One of the first things you might notice when you start using coupons is that some products have coupons available all of the time. My favorite example of this is Pillsbury Biscuits. At any given time, there is almost definitely a couple of different coupons that you can use to buy Pillsbury Biscuits if you know where to look for them. Other items have sales that are seasonal, like hot dogs, buns, and condiments in the summer time and cranberries and stuffing mix in fall.

When you can predict how long it will be before an item goes on sale again, you can estimate how much you will need of that item for that time period. For example, my favorite brand of whole bean coffee is almost half off every two months. By buying a two-month supply when it’s on sale, I don’t have to buy any coffee for full price. When my stash is gone, it will be on sale again.

Sales cycles also mean saving money on things like clothes, holiday decorations, school supplies, and outdoor gear. These items all get significantly marked down at some point in the year. If you can plan ahead, you can pay a lot less by buying things a couple of seasons before you plan to use them.