How to Choose Store Brands
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How to Choose Store Brands

Posted on Tuesday, May 24th, 2011 at 12:12 pm
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Some store brand or private label products are better than others. Whether it is cost or quality, simply because something is not name brand does not mean that it is cheaper, nor does it mean that the store brand is an inferior product. Finding the balance between quality and cost can go a long way to saving you money on your grocery bill.

Why Buy Store Brands at All?

Shopping the store brands versus name brand products usually means that you will have a lower grocery bill. That is because most of the time, the store brand product is pretty much the same quality as a name brand product. You wind up paying a premium for all of the advertising and branding.

A friend of mine used to work for a pickle company and revealed that the factory put the same name brand pickles into a jar with a store brand label. There was no difference between the two.

The Best Time to By Store Brand Products

If you want to save money, then the best time to buy store brand products is when you don’t have grocery coupons for the name brand items, or if even with coupons, the generic food comes out cheaper. You’ll need to calculate the cost of your food after coupons in order to make the comparison.

Just as you might stockpile groceries when you find sale and coupon match ups, you may also find that store brand food can go on sale. When it does, go ahead and stock up. Keeping a price book of store brand prices can really help you identify the right time to buy.

Which Store Brands Are Better Than Others?

When it comes to choosing store brands instead of name brand products, it is usually a process of trial and error to see which groceries work best for our family. You can also do some research to see which store brand other people like. For example, the Walmart brand of toilet paper (bathroom tissue) consistently gets good reviews for its quality and price.

When first considering a store brand buy a single or small quantity to see how your family will like it before you commit to an investment of multiple quantities. Note that you may prefer different flavors or versions of a store brand, such as the vanilla ice cream instead of the chocolate ice cream or the plain “Cherrios” instead of the honey flavored ones.

Choosing store brands can be a smart choice that will contribute to lowering your grocery bill, and one of the strategies you can take when you need food but do not have the right coupons.

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Good Tip: Saving money is important – especially if you have a lot of expenses like bills to pay, loans to pay off, and all the other things that drain your bank account. Figuring out a way to save money can feel tedious to some, and like a punishment to others. U.S. News suggests that you try one of these money saving challenges. The “No Eating Out for a Month” Challenge This one is self-explanatory. The goal is to avoid eating out for an entire month. This might be super easy for people who enjoy making meals at home. People who really enjoy dining out, or ordering food to be sent to their home, may struggle with this one. It’s worth a try because spending money on take-out is more expensive than buying groceries. The Pantry Challenge This one is a variation of the “No Eating Out for a Month” challenge. The goal is to use up all of your groceries before you buy more. It forces you to try and remember why you bought a food or beverage that you don’t know what to do with, and gives you the opportunity to find a way to use it. The one exemption to this challenge is the foods that have expired. Don’t eat them! Throw them in the trash. The “No Spend” Challenge Make a goal to avoid spending money during an entire weekend. The only exemption in this challenge is that you are allowed to pay bills. This challenge is interesting because it requires creativity. You must be creative and find workarounds for problems that you would typically solve by spending money. You may have a different outlook on spending after finishing this challenge.