Are you a disorganized shopper? Can’t corral the kids to think? Make several trips to the store during the week because you’re always forgetting something? Maybe you just can’t quite get through the checkout process without a little coupon mishap? If so, this is for you. Today I’m going to help you get right. Let’s dive into 5 steps for a great shopping trip. It will save you money and the hassle.

Step 1: Take Inventory

At this stage, you make note of everything you are running low on in the house. Go through your fridge, pantry, and cabinets to get an idea of what you need. Do not forget to consult with the recipes you are making for the week as well. Write down any and everything. Note: you do not have to buy it all, especially if you are not out of something. This list will help you get started with the next step.

Step 2: Sales

After you have made your list, it’s time to see what’s on sale. At this stage, grab the sales ads for all your favorite grocery destinations. Match up what you need to what’s on sale, and write down the sale and sale price next to the item on your list for later. Be sure to look up unadvertised deals for stores like Publix.

Step 3: Deal Sites

Next, you’re going to see what other ways you can save by looking up deal scenario sites. These sites show you the best coupon matchups that you can do for that week. They note which coupons to use and from where, as well as the sales price and price after the coupon. They come in handy for extra savings opportunities on the items you have on your list.

Step 3 1/2

Rewrite your list. Only include things you need immediately and things on sale. If they do not fall into those categories, leave them off until the next shopping trip. I try to stick to things that are only on sale to increase my savings rate. Notate what the sale is, how much of an item you need to buy, and what coupons you need to pair with them. The more details, the better. It will save you from mishaps at the register.

Step 4: Collect Your Coupons

There are several ways you can collect the appropriate coupons you need. You may need to purchase from a coupon seller if you’re looking for a newspaper savings booklet. If you’re doing digital deals, add coupons directly to your store loyalty cards. If you are pairing cash back apps, make sure your coupons are on your account before shopping or connect your account to your store’s loyalty number. Dealing with paper coupons? Make sure you cut the correct quantity and organize them together for easy access at the register. Only remove coupons for items you did not get from the pile. You should be able to hand the remaining stack to the cashier.

Step 5: Shop

After you get all organized, it’s time to hit the store. I like to go alone to ensure it’s peaceful, but if you can not make that happen, work with what you got. Stick to the list, checking off items as you go. Make sure your stomach is full so you do not pick up snacks and only buy what’s written down. If you follow these 5 steps for a great shopping trip, you will be good to go.

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