coupon codes

How to get coupon codes and discounts

For decades, coupons have helped shoppers save money on groceries and household items. But the number of ways to find them has grown in recent years.

Now, discounts are available almost everywhere, including inboxes, websites, and smartphone apps. Here’s how to get coupons, in both paper and digital form.

Enroll in rewards programs or sign up for the mailing list for the retailers you frequent most. Many stores send returning customers exclusive coupons or apply discounts automatically during checkout.

Exercise caution, though, when signing up for rewards programs. Retailers may flood your inbox with unwanted messages or use your information, such as demographics and shopping habits, for marketing purposes.

Ask the manufacturer

If you favor certain brands, contact the companies directly. They’ll often send coupons or samples when you provide feedback (or simply request them). As a plus, you can use a manufacturer’s coupon at any store that sells the featured product, barring exclusions.

Companies will often send coupons or samples when you provide feedback.

Here’s how to get in touch with the manufacturer: Look for a “contact us” link on the company’s website. This should direct you to an email form, live chat feature, customer service phone number or mailing address. Another option? Leave a comment on the brand’s social media page.

Search a coupon database or app

Coupon databases are websites that compile printable and digital coupons, including rebates. You can use them to search deals by brand, product, or store and save time. Search “coupon database” on Google to get started. For on-the-go savings, try a free coupon app.

Visit retailer websites and apps

If you plan to purchase an item, check retailer websites first. Most major merchants have a weekly ad, coupon or offers section online. Or you might see a limited-time discount code on the homepage or a banner ad.

Livesey recommends downloading apps for the stores you shop at regularly. Some have features, like Target’s Cartwheel, that make it easy to find store and manufacturer coupons in one place.

Pick up weekly ads at the store

Watch for weekly circulars on display near the front doors or registers. These might include store-specific offers that you can redeem immediately or during a future shopping trip.

Look at the product packaging

Some discounts hide in plain sight at the grocery store. Inspect items, like meat and cereal, for a peel-off coupon attached to the box or packaging. You could get instant savings.

Use social media

Follow social media accounts for stores, brands, and products you like. Many share coupon codes on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

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About the Author

Lillie Byrd

Lillie Byrd is a saving expert for Usevoucher. He has been a newspaper reporter and editor, authored a personal finance book in 2012. She previously was a reporter at Digital Journal, covering consumer products, society, and other business topics. She also has a certificate in finance from Boston University.