Since starting this blog I have been contacted by readers many times with questions about couponing, Frugal Living, Walmart’s policies and procedures, and various other little things.  I figure if one person is wondering about it, there might be others so this will be an on-going feature to answer the most common questions that come up.  If you have a question, please check out the master list of Ask A Walmart Expert articles to see if your answer is there already or contact me and I’ll do what I can to help you out.

How Can You Tell If a Deal is a Good Deal?

I had a reader ask me this question a few days ago and it really put me back on my heels. I mean I know when a deal is good because I have been couponing for years.  It’s just a skill you pick up over time.  I know to never pay for toiletries, to wait until pasta sauce is around $.50 a jar, to look for dang-near free tuna, etc.  But what about the newbies?  You are standing in a Walmart, coupons in hand, ready to price match, but you still aren’t sure.  If only there was some quick and dirty way to know if it was a good deal.

Compare it to the Store Brand item

Here’s what you do.  Look for the store brand item comparable to what you are looking to buy.  (At Walmart the store brand is usually “Great Value”)  Compare your post-coupon, post-price match price to the store brand price. 

Is the Store Brand less?  Bad deal.  Put your coupons away and wait for a better price match opportunity.  If you need it now, buy the store brand.

Is the Store Brand the same?  Don’t stock up but buy a few items to get you through until the next sale.

Is the Store Brand a little more?  Still not a real good deal.  Buy a few but don’t stock up.

Is the Store Brand a LOT more?  Now you’ve got yourself a deal.  Buy as many as you can and stock up.

Hope that helps!