There are alot of ways to organize coupons. If you tend to be one who takes just a few coupons with you to the store in hopes to find a great deal then a small purse sized coupon organizer might be for you. These are usually about the size of your wallet and fit nicely in your purse! The one pictured below actually attaches to your shopping cart. You can usually find these types at the dollar stores or walmart.
One popular coupon organizing technique is the large 3 ring binder. Some people prefer not to cut their Sunday paper insert coupons out until they are ready to go shopping and they’ll cut out only the ones they need. It’s easy to find them if you use a coupon database online and label each insert with a Black marker specifying the date on the front of each insert. That way if the database says $1/1 coupon from the 3-14 SS insert, you can go to that insert, locate the coupon, and cut it out.
*I will say that in my experience I missed out on alot of deals by doing that technique. I’d find things on sale or clearance unexpectedly and then didn’t have those coupons with me because they were filed away with the other inserts and not already cut out!!
A more popular technique with the 3 ring binder is to go ahead and cut all of your coupons out and then use baseball card holder plastic sheets to hold and categorize your coupons inside the binder. You can use the file sheets with the tabs to categorize each section and then file your coupons in each category you want to use. These binders usually look something like this one below:
A less popular technique is a file box with alphabetized index cards. I personally have tried all the other methods and I LOVE this one!! It works best for me. You have to have the right sized box in order for this method to work to your advantage. I was at a coupon class taught by The Savvy Steward (Annie Shaw). She had showed this method using Creative Memories photo boxes with index cards. I bought one because I love to try anything new when it comes to organization. This box saved my coupon life!!! My personal box pictured below: Thanks Annie!
I have the index cards alphabetized A-Z and a few odd ones too. “Today”…this one is where all my coupons go when I’m making my shopping list. ”CVS/WAGS”…this is where all my CVS ECB’s and Walgreens RR’s go. “RainChecks”…this is where all my rainchecks go obviously! “Trade”…all the coupons I’m willing to trade or give away go in this section. The way that I alphabetize is by brand name. Pillsbury goes in the P’s. Stayfree goes in the S’s, and so on. I have room in the back for my calculator and other things like pens and misc. stuff.
Now, I did find that my box started busting at the seams…not literally, but it was getting awfully full. I do personally cut all my coupons out every week…sometimes I get behind though, like right now!! So, since I still had my big pink 3 ring binder from the previous method, I use it to keep other coupons in. It still had all the baseball card plastic inserts, so I use it to keep a bunch of other misc. coupons that I’m not sure I’ll use. I also use it to keep my receipts, rebate forms, and other couponing paraphernalia in.
Of all the techniques, I really do prefer the box method over anything else. BUT…just because it works for me doesn’t mean it’ll work for you! You may have to try 2 or 3 different methods before you find what works best for you. The binder for me was just heavy and awkward to carry around and I felt like I was forever flipping through pages!!
I have one of the CVS Green shopping Bags. These are found up front by the checkout and only cost $0.99. I usually put my box inside my green bag to carry it inside Kroger, CVS, and Walgreens…or any other store for that matter!
After reading about all of these methods, try whichever one you think will suit your needs most. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask!!! I don’t want someone wondering and never asking! Organization is usually the key to being successful at SMART shopping. I will say however, that some people can work PURE MAGIC inside of unorganized messes….hahaha. We all usually have a method to our madness, right?!