How To Price Match

How To Handle Store Issues | Price Matching Etiquette

Are you new to couponing and price matching? It's really easy! First you need to make sure that you understand the store's policy. Wal-Mart is where I price match so that is the store we will talk about. But first you should read their policy.

Wal-Mart's Price Match Policy
Download a copy to put in your coupon binder.

We gladly match the price in the following types of ads:*

  • Buy one, get one free ads with a specified price
    • Example: Buy one for $2.49, get one free (BOGO)
  • Competitors' ads that feature a specific item for a specified price.
  • Preferred shopping card prices for specific items that are in a printed ad.
  • For fresh produce and meat items when the price is offered in the same unit type (lb. for lb.; each for each)

*The following are guidelines and limitations:

  • We will match any local competitor's advertised price.
  • We do not require customers to have the ad with them to honor a competitor's ad.
  • Items purchased must be identical to the ad (size, quantity, brand, flavor, color, etc.)

What they wont match:

We DO NOT match the price in the following types of competitor ads:

  • Items that require a separate purchase to get the ad price
    • example: "Buy [item A] to get [item B] for $C"
  • Items with no actual price that require a purchase to get free product
    • example: "Buy both [items A & B] to get [item C] for free"
  • Items that require a purchase to get a competitors' gift card
    • example: "Buy [item A] to get a $B gift card
  • Buy one, get one free (BOGO) ads with no actual price given
  • Going out of business or closeout prices
  • Percentage off
    • example: "All mascara, 40% off"
  • Competitors' private label price promotions

We do not honor:

  • Ads when the actual price for items cannot be determined.
  • Internet pricing
  • Misprinted ad prices of other retailers
  • "Going out of business" sales or "close out" prices

HOW TO: For a smooth and easy transaction you need to find a system that works for you.  This is how I do it.  You will need a copy of the report, some small stickers or Post-It notes and a pencil or pen.

1) Visit the online report and select the items you want to buy.  Using the My List option, print your report. (If you are not a subscriber, you will need to compare all the ads to find the best prices.)  You can also print the entire report if you like.

2) Go through your coupons and match up any coupons with items you are going to price match.  This is how to save the most money.   Get the coupons you are going to use and keep them separate from the others you may have, i.e. put them in the front of your coupon binder or in an envelope.  Write down the quantity of that item you plan to buy in the margin of the report.  If they don't have the item, or they don't have as many as you planned on buying just pull those coupons from the stack you are using. I usually wait to do this at the register. It just seems faster to go through them right before I give them to the cashier.

3) As you are shopping put the price match items to the back of the cart, i.e. closest to the handle. The regular price items go to the front of the cart.  Staying organized as you put them in the cart will save you tons of time at the register.

4) As I get the items off the shelf I write the price and the first letter of the store you are matching on a little sticker or Post-It note. (I find those little round stickers like you use for garage sale pricing work great and they are also cheap!)  If you are getting several of the same item, you only have to do this for one of each like product.  This makes it so much easier at check out!  Then double check the Wal-Mart price to see if the price listed is correct on the report. That way you can tally up your savings when you get home.  Adding up your savings is an important step! You may not feel that you saved much, but it really adds up! Plus I LOVE IT when you post your savings on our Facebook page!

5) At the register, place all your regular price items on the belt first.  Then place one of the divider bars down.  Let the cashier know that everything past the bar is price match items.  Place all like items together, sorted by variety, i.e. if you get several types of Cheerios, stack the Original together and then the Honey Nut together.  The cashier has to ring up each variety separate for inventory purposes.  Put the item that has the price match sticker at the front!  THE EASIER YOU MAKE IT FOR YOUR CASHIER, THE EASIER THEY WILL MAKE IT FOR YOU!  As an ex-cashier, I am speaking from experience!

6) I have found it helpful if I will stand to the left of the customer shelf, you know the one you put your purse or checkbook on. It makes it easier to see what item the cashier is on and you can tell what the prices are to make it faster.

7) Ask the cashier to press total so your pre-coupon total shows on your receipt. Give the cashier your coupons if using any! YES you can use a coupon on an item that you price matched!

8) THANK YOUR CASHIER!  You don't want her to hide from you next time she sees you in the store! haha

ITS THAT EASY! Since price matching has become more common cashiers are better trained on how to do it.  If another customer comes behind you when you first start your transaction, you can nicely tell them that it might be a few minutes because you have price match and coupons.  In my years of couponing and price matching I have only had one gentleman make a comment about it taking so long.  I nicely replied that if he wanted to pay me what I was going to save that day I would skip my coupons.  After he saw that I saved over $50.00 he quickly changed his attitude.  Most customers that get behind me are curious to see how much I am going to save.  I also get lots of questions from other customers.  It surprises me at how many customers don't realize that you can price match.

So give it a try!  Don't be nervous.  Start with just a few items until you get a system down that works for you.  Be sure to leave a comment on this blog or on my Facebook page to let me know how it went and to ask any questions!

7 thoughts on “How To Price Match

  1. Barbara Chapman

    I really appreciate you sharing your vast knowledge of price matching. I am new to it and your information has been very helpful and generous of you.
    Thank you so much!

  2. Jay

    Thank you for this! One question I have is can I combine multiple price match items in the same transaction on appliances? I found 3 appliances cheaper at Best Buy but Lowe’s offers to price match plus take an additional 10% off. Wondering if there is a limit to the number of price match items per transaction or not. Thanks!

    1. Rena Post author

      Price matching rules vary from store to store. I would call them and ask. I don’t know why they wouldn’t!

  3. mona robinson

    I use to love price matching & couponing at Walmart but the Walmart in mt town have new policies. Only 2 like coupons a day & only 2 like items can be priced matched a day. One more thing they changed from a 50 mile radius to a 30 mile radius for stores you can comp. not worth it any more. I still do it but no thrill like before. I wish all stores followed the internet rules.
    I do have a question, when you say 6-30 report is that the 1st or last day of the report? 6-30 was a Tuesday. Our store ads don’t start on a Tuesday. So it must be the ending date. So we are on 7-7 report now? right?
    Thanks for all the good work! I love organization and your report looks very organized!!! Mona


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