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If you’re serious about couponing, the money you save could end up equaling the income you’d get from a part-time job. If you’re really serious, couponing could even become a job in itself. That’s what some dedicated couponers have discovered, as they managed to turn couponing into a career.

For Diana Boyce of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, it all started when she tried to share her couponing tips with friends – and found that few of them had the time or inclination to take to couponing like she had. “They really wanted to save the money but didn’t grasp it like I did,” she told Coupons in the News. “That’s when I decided to help them save money by doing it for them.”

And a business was born. Boyce launched “The Perfect Price” earlier this year, marketing her couponing and shopping services to the general public. Anyone interested in saving time and money, can hire her to do their shopping – and their couponing.

Boyce meets with her clients to determine their needs, and to get a sense of what items they purchase regularly. Then she looks out for deals and coupons that can help her purchase those items for less than what her customers would pay themselves. Most of her clients still do their own regular day-to-day grocery shopping, but Boyce helps them stock up on items that she knows she can get a good deal on.

And when she spots a good deal, Boyce goes shopping – often for several clients at once. “I have been at checkout with two or three overflowing carts!” she said.

Boyce charges her clients for the cost of the items, plus 35% of the total savings. So the more she saves her clients, the bigger her fee – a clever business model, befitting the business student that she is. Boyce is currently pursuing a degree in business management, and hopes The Perfect Price can become a full-time pursuit once she’s done with school.

For Stacey Conklin of Park City, Utah, being a professional shopper and couponer is already a full-time pursuit. She launched her own business last year, primarily to serve the many visitors who come to her mountain resort city each winter. Those visitors found they needed to stock their ski chalets, but didn’t want to spend any of their valuable vacation time grocery shopping.

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So several personal shopping businesses sprung up in the area. But Conklin said many of them charge big bucks, corresponding to their well-heeled clients’ deep pockets. And just because these visitors can afford to pay a premium, she thought, doesn’t make it right. “Why don’t we thank them for being here,” she told Coupons in the News, “and give them the best price on the best products that we can?”

And out of that came Stacey’s Grocery Services. “As an extreme couponer, I understand the value and importance of saving as much money as I can,” her website states. “I try to instill that same philosophy in my company.”

Though she now says “I don’t like the ‘extreme couponer’ name – I prefer ‘coupon ninja’,” Conklin is a longtime couponer who considers herself “a terrible teacher, but a great doer.” Saving money on groceries “was really easy for me,” she said, so “I wanted to show everyone what I do.”

Now she, together with a team of shoppers she’s recruited, show Park City visitors what they can do on a regular basis. Conklin informs clients what items are on sale at local stores, what she has coupons for, and what local products they might enjoy. Then the clients provide a shopping list, and she and her team head out with their coupon binders looking to get everything on the list at the best possible price. Customers are notified right on their receipts, how much Stacey’s Grocery Services saved them with coupons and deals.

She’ll even throw in some freebies on request – toiletries, personal care products and other items she acquires for free with coupons – sharing the wealth instead of hoarding all of the freebies for herself. Why? “I strongly believe in coupon karma,” she explained.

Both Conklin and Boyce are firm believers in couponing to save money for their own families. The fact that they can now save money for others, and get paid for it too, is the best possible combination. To be sure, there are other couponers out there who do some personal shopping and help save money for friends and family, but few have managed to turn the pursuit into a full-fledged business.

After seeing these women’s success stories – perhaps now, more of them will.

Image source: Flickr/Melissa Hillier

6 Comments

  1. A lot of people living in poverty stricken area’s, and work. Yet they struggle to buy groceries. They’ve had a balances diet a while, but try to balance it through within a month. Outcome, effects there health, outlook on daily life, there future, as well as there state of being. I urge these couponers, shop for these people once in while.

  2. This is great! Thank you!

  3. Haters in the comments!!! lol

  4. i think this is a great story and motivational great jobs ladies you should get paid for your services

    • “Reselling Stockpiles. Coupons are intended to give individual consumers a good deal, not provide a method for people to set up unauthorized grocery stores or flea markets in their garages, basements or backyards. Such sales usually violate the terms and conditions of the coupons themselves and may be in violation of local health codes. As a consumer, do you really want to buy a product that has been stored in a stranger’s basement for weeks, months or even years?”

  5. This doesn’t seem right. It feels like it is pushing couponing rules. Esp when they get “paid” for it.

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