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How Canadians Can Save on Online Grocery Shopping

 

It might’ve been during your regular grocery shopping trip for this week’s meal prep. Or maybe it was when you were buying special ingredients for a new recipe you were excited to try. No matter what was on your list, chances are you’ve had the experience of getting to the cashier and being handed a bill that’s higher than anticipated.

 

While you can’t avoid food purchases (everyone has to eat!), there are some simple ways that Canadians can save. Many Canadian supermarkets and independent grocers are offering online grocery shopping, with convenient pickup and delivery options. Being able to fill a cart with a few clicks of a button isn’t just easy; it can also lead to savings. Here’s how.

November 5, 2020 in Benefits

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Sign up for e-coupons and e-flyers delivered straight to your inbox

The flyers and coupons that come in the mail or get dropped at your doorstep can be a source of great deals. The same concept applies when you’re grocery shopping online. Here are three ways to save.

It’s important to note that in-store discounts and pricing are not always available to online grocery shoppers, but many grocery store websites and delivery services have their own special deals. For instance, some offer coupons that are automatically applied to items in your virtual shopping cart. Others might post weekly specials or allow customers to refine their search to see only sale-priced products.

Watch for sale announcements

It’s important to note that in-store discounts and pricing are not always available to online grocery shoppers, but many grocery store websites and delivery services have their own special deals. For instance, some offer coupons that are automatically applied to items in your virtual shopping cart. Others might post weekly specials or allow customers to refine their search to see only sale-priced products.

Sign up for emails

Many grocery stores offer e-newsletters containing additional deals, coupons and, in some cases, offers that can be applied to online purchases. In order to take advantage of these savings, make sure to tag these emails as “safe sender” or “not spam” (or add the sender to your contacts list) so they don’t end up in your junk mail folder. Signing up for a few different newsletters or weekly e-flyers will help you find the best deals when grocery shopping online without having to browse multiple stores.

Download apps

Many supermarkets have their own apps, which might feature special offers. Some third-party apps can search multiple local flyers on specific grocery items. Just make sure that you can apply these savings to online orders.

Watch and minimize grocery shopping delivery fees

Home delivery is convenient, but there may be associated costs you have to budget for. Some online grocers charge a service fee, which can be a percentage of the total bill, while others may not and simply price online items slightly higher. In addition, online grocery shopping services will often add a delivery fee to your bill.

 

To help minimize these charges, plan ahead. It’s easy to visit a grocery store and leave with only one or two items, but when you’re grocery shopping online, consider buying multiple items at once. Many services require a minimum spend for delivery, and doing a large order rather than multiple small ones can be more cost-effective. Some services offer free delivery, or a reduced delivery charge, for purchases over a certain price point — yet another incentive to opt for larger orders. If you frequently use a specific online grocery shopping platform, look into membership options. Some retailers may have programs where customers can pay a set annual fee in order to get free, or reduced, delivery fees throughout the year.

Monitor and reduce grocery shopping pickup fees

In some cases, picking up an online grocery order at a store is free, while some retailers charge a minor pickup fee. Depending on the retailer, fees may fluctuate based on what time of day you go get your groceries (busier time slots may carry higher fees). Before completing your order, browse different dates and pickup times to pay the lowest possible fee or, if you can, choose a slot where the fee is waived.

 

Remember that some grocery stores (like rideshare apps) increase pickup fees when demand is higher, such as on weekends. Pay careful attention to your receipt at checkout and the costs indicated. When possible, place orders during off-peak hours or be flexible with your timing to avoid additional charges. Alternatively, use online grocery shopping options that offer flat fees, rather than prices that fluctuate based on when an order is placed.

Sign up for a credit card enrolled in a rewards program

One of the best ways to save on online grocery shopping is to use a credit card that offers rewards on food purchases. American Express CobaltTM Cardmembers earn 5 points for every $1 in eligible grocery purchases in Canada, up to $30,000 annually1 — including online grocery shopping and delivery. American Express Membership Rewards® points earned can be redeemed to pay for almost anything that you charge to your Card or used to Shop With Points on eligible purchases at Amazon.ca.

 

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