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Stockpiling 101 – Brands & Product Size

Stockpiling 101 – Brands & Product Size. In order to do really well at stockpiling, you will need to purchase the brand that is on sale that matches with your coupons. This means that you may need to “try” new brands in order to get in on the good deals.

Stockpiling 101 - Brands & Product Size

We always tell our hubbies that if a product is FREE or near free, we have nothing to lose.

Stockpiling 101 – Brands & Product Size:

We had always been very brand loyal, so this was a new way of shopping for us. One example is that I had always purchased cascade dishwasher detergent. When I started stockpiling, I kept hearing from my friend Paul about cheap or free electrosol dishwasher detergent.

I decided I had nothing to lose and gave it a try. I could either spend $3.89 on Cascade minus a $.25 coupon or I could spend .50 cents after coupon on electrosol…in the end I like electrosol just as well and I am saving at least $3.00 a package.

Another example was Skippy Peanut Butter. We made the switch from Jif (which rarely goes on sale and never goes FREE) to Skippy which I was able to purchase for FREE! In the end we like Skippy Natural better than Jif so it was a great decision for us to try brands that we normally would not. I suggest giving all brands a chance especially if they are FREE or close to it!

A big mistake that we used to make as a shopper was buying the biggest product size available. We always compared the price per unit.  The reason this is a mistake is that while a product size may be less expensive per unit, the smaller item may be FREE or near free after your coupon.

When stockpiling you will want to purchase products in the smallest size that your coupon allows.  If a coupon doesn’t have a “size limit” then you can use it for “travel size” or “smallest size available” and get that product for free with possible overage.  This is a new way of shopping for most people.  As a result, with this change, we have been using FREE travel size Tide for months matched with the $1/ any size coupon available.

Stockpiling 101

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191 Comments

  1. I agree. I was able to get the Tide Stain release at just $2 after using my coupon when I don’t usually buy Tide.

  2. This is really good information about stockpiling. I’m completely new to it – the Kroger stuff you guys have posted makes my head spin, but I want to try it. Thanks for the info.

    Cheers,
    Tia

  3. I’m wondering is this will work for me. That is, buying the smallest size with the coupon. I live in the country and I have 10 in the family. I sure would have to travel back and forth a lot to buy the small stuff, like Tide for instance. even if it is FREE. I’m new to your site, but am willing to investigate further. Cathy K.

    1. It will work, you just need to purchase more coupons than I do. So for example you need to stockpile the quantity to last your family through the sales cycle which will be far more than what I purchase. You may have to make multiple transactions but they can be in the same shopping trip. Meaning put the bar down or go out to your car and back in or have a child/hubby shop with you to get in on the deals.

  4. @CathyK.:
    I’m new too but what I gathered is that it’s really important to have gathered as many coupons as you can then use them all during one trip. If a coupon doesn’t say”one coupon per transaction”, you cam usually have a coupon for each item you are buying because it doesn’t violate the rule. But if the coupon does say that or if the store’s computer won’t let you do it, yip can always do separate orders or transactions one after another paying as you go after each one. My mum does this au walgreens all the time( but she goes really early when there are no customers. I think Pretty sure I’m right on this. Hope it helped .

    1. Mellybelly – You are right on! There are very few coupons that say 1 per transaction and if they do then just put the bar down and make multiple transactions.

      Starting small is the way to go. Break your order up into multiple transactions to make sure you are getting the deal you thought. Hope this helps.

  5. Is it really cheaper to buy name brand items for most things or do the store brands end up being cheaper than using coupons on brand names?

  6. I tried getting the travel size tide at walmart but they would not allow me to buy it even though it did not say “excluding travel size” on the coupons 🙁

  7. So what you are saying is that we should go through our local ads first to see what is on sale, then go through our coupons to match what we have in order to see what will be the cheapest price (if not for free or near free)? Am I correct? I am new to this and tried this at Target with the new Optic Colgate on Saturday. The toothpaste was 2.49 on sale. I had a .50 off manufacturer coupon and then I had a $1.00 off coupon from Target; that made it a 1.00

  8. Just went to Wal-Mart tonight and got the Tide Travel Size for .97 and used a 1.00 off coupon!! Love it when I can get paid to shop!

  9. This is REALLY good info. I never paid attention to the ANY size thing on coupons and I wasn’t aware that some stores would pay an overage. I used the BIC coupons at target yesterday and got my first free items. I was so nervous but it worked.

  10. Fantastic info! I love that I can now buy name brand items for less than store brand! Thank you guys for all your efforts…it really is making a difference!

  11. your right the best deal is t aklways get the smallest size when you have a coupn hwever i have waited for some good sales and gotten bigger sizes for cheaper too……..

  12. This is really good information about stockpiling. I really liked the discussion about switching brands, and getting the item or items for a low cost or even free! I love getting stuff free!

  13. Wow, I always wondered what to do with those $1 off Tide coupons! Gonna get me some travel size at Walmart next week! I also agree with trying out new brands and getting them for a great price. Thanks!

  14. Thanks for the info on product size. I would never think to get travel size or smallest size but it definitely makes sense.

  15. I agree, if it’s free then there really is no risk (financially) to try new brands! I tried Mitchum deodorant when it was on sale this year at Walgreens, for example. I got two and thought, “hey, this will last me awhile and didn’t cost much at all!” Turns out, it’s not for me. I don’t like the texture or the smell, but it was worth a try 😉

  16. I am starting to pay a lot more attention to the size. I use to be a faithful Costco shopper. I started couponing in April and haven’t been back to Costco since. I am teaching my mother-in-law. She has gone to Costco a few times but not nearly as much as before. Your site helps me save money during these tight, tight times. Thank you!

  17. I shop at Walmart a lot for the trial sizes, to get the overage. Only problem with that is, they need to stock more often. I find the trial sizes empty a lot (the ones with coupons out for them). My Walmart didn’t restock the schick razors when that $6 coupon came out until last week! (I checked in everyday and mostly at night WHILE they were stocking. Also I didn’t see any on their pallets.) Booo wish they would stock more.

  18. I love my mother in law so much for getting me coupons. she delivers the paper here. the girls at her work save me coupons so i asked them this week for 10-20 extra p&g’s because i need laundry detergent. I can go to the dollar general here when they are running the sales for the $5 off $25 and I can get the small boxes of tide powder for 4.99 or 5.99 (i cant remember) with a $2 off coupon. I always buy my laundry detergent there!

    I like to organize my coupons by using one of those clutches with the individual pockets inside.. i think its called a coupon clutch idk. Not for everyone but it works for me. I keep the front pouch empty and as I am shopping I put the coupons I will use at checkout right upfront.

  19. I love to stockpile, being a single mom of 2 special needs kids that are a hand full. I love getting great coupons such as this Tide $2/1. Great savings all the way on great product. The must important thing is to get the coupons as quick as possible, keep all coupons organized in a box or binder. and look for the best store specials and offers.

  20. I love reading everyone’s hints and tips on these sites. Thanks to everyone that posts, I’ve been able to start a small stockpile of free to near free items such as soap/body wash, toothpaste, and laundry detergent 🙂 (not to mention saving 50% or more on an average shopping trip!)

  21. My Mom has always used Tide, but now that I am on my own I look for the better deals. I can’t wait to get my hand on this coupon though, I miss Tide.

  22. I took your coupon class last year and I think the #1 tip I took away was paying attention to the wording and sizing. I never knew about the travel size Tide for example and how to get it for free, but I do now and LOVE it! I am also becoming less stringent about brand loyalty. My loyalty is to my families budget and few things taste better than free/next to free! Thanks so much for all you do!!!

  23. Thanks for all the helpful tips! I’m just starting and you have helped me so much already. Thank You!

  24. I was very brand loyal until I started couponing. Nothing works better than free. I am also able to donate a lot more now. It is an addiction.

  25. I like tide but the only way I can get it is with coupons. And with my family of 5 we have a lot of washing going on here.

  26. Thanks so much for all the great information! I’m new to all this & never imagined how much money you can save with just a little extra work!

  27. I was also used to “stocking up” with the big sizes–it’s amazing how much money I am saving with the smaller sizes and coupons!

  28. I was one of those people who always bought the large size because the unit cost was lower…now, after a year of couponing, I know better!

  29. thanks for the tips! I use to stock up on the large sizes but recently realized that smaller ones save me more and can make me a little money 🙂 Thank you!

  30. I have tried this idea, I do worry though eventually the companies will catch on and start putting excludes trial and travel size as many have started as well as have the coupon off of 2 items. I was doing the cascade deal for a while using the $1.00 off any 1 cascase on the trial size for 97Cents, but then it seemed like they changed it to off of 2 and this past P and G cascade wasnt even in.

    1. I have noticed that too!! I will be sad when my free trial size stockpile of Cascade action packs is depleted!! that stuff works great and they probably won’t offer that coupon anymore:( their last one was for .50 off, not as good as $1.00 off!!!

  31. thanks for the help. I really need to start stockpiling as our income keeps dropping. Keep up the good work.

  32. This isn a great time of year to stock up on things…especially laundry detergent. With five people in our house this would make things easier!

  33. I am new to this and would love to start my own little stockpile s d this is some great tips! Thank you!!!

  34. Living in Texas those Tide coupons are great since we pay tax on the after coupon price, but for my sister in California, she still has to pay the .08 tax, which isn’t a particularly good price for a load of laundry. So glad I coupon in Texas!

  35. I like the idea of purchasing something new and a smaller size with a high value coupon. I just wish our stores honored overage, but they don’t so I have to aim for the item that is on sale that I have a coupon for. I still come out good in the end 🙂

  36. Thanks for the tips I can use all of them I can get. My disability doesn’t go that far so any help is appreciated!

  37. Interesting article. I had a cashier act disgusted when I used a 1.00 Tide coupon on a one-load size. She asked why I didn’t buy a big one and get much more. I explained that this was free, and I could send it to college with my son for his laundry. Tide runs too expensive for me usually, so I get something I can use for free.

  38. Thanks so much for the tips! I was one of those people who always bought the bigger size because I thought I was getting more but now after couponing for a couple of months I know I was wrong!!! I am slowly learning more and more! Thanks again!

  39. Thank goodness for coupons and those (like you) who know how to find the best deals with them… and who share it with us. I used to think that clubs like Sam’s and Costo would give me the best deal by volume, little did I know that with a little research and some coupons- I could get things for free or nearly free. 🙂 Not to mention, branching out from your brand loyalty to new items may give you a great deal with your coupons- you may find a new product that you love even more than what you thought you couldn’t do without.

  40. I’ve learned a lot about using coupons with no size restrictions and have also learned that brand loyalty doesn’t matter when you are trying to save money for your family.

  41. This article was good info for sure. I’m slowly learning, new at couponing. My laundry soap is getting low, now seems like a good time to try to get some on my shelves.

  42. Great article. Very simple and informative which makes it easy for newbies like me. lol. I do agree with you that couponing is a good way and reason to try new products. I too, have found some cheaper name brand products to be just as good while at the same time saving me money.

  43. I need to by the smaller sizes. I have been in the bad habit of buying larger size to get a lower per unit cost. Thanks for sharing your knowlege

  44. Thanks!, It makes sense you buy the smaller size you get overage so you can stockpile. I still have plenty of Cascade , very good deal.

  45. thanks for the article , i have been learning so much from you site, i have always bought the largest size and shopped the big box stores, you have given me a hole new way of keeping the family stocked and being able to stretch the budget, thank you!

  46. LOVE LOVE LOVE this site!!! I’m getting better and better at this with help from y’all! My family and I thank you!!

  47. I have done the same thing … buy the biggest and save now I know I can get freebies with no size restrictions! This is great with a Husband deployed to Afghanistan as we cant send full sized products! Thanks!!!

  48. I am learning to stockpile. I love getting advice for all. I buy stuff that is on sale with a coupon, but now I want it almost free even if it is a smaller size.

  49. I try to explain this to my father that thinks Costco is the best deal cause its BIG. Still working on it 3 yrs later.

  50. this makes a lot of sense!! I always thought that buying bigger is better but I can see now how buying smaller packs saves more. Thanks for the tip!! you make learning to coupon easier and easier:)

  51. i love love love getting travel sized items for free. i went to my walmart and wrote down all the items they have in the travel section!!

  52. I always shopped thinking buy the bigger and get the better deal…thanks to reading ur wonderful educational posts and blog…I have found some awesome deals 🙂 Looking more at the big picture…Thanks for all u do!!!

  53. These are all really good tips. We are brand loyal but I am slowly changing that, fighting my husband every step of the way! (:

  54. Love this post. I’ve already won the brand-name battle in my house, but I’ve been trying to teach my parents to coupon and they are so brand loyal it’s scary! I’m definitely showing this post!

  55. like you we made the decision to try different brands. I am able to shop on base where the price is much cheaper than most of the stores around here, and not too many places double but have other strict couponing rules. We always bought peter pan but I saw I coupons for Skippy and we tried it and liked it as well. Another one was shampoo/conditioner. For a while I had bought salon shampoo, and then decided to give herbal esscences a try and it just as well on my hair. I figured this weekend with the tide overage coupon I can work this deal on my Shampoo: I intend on purchasing 2 shampoo and 2 conditions, that brings the total to 11.36. There will be a $1.00 off coupon in the paper for the herbal essences so that will bring the total down to: $7.36 and after the tide over I’ll pay just 3.24 but I also have several other coupons that will give overage and that will bring the total to: $3.15. I can’t believe I did not start couponing earlier than I did because I can see how much money I wasted by not couponing.

    Although the commissary usually has cheaper prices I’ve been price matching at walmart to the Aldi’s ad here lately to get our milk for $1.99. Which has saved us alot of money because I have two kids under the age of two who love their milk 🙂

  56. This is great information! I used to think that the more bulk products the less money you were spending. I am still trying to get my husband to buy into not being brand loyal.

  57. I suppose I am kind of brand loyal for some things….but I am going to try out others now if it means that I can save several dollars. I like being able to use my coupons on trial sizes or the small sizes of products when I can. Thanks for the tips.
    bekki1820cb at gmail dot com

  58. These are great tips. It took me a while to figure out that I didn’t have to buy everything in the largest size to get the best deals!

  59. I am a new couponer and have been on your site nearly every day for the last 4 weeks. Thank you for all of your work and allowing me to share in your savings!

  60. I am brand loyal to Pamper Diapers as they are the only ones that do not give a rash to my daughter. I try to stockpile them whenever I can!

  61. I love your site and will not go shopping until I check to see the various sale from the different stores. I sometimes copy and paste then e-mail my friend. Very educational and addictive.

  62. Great information….good things to know. I work at Kroger so get a small discount on store brand items….I always remember to take this into account because sometimes even with a coupon, it;s cheaper to buy the store brand.

  63. I never thought this way until I started couponing and what you say above really makes sense. No more Costco sizes for us. The smaller sizes are way better! 🙂

  64. The idea of size vs. price is always an issue with me. Trying to explain it to others was a problem. WELL SAID! thank you!

  65. I loved your tips. Like many of the others, I would like to learn to not always buy the larger sizes, thinking that I am getting a better deal and being loyal to a brand. I reluctantly tried Dove Men+ Care bodywash once because it was free. It is now my husband’s favorite brand of bodywash, and I would have never tried it if we didn’t get the deal. Thanks for your suggestions.

  66. I LOVE your website. I just recently started couponing last month and am ECSTATIC with how much money I’ve saved!! I never thought about getting the “smaller or trial size” products because I, like you, just compared price per unit. But I guess if you have enough coupons, it’s best to get it for free or with overage!! I am now going to start doing that! Thanks for all the great tips!! Keep them coming!!

  67. My step daughter is leaving for college this summer, and I am trying to get some things stocked up for her, tide travel packets is one of the things I am stocking up on!

  68. It’s been hard to step out of my comfort zone changing brands but your site has helped me to make the conversion!!

  69. A recent life change has caused me to begin couponing out of necessity. I have only been clipping coupons for products and brands that I currently use. I never considered the fact that I could me missing out on great deals and free offers. Thanks for all the great info. I love this site!

  70. I think a couponer’s first habit they have to break is brand loyalty. We have recently been put on a tighter budget than what we used to be. That’s when I started couponing. Once I threw brand loyalty out the window the stockpile started growing!

  71. The one brand I am loyal to is Cover Girl so you know i stocked up with the $8/2 last month. Got 2 years worth of make up for less than $10!

  72. I just started couponing in August and since then i have gained a very nice stockpile. I tell all my friends too that they need to think about not being brand loyal because 50 cents or less is always best!

  73. I would love to win those coupons. With my hubby laid off now it would really help. I am helping a friend who needs a ton of help start using coupons also. My goal is to get the most for the least. Sometimes I am paid to walk out of stores with my stuff via electronic bucks or rewards. COUPONS ROCK.

  74. I have always gone for the biggest size. Thanks for helping me see the light!!! I have also been pretty loyal to certain brands but I am willing to try!

  75. couponing has encouraged me not to be brand loyal and to by the smallest size that the coupon will allow. love your web site!

  76. I have always been a gain person, but for free I would love to try out tide. I would like some information on getting coupons that i need in bulk please???

  77. I stock up if the item us free or $1 or less regardless of brand!!! It’s so nice not having to buy toiletry items because I need themniw, I only buy when there’s a good deal because of my stockpile!!

  78. I’m glad to get all of your helpful hints, especially the tips on purchasing Tide. Love all the information you share to help us save money! I appreciate all of your hard work to keep us informed! Thanks!!!

  79. love the single load tides. My daughter can now do her own laundry without using too much detergent this was a great way to teach her

  80. I read the article and learned that buying the smallest sizes are often the better deal. Thanks for the lesson! I really appreciate it. Now, if I can just get those coupons… 🙂

  81. We were always brand specific with everything we ever bought. Now we use anything that’s cheap or free and honestly we have found other brands we like better!

  82. I debate whether to do trial sizes with overage vs. getting another size all the time when it’s something I use a lot of, like laundry oap.

  83. I always struggle with which size to buy. Buy the trial for free and run out before a new coupon comes out or use it on a larger size and come oop? Decisions, decisions!

  84. There comes a point where those little trial sizes become annoying. I’m happy with near-free but more normal sizes.

  85. Thanks for the tip on getting the overage on the Tide $2 coupon. NEVER would have thought of it. You all are awesome!! thanks again

  86. Thanks for all the info. You all are saving me so much money and with 4 girls aged four and under I need all the tips I can get! Thanks!

  87. Love this post. it really helped me out alot since i am new to the coupon world. this coupon would really help my start my stock pile~~

  88. I love when I am able to use a coupon on a travel size and get it for free. A lot of times I have make care packages for soldiers or even tornado victims in my area during storm season.

  89. I love this article… it is so important for couponers. I have walked out of the grocery store a number of times saving a large amount of money BUT… my brag fest came when I went to Walmart and they paid me $20 to walk out the door with items that I will use on a daily basis because of couponing and purchasing trial size items.

    At this point I only have ONE brand loyalty… I won’t name… but I am still using coupons to purchase it. Everything else is fair game in my world.

    Couponing has not only saved us money… it has introduced our family to new things that we otherwise would not have tried 🙂

  90. I have never been a loyal couponer but my daughter reclmmended your site. I have had stock piles mainly on paper and cleaning products simply because as an ICU RN and single mom, it made sense. Here is my biggest stock pile item. I am following the $10/week trial as suggested here. I picked up $12 bottles of fabric softener this weekend for .99!. My husband was tickled to death. Only problem is I have to spend another $9.01. I am heading to the Dollar Store with my $1.00 off toothpaste coupons next.
    Thank you so much for your helpful hints.
    Lorrie
    Vero Beach, FL

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