In many aspects, Walmart is the least expensive place to get groceries and other goods. However, sometimes shopping sales with coupons at other stores is actually cheaper. The way to get the best deals is to learn how to use coupons for Walmart. Using these 7 ways to use coupons for Walmart you can usually have the least expensive one-stop shopping experience available.
1. Use manufacturer coupons – Walmart accepts manufacturer coupons that scan without trouble. Sometimes coupons (no matter how valid they are) refuse to scan. If the coupon does not scan, Walmart managers have the right to refuse them. If this happens to you and the product that you were about to buy with the coupon isn’t vital, ask them to remove the product from your cart and save on it elsewhere. You can find a huge database of manufacturer coupons here.
2. Price match – Here is a website that shows you all the price match ups for the week in stores near you. You simply select your state>Select all stores> hit the start button>click on the star (dead center on the star) that is above the words Stock Up sales> Select shrink. Now you have all 4 & 5-star items (40-100% off) in your area highlighted.
After looking at the site, write down the items you’d like to buy and price match them at Walmart. You can also print the list off (although I found this takes a lot of ink and paper). Make sure to price match produce and major sale items. One really great thing about Walmart and price matching is that often the good deals have sold out at the local grocery stores who are hosting the sale. Yet, they are usually in stock and you can still buy them for the same sale price at Walmart.
*Note about price matching. You can only price match identical items. You can’t price match a cluster item sale like buy 2 boxes of cereal and a gallon of milk for $5.99. You can’t price match free items (unless it is buy one get one free and specifies how much the first item is), or items that offer cash back or rewards as the discount like: Buy cereal at $3.50 and receive 2 Up rewards making it $1.50 (you can not price match the cereal to $1.50). To keep it simple I think of it this way. The only items I can price match are identical items that are a single set sale price at a local store.
3. Download and use the Walmart Savings Catcher App. If you missed an item that had an eligible price match (on sale in your area) Walmart will credit you for it. You simply enter your receipt number and date in, wait 72 hours, and Walmart finds all eligible price matches for you. You have credited the extra savings you may have missed in the form of a gift card. The money goes on an eCard. You can use it right away, or wait until you have a good amount on it and then use it. It’s free savings. I still recommend price matching and couponing, but everyone is bound to miss a deal sometimes. This app helps you to catch them all! You can download it here.
4. Get cash back by using Ibotta and Checkout51. Ibotta is an awesome app that works for just about any popular grocery store and some retail stores and theaters allow you to earn cash back is called Ibotta. In the first 3 months of using it, I made $77! Ibotta is like a mobile coupon app/rebate machine. When you buy something being sponsored by Ibotta and the store you bought it at you will earn cash back. At the end of your shopping trip to redeem an item you need to follow a quick process of learning a fact, watching a short clip, or sharing it on Facebook. After that, you simply take a quick photo of your receipt and the product you bought and the cash will be credited to your account. Plus, if you sign up and redeem your first purchase/item you will receive a $2.00 bonus which is a pretty great deal. Click here to sign up for Ibotta.
Use Checkout51 Another free app (also a website if you don’t have a smartphone). It is very similar to Ibotta but it can be used with any store. I’ve tested it and It works great! Plus, unlike Ibotta, it isn’t stored exclusive, which is great for people who live in smaller towns and that don’t shop at big chain grocery stores. You can get cash back on milk, eggs, and other everyday groceries. I use this and Ibotta together as well as a price match it and use a coupon. Using all these methods I save a ton. And I sometimes get items for free! Sign up for Checkout51 here!
5. Buy online and use the free ship to store service. Often (although not always) Walmart beats competitors on their online prices. I like to check the exact same items that I want to buy on Walmart and if it is cheaper I use the ship to store options. Then a few days later (sometimes a week) I will stop in and get my items that were shipped there for FREE.
6. Look for their clearance sections. Last year they had a HUGE clearance section in the summer. One day I was lucky enough to go into Walmart the day they were having a 50% off all clearance tags (which were already 50-80% off). I got all of my Christmas presents for my son, nieces, and nephews for about 20% of the total retail value! Christmas and many birthdays were done for the kids in my family in August.
7. Buy Great Value brand items. If you can’t price match or have a coupon for a particular item OR if the Great Value item is less, opt for that. Being brand loyal will cost you in the long run. Try in most all cases to stick with the cheapest (unless there are unhealthy ingredients in the cheaper version) and you will save.
Walmart Coupon Policy
The Walmart Coupon Policy can be a bit confusing for even the most seasoned Walmart shopper. To maximize your savings at Walmart, make sure to read and study Walmart Coupon Policy.
Tips and Warnings: Often Walmart is not consistent in the inventory they carry and what other stores in other states or even communities carry. It is a bit of a frustration to read about an awesome deal going on at Walmart and drive there only to find that it was never at my local store. Calling them is difficult too. I’ve tried calling and never quite gotten through in an efficient manner. If I did get through it usually meant waiting on hold for a minimum of 10 minutes until the store clerk could go see what I wanted was in stock and come back and answer me. So I recommend being cautious about trips to Walmart if you are only going for one item. Also, don’t get your heart set on them carrying an item at a great deal. Most other stores i.e. Target, Kroger, etc. I can rely on. Walmart I have just learned to take it all with a grain of salt. I consider myself lucky if the item that has a great coupon on it is actually there.
Walmart lost millions last year to fraudulent coupons. They are really cracking down on them. I think they have scared the cashiers’ silly about accepting coupons that don’t scan. So just kindly ask for a manager if your cashier is sweating bullets about a coupon that won’t go through. If the manager says no, just let it be.
Overall, Walmart is a great place for a one-stop shop. Many moms with kids have a hard enough time just getting to the store and shopping. Going to multiple stores to get great deals is often unrealistic. I recommend shopping at Walmart using these techniques if you are in that boat. You will save considerably by price matching, using the coupon match up sites, getting cash back through iBotta and Checkout51, and using the site to store free shipping methods. Also, ask your manager if and when they will be having their huge toy sale on clearance prices day so you can stock up for birthday and Christmas presents.
New at Couponing? Check out this post: Couponing for Beginners: 11 Tips That Will Save You Thousands.
Are you a couponing Pro? Check out this post: 17 Mistakes Couponers Make and How to Avoid them.