I am not much of a couponer. I do get the Sunday paper and I go through the ads, looking for coupons that I might be able to use. However, I realized most of grocery shopping is for fresh fruit and vegetables and fresh meat or seafood. For the non-perishables, I lean toward store brands. So for our family right now, couponing has not been a huge savings for us.
However, I do shop online! I’ve noticed that a lot of the store I frequent in the malls, have a better clearance section online. I check ebates before buying anything online. This year, as of July 2011, I have received over $100 back. Victoria’s Secret, Sephora and DSW are on ebates and you can stack coupons on top of the cash back too!
I have also used ebates to save on hotel rooms and rental cars. Just a quick note, while ebates does a really good job of providing you with coupon or discount codes, you might also want to check out the actual website for additional savings. I came across one such saving for a hotel stay when I checked out their discount page, did not find one that applied and accidentally closed the screen and received a pop up message, offering me an additional $10 off my stay! I grabbed that coupon code and was able to save even more!
So for basic instructions on how ebates works, go to the ebates website first. Log in (the log in button for existing customers is small and sometimes difficult to see) and in the upper right hand corner, there is a search function. Search for your store and then use that link to go to the website. Do NOT go to the website directly as ebates will not be able to track your order! If you save your order to pay at a later time, go back to the site using ebates. You want to make sure you get credit for the cashback on your order and ebates needs to be able to track you properly!