September 11, 2017
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"Walmart Checkout Features Ad Match and Coupon Policy Signs" by Walmart / CC BY 2.0 via Flickr
If you want consistently affordable prices, head to Walmart. This mega chain is a savvy shopper's deal haven, but wait a minute - I'm about to make it an even better experience for you. These are 25 Walmart shopping hacks that will put their slogan to shame. "Save money. Live better," it's time to step up your game.
Of course, the easiest way to save is by subscribing to Walmart email alerts from DealsPlus. Not only will we share all the coupons, deals, and sales, but we'll also inform you of Walmart's latest updates via our blog. Click here to subscribe!
- Some coupons can actually pay you.
According to Walmart's website regarding Coupon Policy, "If coupon value exceeds the price of the item, the excess may be given to the customer as cash or applied toward the basket purchase." For example, if you present a coupon for $3 off Crest toothpaste that is on sale for $2.47, Walmart will pay you the coupon difference. That's 53¢ back in your wallet or towards your purchase thanks to a coupon!
- Unsurprisingly, they price match.
They will match the price of any current sale, and you don't even have to bring the ad in - cashiers will look it up for you. Even better, they will price match online prices at several stores, including Amazon, as long as you can show proof of pricing in store. It'll be super convenient to have the Amazon app handy so you can price check against the products. Meat and produce can also be price matched as long as there is a specific unit price.
Price match for online retailers are limited to: Academy.com, Amazon.com, Autozone.com, Babiesrus.com, Basspro.com, Bedbathandbeyond.com, Bestbuy.com, Cabelas.com, Dickssportinggoods.com, Dollargeneral.com, Familydollar.com, Homedepot.com, Jcpenny.com, Kmart.com, Kohls.com, Lowes.com, Michaels.com, Newegg.com, Officedepot.com, Oreillyauto.com, Pepboys.com, Petco.com, Petsmart.com, Sears.com, SportsAuthority.com, Staples.com, Target.com, Toysrus.com, Walgreens.com
- Download the Walmart app and fall in love with the Savings Catcher.
With the Savings Catcher, Walmart will do the price matching for you while you shop. Here's how it works: after you shop at Walmart, scan your receipt into the app or log into your account and enter the receipt number, and within 7 days, they'll have completed price comparisons at other stores. If they find a cheaper price elsewhere, they'll credit you the difference in a Walmart gift card!
- Shop early in the morning or late at night.
One blogger shops as early as 5 to 6 AM, but she suggests that you arrive before 9 AM at least. In the morning, everything is well stocked to fulfill the daytime rush, and meat and produce that are approaching their "sell by" dates are marked down and sold to deal snatchers in the morning. In general, by getting to the store early, you're giving yourself a better guarantee of finding the items you want.
As for late night shopping, many Walmart locations are open overnight, and that is when the entire store is cleaned out and shelves are restocked. You'll probably avoid any kind of line, miss the masses of shoppers, and store employees are hard at work everywhere if you should need assistance.
- Avoid shopping during the first three days of the month.*
*If you do not have government assistance. As one of the largest retailers in the country, Walmart is a popular shopping destination for food stamp holders, especially during the first three days of the month when food stamps are distributed.
- Shop online and use in-store pickup to take advantage of Walmart's Pickup Discounts.
Earlier this year, Walmart introduced Pickup Discounts and it's pretty self-explanatory. Walmart is offering additional discounts on thousands of item if you opt to pick up your items in store rather than having them delivered. You can shop all Walmart Pickup Discounts here. Otherwise, if you prefer to have it shipped to you, just know that Walmart now offers free 2-day shipping on your purchase of $35 or more.
Occasionally, Walmart's own online prices will beat their in-store prices, so in that case, buy it online and choose the in-store pickup option. This will avoid the extra step of buying in store and having to price match when you discover the product is cheaper online. Most in-store pickups are available the same day, but if not, they are usually available within 24 hours. Best of all, there is no extra charge!
- Print manufacturer coupons and save (even if it has a store's name on it).
Walmart will accept almost any coupon (at the manager's discretion) as long as it clearly states "Manufacturer Coupon," has an expiration date, and has a scannable barcode. If you have multiple of the same coupon, you can buy several of that item and use one manufacturer coupon per item.
Deal Tip: Walmart houses a ton of travel size items priced around $1. If the manufacturer coupon's fine print does not exclude travel size or trial size items, it's possible that you can score free products!
- Walmart generously accepts competitor's coupons.
You can stack competitor's coupons (which is essentially a price match) on top of your manufacturer coupons for a monstrosity of savings. #winning.
- Craving sweets? Buy yesterday's baked goods.
If you can get to Walmart early in the morning, take advantage of their discounted, day-old baked goods. There is absolutely nothing wrong with them except for the fact that they're dangerously addicting and you might end up buying 5 containers of brownies. Even if you're not going to eat everything immediately, freeze them for later.
You can also get day-old for only $1 – not a bad deal. And with only a day into its life cycle, the bread is still pretty dang tasty, if you ask us. Especially when it comes cheap.
- However, there are some things you shouldn't buy at Walmart.
Diapers are an example. For instance, based on a past price research, Walmart is selling 148 diapers for about $0.26 a diaper. Amazon is selling the same type of diaper in the same quantity for about $0.23 a diaper, and it can be $0.22 if you subscribe and save 5%. Moreover, you can save $1.00 on your first delivery with a coupon Amazon offers. On Amazon, even if you make a one-time purchase, you would be saving $3.47.
Passionate Penny Pincher suggests avoiding toiletries as well unless you know for a fact that they are a good price. She says it takes a little more research to find the rock-bottom prices, but it's worth it, especially when you clip some coupons!
- These are the items you don't want to miss at Walmart.
I'll usually go to the Dollar Store if I want to find simple and easy party supplies, but did you know, Walmart has a $0.97 party supplies section? The styles are great, and you'll find larger quantities than Dollar Tree. You'll also find great deals on crafting supplies, containers (a large selection of small storage bins for $1.00 or less!), copy paper, office supplies, and clothing basics. Walmart also has Special Value labels for great seasonal prices on produce!
- Request a rain check for a sold-out item.
Complete a rain check form at customer service if your product is out of stock, and Walmart will give you a ring when the item is back.
- End caps are your new best friend.
You'll never know the treasures you can find at the end caps! End caps are the end sections of aisles that are filled with a plethora of clearance goods that will get any savvy shopper's adrenaline pumping. This is great for anyone who is not in a hurry because you can take the time to browse each department's end caps.
- Shop Great Value or Equate brands.
Great Value is Walmart's generic store brand and Equate is a cheaper brand for brand-name dupes. You can save a ton of cash if you stick to these names. For example, a 30-pack of Hefty Storage Slider Gallon bags charges $0.10 per bag, while Great Value offers the same bag for just $0.05 per bag. If you're indifferent about buying generic, stick with this cost-friendly option.
- Keep your receipt for potential price adjustments.
If the price of an item you just purchased drops within 7 days after your transaction, take your receipt to Walmart's customer service and earn credit for the difference.
- Use MyPoints to earn store credit.
MyPoints is a free service where users can log in online and print off coupons. Those coupons will also allow you to rack up store credit. Deals change by the day but consist of shoppers pairing their savings with in-store deals. Once a certain amount of bucks are spent, dollars are earned back toward their next purchase. For instance through spring, spending $20 at Walmart will earn you $10.
- Try before you buy.
Are you on the fence about a new product? Or maybe you just need a little vs. a lot? Walmart allows you to take free samples in order to test out something new. Nothing beats free stuff.
- Fill up your gas tank at Walmart and save.
Fill up with Murphy USA and you can save huge. The brand partners with Walmart to allow special discounts per every gallon. Deals change throughout the year, such as cents off, etc. and are redeemable when paying with a Walmart gift or credit card.
- Take advantage of Shipping Discounts.
One of Walmart's newest features was launched earlier this summer, and it gives shoppers the option to save money when they opt for slowing shipping speeds (3 to 5 business days instead of 2 business days) on online purchases at Walmart.com. Of course, only certain items are eligible, but it is still a great deal if you can wait. Read more about Shipping Discounts on our blog post here.
- Learn the Walmart Price Tag codes.
You can save a pretty penny when you understand Walmart's price tag system. Learning to decode the numbers may indicate when it's time to buy and when it's time to hold off and buy later. Here's what you need to know:
a. Price ending in a "7": It's the original price, such as $4.97. You are paying full price with no discounts.
b. Price ending in a "5": This is the price after the first markdown, such as $3.25. It's not the cheapest they may potentially drop it, but it's still better than the initial price.
c. Price ending in a "1": If you see a price like $2.91, that means this is the lowest price the item will go. This is the best deal you're going to get, so don't want any longer!
- Shop everything online and get familiar with Walmart.com.
Walmart offers new rollback deals, sales, and limited time savings from week to week and you can easily keep tabs on all of their latest offer at walmart.com. Walmart has a few deals page that will be handy during the holiday seasons so make sure you get familiar with their site and shop all the deals from the comfort of the bed. Here's a few to get you started:
a. Dare to Compare: Find real-time price comparison on a number of popular products against competitors like Amazon
b. Clearance: Shop discounts on best-sellers, rollback deals, Pickup Discounts, and more
- Did you know there's a special section for the actual clearance deals?
Don't go wandering off to the clearance section to look for clearance prices. It seems a little strange, but the most reduced prices are hidden in the electronics section, down low in the glass cabinets or under their respective items. They'll also rarely have price tags, so you should ask to see the clearance products. We got this tip from Rather Be Shopping, so it's a good investigation to lead for yourself. To access all of the clearance goods online at Walmart.com, type "Clearance" into the search bar.
- Shopped their Refurbished deals.
To access these deals, go to Walmart.com and type "Refurbished" into their search bar. You'll be redirected to a landing page dedicated to refurbished goods - "New low prices on like-new items." Electronics, cell phones, video games, home goods, laptops, and more can be found on this page, so go nuts.
- Save by buying display models.
If an item you want is out of stock, it's worth it to ask the manager if you can purchase the one one display. You might be missing the packaging, instructions manual, and the like, but you will probably be getting a discount in lieu of the missing materials. Regardless, the product should be good as new, and this is a tactic that you should apply to plenty of stores.
- Subscribe to Walmart email alerts from DealsPlus.
*Insert shameless plug* We're only suggesting this because we know how helpful it can be. When you subscribe to our email alerts, we're going to send coupons, deals, sales, promotional offers - everything you could ever want about Walmart - right to your inbox. You'll even get the occasional blog posts like these great shopping hacks, too. Don't miss out! Subscribe here.
With all these awesome hacks, Walmart will surely become an even bigger mecca for easy and affordable shopping. Do you know of any hacks that are not on this list? Share them with us in the comments below!