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How to Keep Track of Your Discounts

Stever’s 4 easy ways to get the most of your money by tracking discount cards, coupons, and memberships.

By
Stever Robbins
4-minute read
Episode #187

Tip #3 – Keep One-Time Discounts in a File

Some discounts are only good once, like coupons and Groupons. I keep those in an envelope that lives within arm’s reach. When I know I’m going out to buy a product, I quickly riffle through the envelope to double-check possible coupons.

My friend Caroline lists her coupons in an online Google Docs spreadsheet. She shares it with her family so anyone making a purchase can quickly find out if there’s a coupon they can use in the envelope.

I keep my less-commonly-used coupons and cards in a physical file. See my episode on storing credit cards and gift cards for details.

Tip #4 – Go Shopping For What You Need, Offline and Online

If you have a specific purchase in mind, do your online research. Comparison shopping can sometimes save more than any discount! If you want a specific product, quickly log in to any purchase sites you’re a member of and research the product’s price. Just run down the list of sites on page 2 of your spreadsheet.
 
As for keeping usernames and passwords, I don’t have a general solution. Since I don’t really care if my account on discount sites get hacked—what’s an intruder going to do, get my 10% discount on kibble? Oooh, scary!—I use the same username/password combination for all my discount sites. I do not use that username/password for any other sites, though, and I never allow those sites to remember any credit card numbers or other sensitive data.

The Bottom Line

Discounting is a great way to save money, as long as you do it efficiently. Index long-term special offers in a spreadsheet so you can find them quickly. Use keychain tags for places you shop often, and a coupon file for one-time discounts. Use a spreadsheet to find your discounts quickly, and to make it easy for the whole family to share discounts.

Have any other coupon tricks? Let us know in Comments. Email questions and comments to mailto:getitdone@quickanddirtytips.com. Find out more about me and my services at SteverRobbins.com.

Work Less, Do More, and have a Great Life!

RESOURCES:

Dollar Sign image courtesy of Shutterstock

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About the Author

Stever Robbins

Stever Robbins is a graduate of W. Edward Deming’s Total Quality Management training program and a Certified Master Trainer Elite of NLP. He holds an MBA from the Harvard Business School and a BS in Computer Sciences from MIT.