The Best Couponing Strategies for the Everyday Saver

You don’t have to go overboard to save big.

Coupons can slash 50 percent or more off your monthly grocery bill, and you don't have to be one of those extreme couponers to save, either.
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If you're shopping online, don't be afraid to ask an online sales representative via chat about available discounts. "By doing this, I've found coupons for $30 off $100 at Express, free overnight shipping from Zappos, and 20 percent off at Kenneth Cole," Woroch says. You can also search for free shipping codes at FreeShipping.org, which participates with stores like Sears, Target, and Kmart.

Don't overspend. Many shoppers have a tendency to overspend when using coupons, but you can avoid that by setting a budget and sticking to it. "You should know what the total is before the cashier tells you," says Spencer.

It's OK to stock up on certain items, says Cataldo, but don't go crazy: Only buy what you'll need for several weeks. "People will say, 'Oh, I'll just buy it because I have a coupon,' but that's not the right approach," she says.

Also try to steer clear of coupons that have a high requirement for how much you need to spend to use them, says Woroch.

Stay organized. Many coupons go to waste simply because people forget they have them or they don't remember the expiration date. Consider setting reminders on your computer or cell phone several days before the coupon is set to expire. Also, carry with you only the coupons you're going to use for that week, so you're not walking around with a wallet or purse stuffed to the brim.

Spencer keeps track of her coupons by storing them in plastic bags in her purse—each one labeled with their respective store.

To reap the rewards of couponing, says Pepper-Hoctor, "You don't have to make this a full-time job."

Twitter: @danielbortz

Corrected on 09/21/2012: A previous version of this article incorrectly listed WebPhone.com as a couponing website. WebPhone.com is an Internet technology provider.