You are probably looking for ways to boost your grocery budget. This is because everything you need has gone up in price. “More for less” is the catchphrase of 2015.

But there are ways to cut through all of this price gouging and save money. You just need a good imagination, a reliable pair of scissors, pen and paper, and the ability to perform basic math:

  • Shop the Sales.

This way to boost your grocery budget may seem like a no-brainer, but people who are in a hurry rarely have time to peruse the newspaper and troll the internet looking for deals. One suggestion is to stay in one day at lunch time and look on the internet for bargains. Wednesday is usually when the food ads get posted in the newspaper. Give it a try.

You don’t have to chase around from sale to sale. But while you are shopping at the market, if you see an item on sale, buy more than one. Then when you would ordinarily need this item in the future, you won’t have to purchase it – thus, saving money 1: on the sale price, and 2: by purchasing more than one of them. You’d be amazed at how quickly this type of savings adds up and affects your grocery bill.

  • Check the Unit Price.

The food retailers want to pull one over on you. They will put one large box of Rice Crispies next to a smaller box. Most people don’t squint their eyes and read the unit price – which, by the way, is always in near-microscopic print. But bring along your reading glasses when you head out to the supermarket because they will help you to get a super-good deal.

To boost your grocery budget, look at the unit price on both items because this is the real price. You will find that the small box is 10 cents per unit, and the large box is 16. How can this be? The market uses deceptive strategies such as this one to get you to pay more. More for less, more for less.

So it is less expensive in the long run if you double up on those small boxes of Rice Crispies and forget about the large ones.

  • Look Up and Look Down.

Another deceptive practice of the big grocery chains is to place less expensive items on the top and bottom shelves and place the most expensive items at eye level. They must think that shoppers are really stupid. But they’re not. People are just overworked and in a hurry. Checking on the top and bottom shelves will net you a sizable savings over time and boost your grocery budget considerably.

  • Use Coupons.

Coupons are great. If you are a stay-at-home mom, take a walk on paper day. You will find stacks of newspapers in front of foreclosed homes and unoccupied rentals. Grab them. Ask your working-mom friends to save their coupon inserts that come in the Sunday paper. You can also print coupons online.

Make sure that you have them in alphabetical order, by item, i.e. M for mouthwash, P for pickles. If you are going to cash in a lot of coupons on one shopping trip, tell the person in line behind you that he/she may want to try another register since you will be cashing in a gazillion coupons when it’s your turn at the check-out.

Some stores will double coupons and some will take coupons from other stores. If their coupon policy is not posted, ask them about doubling, tripling, and other stores’ coupons.

People who work outside the home can benefit from using coupons also. Hire your kiddos to clip coupons for you in the evening while they’re watching T.V. You will save lots more money than what you pay them to help you out. This is a good way to boost your grocery budget.

Coupon clipping sites and coupon clubs abound on the internet. Join a couple of them and get your share of the savings.

  • Make a List.

Always, always make a grocery list before you food shop. If you don’t, you’ll end up overspending. And don’t shop while you’re hungry – for obvious reasons.

Beat the market conglomerates at their game. Save money by collecting coupons, making a list, shopping the unit price, checking the top and bottom shelves, by shopping the sales, and making a list. You will feel delighted when you return home with money in your pocket. 🙂