1. Get paid to shop
Cashback websites like TopCashback or Quidco will offer you money to shop through them online. The sites are free and safe to use – and if you’re a new member, you really can reap the rewards.
They operate through referrals. If you visit a store and make a payment through one of their websites, the retailer will pay them as a reward, and subsequently, they’ll pay you a cut of that payment.
It’s easy to sign up to – all you have to do is enter basic details to create an account. Once you’re in, you’ll be able to start shopping – avoid logging out of your account as the website will need to track your payment.
2. Ask for vouchers
If there is a special offer in a supermarket but the item is out of stock, you can ask in store customer services for a voucher offering you either a similar product at the same price, or a coupon to take advantage of the offer at a later date when it’s back in stock.
This is not something you are entitled to, however, ask nicely, and in most cases, you won’t be refused.
3. Buy reduced items
As products approach their expiry date, supermarkets will start to stash costs in a bid to recoup as much as they can before the item is taken off the shelf. This is great news for the consumer, as it means you’ll be able to snap up groceries for a fraction of the costs – we’ve spotted bread down to 10p in the past.
This is easier said than done though. Each store will have its reduced hour – a period of the day in which they’ll scour the shelves for products approaching shelf life and reduce the cost – usually around 5-7pm – and many shoppers will know about it, so prepare to be quick.
Remember, if items are close to their sell by date, you can just put them in the freezer for later use.
4. Buy own brand basics
There are certain cupboard items that just don’t taste the same as own brand, like Heinz baked beans for instance. But, on the other hand, there are many basics that you CAN switch to and make a saving without even noticing the difference.
These include kitchen roll, salt, sugar, chopped tomatoes and most cleaning or household products.
5. Use loyalty rewards
Loyalty schemes are designed to reward regular customers and keep them coming back for more. This is often achieved through exclusive deals, discount codes, coupons and cash off once you’ve accumulated a certain amount. Don’t be too loyal though – as you’ll end up missing out on deals elsewhere.
You can collect points when you buy in-store, which you can use as a discount on your next purchase. Note, loyalty schemes are not a substitute for a good deal and will not save you money if you go back to the store without shopping around first.
6. Don’t be fooled by discounts
As tempting as these may look, not all ‘bargains’ are as good as they seem. Look closer, and you’ll spot deals like ‘2 for £2’ on items that cost just 95p each. Don’t be fooled by such trickery – always do your maths.