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Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Secrets of Seasonal Sales


As a coupon'er/bargain shopper over 13 years, I've discovered (and you may have, too) that coupons and sales run in seasonal cycles. Here's a comprehensive guide to cracking the what and when is on sale. It may be a repeat for some, but I believe it is worth repeating. Hope it helps!

Seasonal Sales Cycles

JANUARY - Historically, Quaker has hot deals on cereal/all items. We see Pepsi/Tostitos go on sale mid-January (again, rebates abound for these). Other items of note this time of year are chili, side dishes, anything for hearty/warm meals.
• Post-Holiday Sales
• White Sales
• Sports and Weight Loss Equipment
• Computers
• Winter Apparel and Accessories
· Organizers, Rubbermaid totes, shelf organizers, planners, filing cabinets

FEBRUARY – many of the same food items as January
• Electronics
• Floor Coverings
• Housewares
• Furniture
• Candy and Chocolates

MARCH - Frozen food month. You'll find many stores are offering free freezers or fill-a-bag deals. Between March and April, look for spring cleaning deals, so many cleaner items will be on sale. With Easter, looks for eggs, ham, Kraft products to cycle into good sales. Paper products like towels, napkins, plates are starting to come on strong. Beverage items.
• Spring Apparel and Accessories
• Winter Sports Equipment
• Gardening Supplies
• Luggage

APRIL
• Spring Apparel and Accessories
• Coats and Hats
• Paint
• Wallpaper
• Jewish Foods and Eggs

MAY -
get ready for summer! Here come loads of deals on BBQ sauce, frozen veggies, baked beans, and condiments of all kinds, summer-time meats (ribs, hotdogs, and ground beef). Also with all the holidays, look for tons of paper goods that match the holiday and pick them up after clearance. These deals generally continue through September!
• White Sale - Linens and Towels
• Spring Cleaning Supplies
• Auto Maintenance
• Home Maintenance
• Sodas & Bottled Water, Hotdogs, Hamburger Meat, Condiments, Paper & Plastic plates & cups
* Raid/Off bug repellents and sunscreens

JUNE
• Summer Apparel and Accessories
• Pianos
• Television Sets
• Building Materials and Hardware
• Dairy Products

JULY
• Air Conditioners
• Summer Sports Equipment
• Sportswear
• Craft Supplies
• Sodas, Hotdogs, Hamburger Meat, Condiments

AUGUST
• White Sale - Linen and Towels
• BBQ and Patio Equipment
• Back to School Supplies
• Bathing Suits
• Fresh Fish and Vegetables
• Breakfast foods (Cold cereal-Juice-Waffles-etc)
• Cold lunch items for in lunch boxes

SEPTEMBER - back to school; time to fill up on snacks! Pudding cups, Capri suns, fruit snacks, cereal sales start up hard again, peanut butter/jelly. Also, like clockwork, there will be Prego coupons in August, and plan on getting lots and using them in a hurry before they expire in September when the spaghetti sauce goes on sale. Sauce wars between Ragu and Prego this month. Campbell’s soups will go on as well and there will be coupons in the end of August for these as well. Lunchables are on sale this time of year, too.
• Back to School Supplies and Apparel
• Gardening Supplies
• Housewares
• Bicycles
• Canned Goods

OCTOBER - Stock up on holiday foods – Stove Top, turkey, instant mashed potatoes, broth, cranberries, marshmallow, ice cream, pie shells, whipped cream, pudding. Look for great Kraft deals again this time of year. Piggyback those Kraft coupons when you can. Crackers are a biggie - going on for $1 or less a box. Lots of extra deals like $ off cheese WYB crackers. The real kicker is the after Christmas food deals! Save your coupons because pie fixings, fried onion, broth and canned green beans will be on deep discount. I got those onions for .50 a can, normally almost $4. These generally continue through December.
• Cars
• Houses
• Fishing Equipment
• Crystal, Silver, and Glassware
• Candy
· Baking/candy-making items (choc chips, sprinkles, vanilla, corn syrup, nuts, etc)

NOVEMBER -
• Winter Apparel and Accessories
• Quilts and Blankets
• Heating Devices
• Turkey, Sweet Potatoes
• Canned goods (soup, chicken broth, condensed milk, veggies etc)
• Baking goods

DECEMBER
• Toys
• Gift Items
• Party ware
• Post-Holiday Sales
• Party Foods, Baking Goods, and Various Meat
• Canned goods (broth, soups, etc)

Year-round after a holiday, you can always pick up cheap cookie dough and any food related to a holiday.

Continual sales are candy, popcorn, chips, anything snacky, cereal (heavier in the fall/winter, but still around in the spring).
Frozen food sales seem to centralize on a brand and the switch brands the next month. I think the manufacturers buy slot time for sales. So last month, Stouffers was on sale hard, now lean cuisine is. Save the entire frozen coupon and then keep checking back for the brand of the month.

Frozen pizzas go on sale in the fall and then again the spring; not often in the summer because people don't want to turn their ovens on in the summer.

By all means, this isn't everything that you can get on sale, but if you follow the cycle and stock up (I never buy BBQ sauce in the winter), then you can get where you have enough on hand and only need to refill when the items are in season. The result is that you spend less and less with each successful cycle.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Sources: Various numerous sites on the internet over years of time from an obsessive compulsive cpn-er

See PYP's forum of hints/helps for ideas and discussion.

4 comments:

Becky Chatwin said...

That was very helpful thank you!

Marne said...

Great post DeAnn!

Linda said...

This is an awesome post thanks a ton!

A Journey Through Choices said...

thanks this is super helpful! I'm a couponewbie and it's a little overwhelming at first. Ok, really new, my first serious couponing grocery trip was last weekend and I was elated! anyway, I love your blog so thanks

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