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Couponing 101: The simple way to save big

Couponer Shannon Spence said she looks for two types of stackable discounts, store and manufacturer coupons.

INDIANAPOLIS — If time is money, Shannon Spence can earn around $150 an hour — in store savings, that is.

"I'm going to do a CVS haul," Spence said.

Before stepping foot in the store, her hunt for savings starts on the store app.

Spence said she looks for two types of stackable discounts, store and manufacturer coupons.

Then, she goes to her cashback apps, Ibotta and Fetch, which work like electronic rebates. 

Similar to coupons, Ibotta offers need to be selected before you check out.

"After the rebates, these [cereals] are going to be $0.99 apiece," Spence said. 

During her trip, Spence doesn't hope to save 10% or 20% on her bill, but more than 90% off.

And she succeeds, dropping her total from $180 to $45 with tax. 

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But the discounts don't stop at the register. 

To get the rebates, she uploads photos of her receipt to the cashback apps. 

"Once I got my rebates and cashback from the store, it ended up being $6.90 before tax," Spence said.

It's serious savings on name brand products that's helped cut her grocery budget in half. 

"I have all of that extra money that we are actually putting aside to save for a house," Spence said.

While Spence admits there's a trial-and-error process involved, there are resources, especially on social media. 

"Just reach out to somebody. There's a lot of people that coupon and just keep trying it because eventually you're going to understand it," Spence said.

Spence also saves money on household goods at other stores, including Walgreens and Target.

RELATED: Groceries are up almost 12%. Here's how to save money at the store

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