Your moisturiser is your coat. It's your protection and 'cushion' from the elements. Of course it's important - and yes, you can find moisturisers that contain all sorts of lovely wonderful things such as peptides, retinols and other active ingredients, but those ingredients will generally work better for you in a serum where they can more freely penetrate and get to work while your moisturiser stands guard.
There is absolutely no point in buying the latest 'wonder' cream if you've done no prep work. If you spend a fair amount of cash on your cleansing routine - to include acid toners - and a bit more on a serum, you can get away with saving your pennies on a moisturiser.
There are of course, as with anything in life, exceptions. If you are 40+ it would be worth using a high-tech moisturiser alongside your serum that also contains the actives found in your serum. Attack it from all angles by all means.
If you are on a tight budget spend what money you do have on exfoliating acids and a good serum - and you can get away with cheaper cleansers and moisturisers.
How much time do you spend choosing your coat in the morning compared to picking your outfit?
Your cleanse-tone-serum routine is your outfit. Put the work in and you'll see the results.
Just don't forget your coat.