The supermarket can be overwhelming at times with its vibrant displays, special buys and smells of freshly baked bread. Supermarkets are designed to entice shoppers to buy certain foods and are often quite sneaky in making you put more items in your trolley when you just came in ‘’for a few items”.
When short on time and shopping on a budget, online shopping can be a good option to make sure you buy only what you need. Here are our top tips for shopping smarter not harder when it comes to online grocery shopping.
Compare grocery stores
Most supermarkets have the option of online shopping, as well as online catalogues or newsletters. This allows for easy price comparisons between stores. Some supermarkets also have apps, allowing the convenience to browse on your phone and become familiar with any product filters or specials. Online shopping allows you to filter specific products in relation to brands or certain dietary requirements whether that be dairy free or gluten free.
The convenience of online grocery shopping allows you to choose when you would like your groceries delivered. Picking delivery times that suit you as well as when it may be the cheapest can help you stay on track with your budget. Delivery between quieter times such as mid-week between Tuesday and Thursday can help reduce delivery costs as well as taking advantage of minimum spends for free delivery. Another option is store pick up or click and collect for no cost, which also reduces the temptation of browsing the supermarket for any last minute, impulse buys.
Checking food labels and comparing prices
Two of the many pros of online shopping are the ability to check food labels and prices between products. Filters available with online shopping can help you sort prices from low to high, as well as compare per unit price (for example cost per 100g). Download our label guide to learn more about how to read food labels.
Create a list
Compiling a list of items you need for the week can reduce overspending and food wastage. In fact, a recent study showed that 50% of grocery items were purchased on impulse. Whether you are meal prepping or creating a list of ingredients you need for dinners this week, a list takes the guess work out of grocery shopping. With online shopping, there is also the convenience of being able to check the cupboard while you are shopping, which helps to prevent buying any unnecessary items or overstocking.
Track the running total whilst shopping
The task of browsing a store and keeping track of how much your trolley is adding up to is very difficult. The benefit of online shopping is you can keep track of how much you are spending throughout the shop. This can help you stick to a budget as you can easily remove or swap items from your cart if it is costing too much.
Final checks before purchasing
Sometimes when you get to the checkout at the supermarket you realise you have forgotten an important staple item like milk or bread. With online shopping, you can check your cart to make sure you have the items you need, as well as get rid of any purchases before checking out. These final checks can save you from an extra trip to the supermarket or coming home with one too many bags of mixed lettuce.
The bottom line
Online grocery shopping can be a simple tool to shopping on a budget as well as saving time. Keep these simple tips and tricks in mind when doing your next weekly shop.