How I Earn Cash Back On Generic Brand Groceries Without Coupons

This post contains a referral code to Ibotta’s free cash back app. Signing up through my referral code will result in bonus earnings for me, but is not required.

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I’ve tried clipping coupons, and the truth is couponing overwhelms me. Spending hours matching coupons with the latest sales papers, clipping all those coupons, and lugging around a huge binder every time I go to the grocery store…

Couponing just isn’t for me!

I may be inclined to reevaluate my relationship with couponing if I thought I was actually saving money, but honestly, I always feel like I’m spending more money just to use those coupons. Subscriptions to newspapers I’ll never read, printer ink, printer paper…it all adds up quickly.

Sure, it’s great when you can stack coupons and match deals to get something for free or almost free, but that doesn’t happen very often with the brands I buy. I find I can usually purchase a generic brand at a cheaper price than the more expensive brand with a coupon.

If you don’t use coupons, how do you save?

Just because I don’t like to coupon doesn’t mean I don’t want to save money. I do shop for certain items during sales, price match, and use discount stores to purchase a lot of my grocery items. I have also developed a love for programs that provide cash back on products I already buy.

Ibotta is my grocery shopping bff!

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Ibotta is a free shopping app available to both Android and iPhone users that pays you to shop! Yes, that’s right. You earn money for your purchases without clipping coupons, and without lugging that coupon binder to the store! All you have to do is sign up for a free account, choose a store, and choose your offers.

How do you earn?

Ibotta will offer to pay you for tasks you unlock for each item you want to add to your shopping list. The tasks are super simple such as answering a survey question, reading a recipe, or watching a short (usually less than 30 second) video. After unlocking items just head to the store, purchase the items, and scan your receipt into the Ibotta app. It’s that simple.

There are also extra bonuses and sweepstakes entries that can be earned from redeeming specific offers or amounts. For example, right now you are entered for a chance to win the $500 May Flowers Sweepstakes just by redeeming $2 in rebates by Sunday, May 24th!

You can earn even more by inviting friends to join your team and cashing in offers towards team bonuses!

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Once you have accumulated $10 in your account (it adds up quickly!) you can cash out to Paypal or choose from a ton of gift card options.

But what if I buy generic brands?

What makes Ibotta so great and unique is the number of “any brand” offers available. Coupons for generic brands, meats, etc, are super rare, but Ibotta has weekly deals for “any brand” items you most likely already purchase.

Want the proof? You’ve got it!

During my last 2 grocery trips to Ingles I decided to document exactly what I got cash back on. I didn’t even open my Ibotta app and activate a single offer until after my shopping trips were finished. This way I didn’t feel compelled to purchase items that weren’t already on my shopping list. A majority of my Ibotta cash back items were generic brands, and all “name brand” items were either on sale or something we’re brand specific about such as peanut butter.

Here are my results.

Week 1:

I earned $2.10 cash back and finished the “Roses are Red Bonus” earning an entry into the $500 May Flowers Sweepstakes.

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Week 2:

I earned $4.50 cash back and finished the “Violets are Blue Bonus” earning an entry into the $500 May Flowers Sweepstakes.

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I didn’t get half my groceries free or earn a fortune using Ibotta, but I’m okay with that. I earning something for my purchases, and it didn’t involve wasting hours clipping coupons and planning a shopping trip…hours I would much rather spend with my family!

Do you use Ibotta or similar programs? Would you rather participate in cash back programs, coupon, or combine both? Share your strategies with us in the comments below.

And if you’re new to Ibotta, feel free to become my Ibotta team member so we can work together to earn teamwork bonuses each month. You can join my team by signing up through my referral code here.