance, dairy products will be as far away from the vegetables as possible. The purpose of this is to get you to pass a number of aisles containing items you wouldn’t normally purchase in the hope that you will pick up something you don’t need. Do not fall for this ploy, try to avoid the center of the store and keep only the essentials in mind.
Supermarket vs. the Pharmacy
Toiletries are better saved as a purchase for the pharmacy as opposed to the supermarket because they are cheaper there.
Brands don’t Matter
As a consumer you have probably fallen into the “brand trap”, most often branded items are more expensive not because the quality of food is better but because of the money spent on fancy advertising. If you look at the ingredients and weight rather than the packaging you will find that the generic produce is the same as major brands so purchase these instead.
The Pre-Cut Fetish
Do not fall for the pre-cut, pre-made foods in supermarkets, they are more expensive and designed just to attract consumers who are too lazy to cut and prepare their own food. If you want to save money you have to learn to do things yourself.
Aside from the tips mentioned above you could try to shop child free, kids have a tendency to grab all sorts of things and as a loving doting parent you won’t be able to deny them. Also look beyond the middle shelves; tricky retailers place the most expensive items at eye level while the cheaper versions which are just as good are placed either too high or too low.
Finally please do not shop when hungry, that is when you are at your weakest making you more likely to splurge on chocolates, chips and drinks, always remember to eat before you shop so your mind and not your stomach does the thinking for you. If you follow these tips every month you can save heaps on groceries setting it aside for a rainy day instead.