Are you among the millions of shoppers who help to make Walmart a global success story? With earnings of around $35k per MINUTE, the company is definitely a shopper’s hub. In a single year, it takes in around $485 billion (yes, billion). That means that people head there for many products and for the company’s amazing deals and prices.
They are not only a “big box” store though. They are, actually, the world’s largest retailer, and you can save a lot of money on almost any regular expense. After all, they offer consumers:
- A full-service website with a staggering range of departments and the option for non-Walmart vendors to sell through the site.
- An affiliate program – This is a feature that has all of the tools and resources you need to create effective and customized campaigns. They even break it down into bestsellers, rollback items, special buys and more to ensure you get the most out of your affiliate work.
- Super Walmart locations that feature full-blown grocery stores within standard Walmart stores (with free grocery pickup at many locations).
- Specialty shops such as autos and tires, wedding shops, and more.
- In-store dining from national chain restaurants that allows you to enjoy full meals at a fraction of the usual price, and which comes with regular discounts and deals.
- Pharmacy and wellness services. It is well known that Walmart’s pricing is the most competitive and they have worked to make their services complete and easy. You can manage everything online, and they have one of the largest inventories of $4 generic prescription medications.
- Registry services.
- A trade in program that rewards you with gift cards for certain electronics. This is an amazing way to get the most of your interaction with Walmart. It lets you turn in tablets, video games, GPS units, cell phones and MP3 players. You just enter the make and model at the site and get an offer for the unit. You receive a prepaid label that lets you send it in via FedEx. When the device is received, you get an eGift card for the amount agreed on, and you can use it immediately.
- Photo services.
- Box subscription programs.
And in every single department, prices are often the lowest you will find in the entire marketplace. So, whether you are filling the pantry shelves or looking for some snow boots or a lawnmower, it is likely that you find the best deals at Walmart.
If you are not a big fan of global corporations and have made a point of dodging the store, you may want to reconsider. There are even more ways that Walmart shoppers can save money and enjoy some of the most impressive returns on that decision.
Let’s start with the methods that tie directly to Walmart itself and then a few surprisingly easy tricks that net you even more savings on every dollar spent.
Unlike many other large-scale establishments, Walmart offers most of its customers the opportunity to get the best pricing through a price matching program. While it is not in effect in all parts of the U.S., for the most part, shoppers can get a price adjustment or refund of the difference of an authentically lower priced product.
So, let’s say you buy a specific make and model of coffee maker at Walmart and two weeks later it appears in the same store or that of a competitor at a lower price. If that product meets the terms (i.e. it is not on Clearance or past the return date, etc.) they give you the difference.
This really boosts the power of comparison shopping, but also works as a nice safety net if you want to be sure you get the best deals.
NOTE: Sometimes you will find that a product listed at Walmart.com is actually less than the price you would pay at your local store. If you find this, don’t fuss and bother with a price matching request. Instead, just order it online and use the free “in-store pickup” option rather than a paid delivery. You get the best pricing no matter what!
And it also works within the Walmart Savings Catcher app.
Walmart Savings Catcher App
For those who are regular shoppers at Walmart (whether online or in the local stores), it is likely that you have a list of items you typically purchase. This can be as simple as your home’s paper goods or as comprehensive as the weekly groceries, all of your clothing, and more. This is why you will want to use the Walmart Savings Catcher app.
It is part of the Walmart app and you use it by making your purchases at Walmart and then scanning your receipt. The app then looks for the pricing on the items you purchased, and it scours your entire location (using GPS on your phone). If it finds the exact item bought at a competitor’s store for less – it simply sends the difference to a Walmart eGift card.
It also works online at Walmart.com. You just login to your account and use the Savings Catcher tab. Enter the code on your receipt and it looks up the sale, scours the local stores for lower advertised pricing and sends any money owed to an eGift card.
You can use the app to monitor how much you have earned or saved using the Savings Catcher feature, and you can spend it online or in a store using your mobile device or a printout of your eGift card.
So, you don’t even need to comparison shop on a lot of the items you regularly buy because the Walmart Savings Catcher app is going to catch the difference and give it to you in your Walmart.com account.
Ibotta supplies you with cash back on purchases through app only rebates on many common items. The way it works is simple: you complete a few simple tasks associated with different items, and once done (such as watching a one-minute video), you get the rebate added to your account. Whenever you shop at Walmart, just scan the receipt into the Ibotta app and it tags the items that you get rebates on and adds that money to your PayPal account within two business days.
SavingStar is a grocery-oriented site but has a lot of products available through Walmart. Unlike Ibotta, you don’t have to do a thing to get the funds. Instead, you just scan your receipt when done shopping (or link a loyalty card to the app) and when you have received $5 in rebates, it is deposited into your PayPal account.
Other, similar apps to add to your device and use with Walmart purchases include Checkout51, Coupons.com, and ShopSavvy. In fact, the latter is really important if you want to make the very most out of your Walmart Price Matching opportunities. This is because it actually shows the actual price match within the current flyer or advertisement you need to get that match. If you are going into a Walmart to get the price match done, this app can save a lot of time and effort.
Though these “other” apps can work anywhere, with Walmart’s price matching program and deeply discounted pricing in general, you are going to save a lot of money by using these apps for rebates, cash back and coupons.
Use a Walmart Money Card
Typically, prepaid debit cards do not come with any rewards or bonus options, yet a visit to walmartmoneycard com will show you that the new Walmart MoneyCard has a tremendous range of benefits – including cash back and rewards options.
Those who qualify for the card get:
- 3% cash back at Walmart.com
- 2% cash back at Murphy USA and Walmart fuel stations
- 1% cash back at Walmart stores
- Free direct deposit up to two days earlier than normal
- Monthly giveaways just for cardholders, including $1k in cash and nearly 400 other prizes.
- No monthly fee if you keep $1k in your account
- Free money transfers and savings
- Checks can be purchased to use with the account
- Low $5 per month fee on balances less than $1k
- All PIN-based transactions are free
- Cash withdrawals in Walmart stores are free
- Free online bill pay
- $.70 money orders (less than all banks)
- MoneyCard Vault is a free savings feature.NOTE: This is a great way get more chances at those monthly giveaways because for each dollar you deposit into your MoneyCard Vault, you get another shot at monthly prizes. You can get up to 500 entries every month, and any cash awards go right into the Vault.
While you can use it anywhere, the best benefits come from using it exclusively in Walmart stores, online and for gas purchases. You can enjoy their “3.2.1. rewards” on almost everything, adding to the savings you have already learned about above.
Other Walmart Financial Services
There is also the Walmart credit card, which operates like a standard credit account. However, most account holders enjoy a bonus at the time they open the account (such as $35 deposited into their account). They also have the same benefits as the MoneyCard accounts, including the 3.2.1. rewards. There is no annual fee for this account.
Among Walmart’s other financial products – and yet another way to save money by working exclusively with the store – is their Bluebird card. This is something that gives you the benefits of banking, but without any of the fees. It is a financial account, not a traditional bank account. It has free direct deposit options, online and mobile bill pay, free ATM access at all MoneyPass ATMs, mobile deposit into a checking account, and a special SetAside savings account option. There are also no foreign exchange fees and many of the fraud protections you find in banks are included.
Essentially, by opting for a Bluebird account and having payroll direct deposited, you are getting all of the benefits of everyday bank accounts without the punitive fees that can add up so quickly on a weekly and annual basis. Even nicer is that it has a simple savings feature to help you develop a nest egg effortlessly.
If you don’t want an account similar to a traditional bank account (which limits your options for rewards and cash back) Walmart has low cost check cashing services, too. For $3-$6 you can have your payroll or other checks cashed immediately.
So, if you have yet to create an account at Walmart.com, that is your first step. From there you can add the Walmart app and be sure you get familiar with the Walmart Savings Catcher area. Install the rebate apps we recommended, and consider getting the Walmart MoneyCard at walmartmoneycard com, or even getting the credit card. Keep in mind that the Walmart MoneyCard is the best way to make purchases, get rewards and cash back and pay no interest. This is because it is the pre-paid card that can be reloaded for free via direct deposit or simple, affordable $3 refills from linked banking accounts.
Be sure you pay attention to prices of your most commonly purchased goods and use the Walmart Savings Catcher to get any refunds due, and create shopping lists in the app to make things even easier. You can even pay through the app using Walmart Pay, ensuring you maintain full control over the savings and cash back rewards you enjoy from your weekly shopping ventures.