Low and middle-income earners have made dollar stores one of their sites of attraction and by this, dollar stores are becoming more important amid vendors. If you are searching for “dollar store near me”, then you have come to the right place. We have a handy zip code search tool to enable you to find local dollar stores nearest to you. Provided in this article are the best deals at dollar stores as well.
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What is a Dollar Store?
The dollar store is a term that is mostly used for stores that sell products at one dollar price or less. Each and everything that has to do with daily use products are much less at a dollar store.
What can I buy at a Dollar Store?
Some products available for sale are:
- food and produce
- cleaning supplies
- clothes like pairs of jean
- crockery products
- office supplies
- personal hygiene
- motor and bikes
- recorded media
Dollar stores have categories in which they are specialized, they are wholesale sales and retail sales. These stores we discovered in the early 20th century to minimize pressure or load of the sales clerk. Dollar store exists in different countries having different names like 99 cents store, euro store, pound store, and merchandise wholesale.
How does a Dollar Store earn money?
Here are a few ways dollar stores earn profit daily:
- They apply heavy discount prices on wholesale goods they purchase which in turn give them a small profit margin and later multiplied by the amount of wholesale.
- The process at dollar stores are involved maintaining prices that are slightly higher than other retailers and should in case the profit margin is not maintained by the help of fixed prices then there will be a reduction in the size of the packages to a smaller one.
- Wholesale is done mostly on products or items which are shipped in from most countries, especially from China by these dollar stores.
Most times, you can get easily carried away and may want to purchase everything at a dollar store. It is possible to get a couple of great deals at Family Dollar, Dollar General, and Dollar Tree.
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Get the Best Dollar-Store Deals
Dollar stores are not packed with weird off-brand and shoddy products as you may think. There has been a lot of changes at these dollar stores.
Let us give you an insight of what shopping experts and secret shoppers across the country discovered when they visited big-chain dollar stores like Family Dollar, Dollar Tree, and Dollar General:
#1 Dollar stores are fun and convenient
Have you ever been on a treasure hunt? Well, shopping in a dollar store is just like that. They carry an ever-changing and wide stock of goodies. Many of them are well designed and organized to get you in and out quickly. They also carry grocery staples like toilet paper, eggs, and bread.
#2 They will save you a bundle
Dollar General has been said to have the lowest price of many items after comparing the costs of 38 products people use daily. It came close or in most cases, beat Walmart, which has the best prices in our price scan. Another advantage Dollar General has is that they accept returns and coupons, unlike others.
You get to save more money if you purchase dollar-store brands. According to the last scan we had on prices, we discovered that you save big when you purchase store brands, but when it comes to low budget brands, no retailers come close to beating dollar stores.
America is going crazy for dollar stores. A survey was made on 1,500 women to get their opinion on dollar stores, and 76 percent of them said in the past year, they’d checked out a dollar store.
Dollar Stores Are the Best Place to Purchase Nonperishable Items
Over the last five years, dollar stores have been improving and rolling out new stores across the country. These days, they are also among the few growing retailers.
Four years ago, a price scan was carried out, and we discovered that dollar stores are a great place to purchase nonperishable like paper goods at bargain prices. (We didn’t inquire about the prices on food because to a high degree it was unavailable, particularly frozen and fresh products). A lot of dangerous products and no-name brands were discovered in our scan.
Items to Avoid at the Dollar Store
You should be on the lookout for unsafe and shoddy products as it sometimes is the case of some stores. The biggest chains like Family Dollar, Dollar Tree, Dollar General, and 99¢ Only are mainly focused on private label products and better-known brands at bargain prices. According to the representatives of the company we interviewed, close attention has been paid to quality and safety.
5 surprising things about dollar stores
Get ready to be surprised if you haven’t visited a dollar store lately.
#1: Most dollar stores sell products at different prices and not all of the products cost a dollar.
Dollar Tree sells products for a buck or less while 99¢ Only has its separate price which is for 99.99 cents. Dollar General, on the other hand, sells about 25 percent of goods in the store at $1 or less, according to Mary Winning Gordon the spokeswoman of the company.
The cost of most items is less than $10. There can be exceptions when it comes to seasonal or specialty goods like the $35 fan that was seen early in the summer or the $85 swimming pool, which is inflatable. Family Dollar is also way over the map.
#2: Dollar stores sell a lot of products with brand-name.
There has been a wide range of national brand selection and this has helped the shopping at dollar stores go mainstream. The CEO and president of Family Dollar, Michael Bloom said: “We were not relevant because whenever our customers were in our store, she was unable to complete her shop”.
Here you have an example of national brands that can be found at a dollar-store chain:
- The largest of the aisles at Dollar General are stocked with brands such as Tide, Hanes, Huggies, Hefty, and Folgers.
- Family Dollar, you can buy Maybelline, Pepsi, L’Oréal and Nabisco.
- Dollar Tree, you can purchase Daily Soap, Ajax, Scope, Reynold Wrap, and Softsoap and a host of others.
- 99¢ Only, they have organic food and gourmet sections and also pet, personal care, and other household items from Ajax, Colgate, Alpo, Whisk as Irish Spring, and other brands.
#3: Upscale shoppers are getting attracted by dollar stores.
Dollar General claims that its biggest customer group is from those who earn $70,000 and above per year. Gordon said, “Regardless of how much you make, every one of us wants to save money”.
Shoppers of different economic levels are being attracted by dollar stores according to our survey. 82% of those who make below $40,000 annually visited a dollar store, and the same goes for 75% of individuals who make within the range of $40,000 and $74,900, and about 68% of people earning $75,000 or above.
“People have been forced into our store by the economy,” said Bloom, who from drugstore giant CVS made it to Family Dollar. “Keeping them is all we have to do now.” One of the many ways in which dollar stores have done that in accession to beef up stock of national brands is by making the line of their private-label product develop.
A lot of shoppers have embraced the money-saving tactic of buying store brands. From our study, we discover that store brands do as well as big national brands and even better than them in some cases. You can also save money with store brands.
Two of the most significant dollar-store chains have launched their own labels. The launch is to compete with the likes of Equal at Walmart, Market Pantry at Target and Kirkland at Costco and also single supermarket lines.
Clover Valley is a recent line of 1,500 products from Dollar General. The products included are personal-care items, baby wipes, diapers, home housewares, Everpet pet food, office supplies, school supplies, and more. A line of prepackaged meals from Family Gourmet store-brand and other food are sold at Family Dollar.
#4: Compared to past safety is less of an issue.
In 2009, when we took some of our expert shopping, we found a lot of products that were worrisome on the shelves like expired bubble liquid packed in some kind of soda bottle, expired infant gas-relief drops, lighters that seemed like toys, fire catching tiki torches, and a lot kids’ items that were small enough to choke them.
This survey showed that Americans do not fully trust the safety or quality of some products from dollar stores. The reports we got from around 40% of shoppers was that they would never buy electronics products at a dollar store because of their safety concerns.
This is the image most big chains are looking to change today. They all have decals and safety info on their websites. Dollar Tree, Family Dollar, Dollar General post notices and track recalls on their sites.
When some stores trade closeouts, it does not inevitably mean they are of substandard quality, but rather it helps to lower the prices. Family Dollar and Dollar General only trade first-run items, which are mostly purchased from manufacturers directly. Bloom said, “we don’t buy products from the truck of cars, quality is one thing we take very seriously”.
It is not recommendable to buy vitamins that are off-branded from these stores. We tested multivitamins only to realize that the amount of nutrients we found does not tally with that listed on the label.
Be watchful of electrical items that are without UL labels, or those that are fake, to guarantee their safety (Substandard components such as undersize wiring can overheat and lead to a fire outbreak).
Whenever you purchase items like food or medication, always check for an expiration date. Also, if you must purchase party favors or toys for small kids, be certain they go through the toilet-paper-tube test: they will cause a child to choke if they fit through the tube.
#5: Getting in and out usually can take up to 10 minutes.
Most times, you can get sidetracked by products you don’t need or hit a big line at grocery stores. These small box retailers can serve as an easy route for midweek fill-ins being a suitable replacement for the trip to the drugstore, supermarket or convenience store.
If you probably want to quickly pick up a highlighter for your children’s project at school, some soap, and milk, you can rush in and out within 10 minutes but a dollar store won’t be suitable if you have to do a big weekly grocery shopping.
Faster shops are getting recognition from other retailers. Walmart Express, which is a smaller store of Walmart, is being tested and can be better amongst both worlds.
Store brand products are advantageous if you shop at dollar stores because you get to save 29 percent over national brands. It is much better than the amount saved for store brands from other retailers: 15 percent at Target, and 25 percent at supermarkets and Walmart.
Family Dollar and Dollar General now carry a lot of private label products. Taste testers rate their products to be as good as or better than name-brands. You can give it a try, and if you like them, you can save big.
We sent out shopping experts and secret shoppers to go across the United States to price 38 items including drinks, food, paper products, and other staples at two of the biggest dollar stores, Target, Walmart and supermarkets. After placing items on sale, supermarkets came top as the most expensive.
The lowest prices overall were Walmart, defeating the price of its competitors on 29 items on our list. Although Dollar General came close to matching Walmart on various items, it was the lowest on five items while Target was the lowest price on six.
We discovered that compared to Family Dollar, Dollar General overall had better prices.
Have you gone to a dollar store recently? Let us know in the comments!
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