If your monthly grocery budget is tight, then consider online grocery shopping! Below are six reasons why it’s been the key to grocery shopping on a budget.
A few years ago, my husband and I put together a monthly budget for our family. We review that budget every month and adjust as needed. Our budget allows us to buy just about anything we want, to pay cash for cars, to pay off our house quickly, etc.
But feeding a family of six on any grocery budget can seem impossible.
I’ve tried everything – couponing, big box stores, sale shopping…. everything. None of those frugal strategies seemed to work for me.
I never had enough time to find, collect, and plan coupons. Shopping at big box stores created wild swings in my grocery spending and I just couldn’t plan well for that. Shopping sales at various stores didn’t work either because the things I needed never seemed to be on sale.
How I Do Grocery Shopping on a Budget
So, how do I do grocery shopping on a budget? Online grocery shopping with curbside pickup. That’s it.
It’s simple, brilliant, and keeps me on budget every single week.
Before I had four kids I would easily have spent hours contentedly browsing my local grocery store or taking advantage of the various other departments at Walmart. But that was before I had four kids.
Now going to any store makes we want to scream, cry, and punch something all at the same time. Check out Katelyn’s tips here for grocery shopping with kids – they are priceless!
The online grocery shopping process is easy. The website and app interfaces are simple and work well. And the best part – I don’t actually have to walk into a grocery store.
I know there are several stores and other services that offer grocery services. I prefer Walmart Grocery. The pickup location is pretty close to my home, and their prices can’t be beat compared to the competition near me. I know this because I can even use Walmart Saving Catcher with Walmart Grocery orders.
For even more reasons to love Walmart Grocery, be sure to check out Katelyn’s post 11 Things You Need to Know About Walmart Grocery Pickup.
If you have a grocery store near you that offers online grocery shopping (check out this post for other online grocery shopping options), the steps below will work just as great for you, even if it isn’t Walmart.
There are six super easy steps to staying within my frugal monthly grocery budget.
6 Steps to Using Online Grocery Shopping to Keep You on a Monthly Grocery Budget
Step 1 – Shop all week long
I literally grocery shop all week long.
With the Walmart Grocery App on my phone, I can add stuff to my shopping cart all week.
Last night we realized that our sweet, four-month-old baby and our feisty two-year-old are both teething. Out came my phone and in went Orajel into my cart. I do this all week.
Whenever I notice we are out or nearly out of something, I pull out my phone and toss it in my cart. Then when I am ready to actually schedule my order I know I’m going to get everything that I need for my home.
Step 2 – I carry the store around with me as I shop
I just mentioned that I put stuff into my cart throughout the week. But there is a day that I sit down and plan out my grocery menu for the coming week (for me this is Friday night. Exciting, I know).
The first thing I do is walk into my pantry and take stock of what I need. With my phone in my hand and the online grocery shopping app open, I can add items as I go instead of making a list or trying to remember everything.
Next, I hit up the refrigerator with the same strategy, tossing things into my cart as I need them.
Step 3 – My favorites are always there
One of my very favorite aspects of the online grocery shopping experience, as well as the app, is the Favorites menu.
Everything I order is placed on my favorites menu so that it is easy to reorder in the future. This is especially necessary so that I can reorder foods I find that are safe for my third child who is allergic to nearly everything (I am not exaggerating here). So, I browse through my favorites list and add to my cart.
Step 4 – Menu planning and shopping all at the same time
I really love to cook. And I seriously love to bake. Almost as much as I love these two things, I love finding and trying new recipes.
Combining Pinterest with online grocery shopping is pure bliss. I can browse through recipes I want to try during the coming week, and I can put the items I need for those recipes into my shopping cart at the same time. I can’t describe it other than to say the ease of shopping this way through online grocery shopping is just heavenly.
Step 5 – No more impulse buying
Seriously, one of the very best parts of the online grocery shopping process is the chance to review my cart before I complete my purchase and remove stuff I don’t need (and really can’t fit in my monthly grocery budget).
No more impulse buying.
No getting sidetracked into crafts or toys or movies.
And no over buying.
If I only really need three yogurts for the week, I can’t be tempted to just buy the last two on the shelf because I don’t see the shelf. Trying to “edit my cart” while I am in the grocery store can be painful, embarrassing, and super time-consuming. Doing this in my cart online is simple. Grocery shopping on a budget is much easier when I shop online.
Step 6 – Easy to compare costs
I’ll be honest that I don’t do this one every week. Usually, this step is once a month or so.
Once I’ve filled my cart and I’ve edited my grocery list as needed for the monthly grocery budget and weekly menu, I open up two other browsers and cost compare with a big box store (I use Sam’s Club) and Amazon.
When I find items that are less expensive at those other retailers, I can either choose to purchase them from Walmart Grocery anyway or buy them right then from the other seller. It’s amazing.
No running all over town visiting multiple stores in order to cost compare. No guessing while I’m in Sam’s Club as to what a particular item might have cost the last time I purchased at Walmart. Easy peasy.
So, to sum it all up. Online grocery shopping with curbside pickup is amazing because I can shop for only what I need without extraneous spending. I can cost compare to ensure I’m getting the best deal. And I can plan ahead for meals. All from the comfort of my soft, well worn, recliner.
Don’t take my word for it, though. Try it by clicking here! You can get $10 off your first order of $50 or more!
What are your best tips for grocery shopping on a budget? Have you tried online grocery shopping in order to stick to your monthly grocery budget?
Check out this post for more ways to save on grocery without coupons.