Use Your Grocer’s Web Site to Save

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Spending just a few minutes online before heading to the grocery store can result in some massive savings. Most major and neighborhood markets have large portions of their Web sites dedicated to coupons and savings and it’s time to start taking advantage.

Safeway (Stock Quote: SWY) and Kroger (Stock Quote: KR)

These two national chains both use Shortcuts.com to provide online coupons to their customers. Available through either store Web site the centralized address above, 80-100 coupons are listed weekly for savings of more than $100.

These can be downloaded directly to the club shopping card or printed and redeemed in store. Both chains offer the option of entering a zip code for more personalized coupons, which are also valid at all of their subsidiaries.

Safeway owns Carrs, Dominicks, Genuardi’s, PavilionsRandalls, Tom Thumb and Vons, and Kroger owns Baker’s Supermarkets, Dillon’s, Food 4 Less, FoodsCo, Fred Meyer, Fry’s Food, Hilander, Jay C, King Scoopers, QFC, Ralphs, Smiths and Scott’s Food and Pharmacy.

SuperValu (Stock Quote: SVU)

This supermarket conglomerate owns some of the best-known grocery stores in the country but lacks a centralized coupon Web site.

Because of this, most of the stores list a page or two of printable weekly specials, but do not have the variety of Safeway or Kroger. One exception in the bunch is Shoppers Food Warehouse, which posts a weekly eight-page circular to its Web site.

SuperValu owns Acme, Albertsons, Bigg’s, Bristol Farms, Cub Foods, Farm Fresh, Hornbacher’s, Jewel/Jewel-Osco, Lazy Acres, Lucky Stores, Save-A-Lot, Shaw’s, Shop ‘n Save, Shoppers Food and Pharmacy, Star Market and Sunflower Market.

Whole Foods Market (Stock Quote: WFMI)

Shoppers at Whole Foods know they are going to be paying more for that organic tag, and the three-page weekly coupon PDF won’t make that much of a dent in your overall grocery bill but the coupons they do offer tend to involve savings of 25% or more. Many of the coupons involve hefty discounts on proteins so keeping an eye out for a rack of lamb or fresh scallops could make a fancy home-cooked meal affordable on a week it may not otherwise have been.

Sprouts

Regional and up-and-coming stores are letting their customers in on the online savings as well. Sprouts, an organic grocery store popping up all over the Southwest posts weekly and monthly ads on its Web site with the promise of double ad days. The savings on any applicable coupons are doubled (or halved as the case may be) every Wednesday.

Publix (Stock Quote: PUSH)

This major chain offers not only the typical online weekly ad but also a weekly selection of buy one, get one free deals. Recently, they had nearly 50 of these offers in one week on a huge variety of items from fresh figs to olive oil. And unlike many stores who offer a two- or three-page weekly ad, Publix publishes 16 pages of sales.

Coupon-only sites

Web sites like TheGroceryGame.com, Couponmom.com and Thecouponclippers.com advertise supplemental coupons that will get shoppers even more savings than offered by their individual stores. With massive listings of manufacturer and local coupons that can often allow customers to double their savings, it is certainly worth a stop at these sights after seeing what your specific store has to offer.

The Grocery Game and The Coupon Clippers also both offer coupon forums for shoppers to share even more savings and advice.

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