Saving money where you can is imperative these days; 93% of shoppers say they have changed their behavior as a result of the economic downturn, according to a report by PwC.
No matter your age, income, or family size, one of the most necessary—and costly expense is food. The good news is that there’s an easy way to save on every grocery bill without having to clip coupons or wait for sales: Just buy store brands.
This simple step can save you significant amounts during every visit—25% on average and up to 60% on certain products, according to ConsumerReports.org.
Many brand-loyal shoppers may be hesitant to try store-brand products, but this can be a very expensive mistake. Here’s everything you need to know about shopping store brand.
You Will Save
While many consumers keep an eye out for coupons for their favorite brand-name products, the store-brand versions are consistently less expensive. This saves you money, plus the time and energy it takes to clip coupons.
Side note: The coupon you’re getting for a name-brand product is actually part of the reason you pay more for it in the first place (to cover the costs of fancier packaging and major marketing campaigns). Additionally, many store brands often offer the same money-back satisfaction guarantees as name brands—yet another point in their favor.
You Don’t Have to Sacrifice Quality
Many shoppers are hesitant to pick up store brands, believing they are of poorer quality. However, higher price is not synonymous with higher quality. In fact, many store-brand products are manufactured in the same facilities as their name-brand counterparts.
But are they really the same? To find out, Consumer Reports recently compared generic and name-brand versions of 19 products to determine whether or not sensory experts could distinguish between the two.
Ultimately, 10 products tied. The name-brand product won in 8 cases, and the store-brand product won once. (Of course, these were the results of professional tasters.) In a poll of 24,000 Consumer Reports readers, 78% said store brands are of the same quality as name brands.
3 Tips for Shopping for Store Brands
Shopping for store brands is a great way to save money every shopping trip. Still, some consumers may be hesitant to abandon their favorite brands or may be skeptical of generic alternatives. If you’re on the fence, here are 3 tips that can help you decide whether to buy store brand:
1) Check the Ingredients: Most store-brand products have identical or similar ingredients to their name-brand competition. Note, however, that some may have the same ingredients yet taste differently due to different proportions.
2) Check the Nutrition Label: The nutrition for name-brand products and store-brand products is often the same, but you will occasionally find that one product has higher fat or sodium, which can help you make a decision.
3) Check the serving size: Some products give you more bang for your buck—but in calories, not savings. Review serving sizes to make sure that you really are getting a better deal.
Reducing your grocery bill is one of the best ways to consistently save money; buying store brand helps you do just that.