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Cut Your Grocery Bill In Half!
with Stephanie Nelson, The Coupon Mom
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FAQ

These are the most commonly asked questions.  Please read each question to see if we can answer your question here.  We are not able to respond to the majority of emails we receive.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. How do I get started?
  2. Why won't the coupons print on my computer?
  3. What do the codes mean on the grocery deals lists?
  4. Where can I find the coupons referenced on the Grocery Deals by State lists?
  5. When do the prices change?
  6. How do I save more than 50% on my groceries with this program?
  7. How do I  help feed the hungry with this program?
  8. How does the Virtual Coupon Organizer and/or Grocery Coupon Database work?
  9. How can I get my store added to the site?

How do I get started?

1.  Review the Grocery Deals list for your state or store each week. Even if you do not have the coupons from prior weeks, it will give you an idea of the kinds of deals you can expect in future weeks as your coupon supply grows.

Buy the Sunday newspaper each week (a discounted subscription makes financial sense) and save each week's entire circular, writing the date on the front.  Keep the circulars in some sort of filing system (lying flat in a box in order of date or hanging in files) and cut out the coupons you need when you make your weekly shopping list with the Grocery Deals list for your state. You can also cut out the coupons you know you'll use each week and file them in a small coupon organizer for convenience.  Be sure the save the rest of the circular, because in future weeks many items will go on sale that can be free (or almost free) when you use the coupon.  If you don't use that item, you can donate it to charity and help feed the hungry at virtually no cost.  Watch this video to learn how to use this coupon system.

If your store is not listed, or if your state does not have a Grocery Deals list yet, you can use its Grocery Coupon Organizer to create your own Grocery Deals list for any store.

Even if you do not use grocery coupons, you can save dramatically on your groceries by using our lists as a planning tool to find sale items and loss leaders (products sold below cost to attract shoppers).

Why won't the coupons print on my computer?

You need to install the coupon printer to print coupons.  If your installation is not working, send an email to the appropriate printable coupon link to ask for technical support.

    For Coupons.com, send an email here

    For SmartSource.com, read the troubleshooting guide here

If you are trying to print the coupons from the Grocery Coupon Database or the Virtual Coupon Organizer, only the top listings with the pictures are printable coupons.  Simply click on the View Coupon link to print a coupon.  The coupons listed in the database without pictures are NOT printable.  They are listings of coupons from the Sunday newspaper.  Read instructions below on how to use the Grocery Coupon Database.

If your printing problem has to do with downloading the coupon printer, start by reading this Troubleshooting Guide.

What do the codes mean on the Grocery Deals lists?

The codes in the first column are referencing the date that deal's coupon came out in the Sunday newspaper.  If you see "N/A", that means the deal is a sale item, but does not have a coupon to match it.  If you see, for example, "1/6 RP" that means the coupon for that item came out in the January 6th RedPlum circular.  Read instructions below on how to use the Grocery Deals lists.  Watch this video to understand this coupon system.

Where can I find the coupons referenced on the Grocery Deals lists?

Most of the grocery coupons listed come from the Sunday newspaper.  There are usually two coupon circulars printed on glossy paper.  One says "SmartSource" across the top in red letters, and the other has the word "RedPlum" across the top.  Every circular has the date it came out in small print on the top of the circular's spine (on the side).  When you get the circulars, be sure to write the date on the front to make it easy to find.

There is a column on the Grocery Deals by State list that refers to the coupon source.  If there is no coupon for the item (but the item is listed because the sale price is a good value), then it will say "N/A" for "not applicable." 

If there is a coupon for the item, it will show the date the coupon came out in the Sunday newspaper.  It will also say "S" for SmartSource or "RP" for RedPlum.  This makes it easy to find the coupon you need from the coupon circulars you saved. If your stores accept printable coupons (check with your store manager) then you can check the printable coupon links for free coupons.

If you see "S1" or "S2" next to a date (for example, 8/8) that means there were 2 circulars from that source that week.  Expect that to happen 2 or 3 times a year.

Some weeks there are additional inserts from certain stores or manufacturers.  For example, Procter & Gamble issues a monthly "Brandsaver" circular, General Mills has special circulars, and Kroger (and related chains) have special coupon circulars.  Those coupons will be noted with a "P&G" or a "GM" or "KG" after the date. 

When do the prices change?

Each state's stores change their prices on different days.  This site's priority is to have price changes available in a timely manner.  Most price lists are updated the morning prices change and most of our national store lists have Preview lists available a few days before prices change.  In the rare case of a delay, there will be a specific message indicating when the list will be updated.

How do I save more than 50% on my groceries with this program?

The key to saving with this program is consistency and planning.  Get the Sunday newspaper coupons every week and save the entire circular, and take advantage of the Grocery Deals list every week to save on a wide range of products.  Always check your state's Grocery Coupon Database to see all the coupons available. The basic concepts include:

--Plan, plan, plan.  Planning your list before you go to the store will reduce your grocery spending.  Plan your meals using sale items from the weekly list.  That is why our lists show the major meat, chicken and fish sales each week even though they rarely have coupons.  When you have a plan, you also spend less time in the grocery store.  Studies show that the more time you spend in the store, the more money you spend.  Avoid impulse shopping and never shop when you are hungry.

--Get more than one set of coupons.  Trade coupons with a friend, ask friends and neighbors who throw their coupons away if they would give them to you, buy extra copies of the newspaper when there are many coupons you use that week.  "Charity shoppers" buy good deals for charity every single week along with their family's groceries.  Therefore, many Charity Shoppers have a collection box for grocery coupons at their schools and places of worship.  They are able to buy far more food for charity and save more for their families with coupons that others would throw in the trash anyway.

--Stock up on products you use when they are Best Deals.  When items you use are at low prices, be sure to buy as much as you can.  That way, you never need to pay full price for those items.  Over time, you will have a "stockpile" of several items, and your grocery spending will go down noticeably.  Initially, your spending may be the same as you are stocking up.

--Try being brand flexible.  Consider trying similar brands for products you use when they are on the Best Deals list.  Many store brands are listed as well, and most of them are Unadvertised sale items.  Being able to compare major brands to store brand options before you shop will help you plan and save.

How do I help feed the hungry with this program?

The reason this site is free to users is to raise awareness of hunger in our community, and show how easy it can be for all of us to help.  If every shopper donated just one item per week to charity, we would feed thousands of people who go hungry every week.  One in five children in our country go to bed or go to school hungry.

We ask you to buy food items and donate them to a local charity of yours.  Learn what ideal charity food donations are and how to find your nearest food bank on the Cut Out Hunger page.  You can also find your nearest food pantry by contacting your area food bank through the Feed the Hungry network of food banks. It is easy to have a box or bin in your home and when it is full, make a trip once every month or so to donate your food.  Most of us have a food pantry within 5 miles of our homes, or you can wait until a food drive.  Places of worship, schools, Scouts and Mail Carriers have annual food drives--there are plenty of convenient ways to give.

This site is not sponsored by any organization.  There are no revenues being generated by your grocery purchases that are donated to hunger organizations.  The way to feed the hungry is to look for items marked "charity!" and buy a few to donate.  Thank you!

How does the Grocery Coupon Database save me money?

The Grocery Coupon Database is a comprehensive, interactive database of the SmartSource and RedPlum coupons that have come out in a state's primary newspaper. 

You can use the Grocery Coupon Database to create your own Best Deals list at any store you use.  Simply use your store's ad circular, note the sale items you would like to buy, and see if a coupon has been issued in your market for that item.  If so, you can "select" that coupon.  When you are finished selecting coupons, you can print a list of the coupons you need, with the date they were issued, and cut them out.  Watch this video to understand how to use the Grocery Coupon Database.

How can I get my store added to the site?

The Coupon Mom site currently lists weekly deals at 60 stores across 50 states. We realize there are hundreds of regional grocery store chains around the country and cannot list all of them.  However, the Coupon Mom site lists weekly deals lists for 14 national drug and discount stores that can help most people save money wherever they live (Wal-Mart, Target, Walgreens, CVS, Rite Aid, Dollar General, Family Dollar, Dollar Tree, Costco, Sam's Club, Kmart, Whole Foods, Aldi, Save A Lot).  We will not be adding more stores at this time.

 
 
 
 
 
 
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