Since I began using Google Alerts to help me locate sale items I wanted I have located many bargains that satisfy my frugal soul and please my practical minded husband as well. Recently I discovered that the free service will also help me find great coupons and store rewards as well. Google Alerts sends me an email each day that is loaded with all of the latest “deals” in couponing. I can then go to the web site and print out however many I choose and will use. Sometimes it leads you to online sites like couponloco.com to get online coupons. For printables, you do have to check the expiration dates because some of them are short term only and may be unusable in a few weeks. But for those who are serious coupon users that should not be a problem because we are also organizers! Is the verb “Google” something in the dictionary yet? It most surely will be!
The key word is organize!
In order to see coupons work effectively you must organize them and keep them with you at all times. I have a three ring binder with pages containing pockets sized perfectly for most manufacturers’ coupons. I have inserted them according to the items alphabetically so I know that soap coupons are near the back and bread or butter coupons are near the front of my well stuffed binder so even though it’s quite full at all times I know basically where each coupon can be found in seconds. This binder is with me wherever I go because I keep it in my vehicle, then it goes into the store with me. In the store I don’t want to be searching for ten minutes for a single coupon! I even plan and write out my grocery list based on how the particular store is laid out. I begin at the back, usually where eggs and milk are found, then move gradually toward the exit. I also have my coupons at the ready based on location. Sometimes I do forget to get a coupon out but when I have the binder along I just dig in and find what I’m looking for quickly. Do not want to miss out on a coupon if at all possible, right?
Combining serious couponing with Google Alerts makes good cents!
I have my Alerts set up so I only receive links to items I intend to purchase. I don’t bother with a coupon just to save a dollar if we never use the product. In order for me to see clipping a coupon as practical we must actually use the product and then I want to look for the ideal time to make that purchase. Most manufacturers offer special pricing on about a 3 month basis. That means that Proctor & Gamble (as an example) may offer items they manufacture at really good prices in June followed by bargain sales in September and then again in December. I clip coupons I know will cover those months and then wait for the sales to begin. That is how those “extreme” couponers get their items practically for free!
Pinching pennies is a way of life for many because it’s fun and practical
With today’s gasoline prices we cannot afford to run around from store to store unless there are some major discounts to be found at each stop. By using coupons and taking advantage of hot sales in those stores, I save about half off on my grocery bill each week now. That may not be considered “extreme” but I am saving a whole lot more than I used to do before Google Alerts and coupons put me on the right track. I now set aside a few minutes each day to devote completely to searching through those Alerts for usable bargains so between the items on sale and the coupons they are like red flags pointing the way so now I can always find ways to save my family money, and that makes life sweet!