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Old 08-16-2007, 10:17 PM
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rianacj rianacj is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Utah County
Posts: 2,491
Default Coupon Binder Categories

I have had alot of requests in my PM for this information, so I decided to post it here:

About 4 months ago I began doing the coupon thing. I had no idea how to begin organizing my coupons! I was fortunate enough to be able to go to a class and I adopted the binder method that the teacher displayed. It is the best--I love it!

I went to WalMart and bought a binder for about $10. It zips shut, and has a few velcro pockets on the front, and slots where I keep pens, highlighters, etc. In the inside front cover, there is an accordian file with 5 slots. This is perfect for holding my weekly ads, which I OFTEN have to refer to while on my shopping trips. Along with the binder, I also bought tab dividers, 3x5 photo sheet protectors, and baseball card pages.

In the front of my binder, I have 5 tab dividers. One for each of 5 stores (I use Albies, Rite-Aid, Smith's, etc). In each of these store sections I have a 3x5 picture sheet protector (with slots for 3 pics). In these sheet protectors I hold rainchecks, catalinas, etc for that particular store. I also have baseball card holders in these sections. When I make my grocery list for that store, I pull out the applicable coupons and store them in there so they are all ready together when I go to checkout.

I also keep a section with my misc rebate forms, as well as a card holder page with my coupons for items that end up being free at WalMart--so that I don't have to rack my brain each time I run into WalMart for "just one item", and try to remember what other items I can get for free!

After the "store" section, I have tab dividers for each category. For each sub-category, I just wrote the sub-category on a small mailing address label and attached it to the side of the 1st sheet protector of that subcategory just to make it easier for me to find what I am looking for.

The categories and subcategories are as follows:

BABY(Diapers, wipes, snacks, baby food, formula)
BREAD/CEREAL (Cereal, granola bars, breakfast foods, breads, chips/crackers, rice/pasta)
CLEANERS(Floor cleaners, dish cleaners, laundry, bathroom, standard, air fresheners)
DAIRY(cheese, butter/oil, yogurt, misc. dairy)
DESSERT(cookies, frozen dessert, cake/brownie mix, fruit/jello/pudding, drinks, candy, baking goods)
MEAT (poultry, lunchmeat, seasonings/sauces, breakfast meat, misc. meat)
MEDICINE (cold/allergy, pain releivers, misc)-You could add more categories-these are the only ones I keep coupons for
MISC (Sauces/salsa/ketcup,canned goods, frozen goods, salads/dressing, Pets, misc foods, misc household)
PAPER GOODS (kleenex/garbage bags, plates/paper towels, toilet paper, foils/wraps/containers)
PERSONAL HYGIENE (Facial cleansers, Body Wash, Lotion, Toothbrushes, toothpaste, mouthwash, Deodorant, shaving, Makeup, hair care, misc hygiene)

As you can see, the categories are listed alphabetically. The subcategories are not, but I didn't realize this until I already had my binder put together, and I didn't want to redo it. If you wanted to alphabetize the subcategories, it would probably be easier to find your coupons! Each of these categories can definately be adapted to hold what coupons you personally use.

It may seem overwhelming at first, but once I had my binder ready to go, I was really excited to start getting my 5 Sunday papers and clip my coupons! It didn't take me long to get used to where to find each coupon.

I hope this helps someone out!
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Old 11-23-2007, 12:14 PM
RoseparkStar RoseparkStar is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Salt Lake City-West Valley
Posts: 4,714

The baseball sheets at Target are usually either in the toy section with the pokemon cards...or whever they have the stash of baseball/sports cards. At walmart they are in the office supply section.

There ARE 2 different companies that makes these that I know of for sure (my son collected pokemon cards for years). One brand is a bit more expensive but IMHO for sliding in and out alot of times--hold up better. The cheaper ones have a tendency to break apart a bit easier.

I discoverd this cause my "first run" of holders was full, was about to go and get more when we found the "cheaper" version ones. I notice they dont take rougher handling very well.
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Old 12-02-2007, 02:39 PM
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LazyBear LazyBear is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: In my den
Posts: 10,517
Default My method

Unfortunately there really isn't a lot of stores to choose from in my area, so I mostly shop at a single grocery store (Smith's).

My binder is organized by the Aisles/Rows in the store.

Example Smith's: (I've shopped at other Smith's and they have the same rows)
Row 1 - toilet tissue, paper products, foil, trash bags.
Row 2 - cleaning products, laundry, body soap.
Row 3 - Pet
and so on....
If the Row isn't labeled, I create my own label for that area.
Trial Sizes -
Health & Beauty Row 1, 2, etc.
Dairy Section -case 1-3, case 4-7, etc.
Fridge Wall - where the lunchmeats & cheese are located
Meat Wall - where the butcher counter is.
Deli Wall - where they sell Deli items and fried chicken
Bakery - Sara Lee products, Totillas, etc.
Organic - Energy Bars, Cascadian products, Imagine products
Produce - Nuts, Croutons, bottled juices and specials on produce items.
At the Cash Register - candy, gum, promo items, occasional deals on hanging stuff.

I find it's convenient to walk into my store and start at one end and move systematically throughout the entire store row by row. I have my rows memorized, so even if I shop at a different store - the order of my binder still provides the necessary quick references I need. The more you use a specific system, the easier it is to memorize.

Color code your labels or binder pages for quick reference.

Blue - Freezer section
Green - Produce
Golden Brown - Bakery
Dairy - White
Cheese & lunchmeats - Orange
Health & Beauty - Aqua (reminds me of a spa)
Pet - Dark Brown (you don't want to know why I chose that color)
Baby - Pastel Pink or Blue
Soup aisle - Red for Campbell's soup
Pasta aisle - light yellow

you get the idea!

Last edited by LazyBear; 02-28-2009 at 12:30 AM. Reason: updated info
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Old 12-06-2007, 01:57 PM
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mommyof4 mommyof4 is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 673

Funny thing. I set up my binder by isle as well. Except for the Albertsons here. Mainly b/c I shop there most often.
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Old 07-08-2008, 10:40 AM
utahdutchgal utahdutchgal is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Northern UT Cty
Posts: 86

Hello! I am new but I have been couponing for a while. I do the binder method but organize everything by alphabet. It is just easier for me to see a product in the store and go straight to the letter. There are somethings like Cereal that I will just put in the C section or toothbrushes in the T section. HTH
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Old 07-24-2008, 02:16 PM
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LazyBear LazyBear is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: In my den
Posts: 10,517

BC Walmart had some clear photos sleeves that work perfectly for larger coupons. Some sizes are 3 1/2" x 5" (3 pockets on a regular 8x10 page).
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Old 08-12-2008, 12:26 AM
breeze80 breeze80 is offline
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Join Date: May 2008
Location: Town of Sugar in a city of Salt
Posts: 25
Default Pictures Please?

I would love to see pictures of peoples binders and what they've done. In the OP the binder she described is the one I bought at Walmart for only 2.5o the other day! :} {which I was so excited about since I skipped over buying it at $5 lol}

anyways, I'm just trying to figure out the best way to go about this.

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Old 10-03-2008, 01:44 PM
SurpriseParty SurpriseParty is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 226
Default I found what works for me!

I wanted to share this idea incase others like me need a suggestion. I tried doing the baseball card holder inserts in my binder but found the slots were too small for a lot of my coupons and didn't want to have to sit and re-clip or fold my coupons and what-not to make them fit into those slots. So, I did some searching and found "3-Pocket Page Currency Pages" on Amazon which are PERFECT for me! The sheet is a standard 8 1/2 x 11 size with 3 slots (3 1/2 x 8 each), the slots are top loading and durable. One box of sheets costs about $20, but you get 100 sheets! I now have no problem fitting my coupons into the slots, I have labeled my slots, so for instance, I have one slot for toilet paper & put all my toilet paper coupons in one slot in order by expiration date. It is easy to take the coupons in and out, and I have a zipping binder so nothing falls out. This is working so well for me I just had to share!
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Old 11-12-2008, 08:36 PM
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rianacj rianacj is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Utah County
Posts: 2,491
Default I finally added pictures!


Laundry Lovin', Money Savin' , Deal Chasin', PYP Fan!
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Old 11-12-2008, 08:44 PM
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LazyBear LazyBear is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: In my den
Posts: 10,517

help! I can't see the expiration dates after I fold the coupons to fit the sleeve pockets.
LOL! I know how frustrating it can be for Newbie Binder Owners.
I hear complaints all the time. After they start using a few tricks, they relax.

1. fold the coupons to fit the binder pockets - so you see the value and some info.
I carry multiples, so the next steps apply only to the 1st coupon in the sleeve.
I will redeem all of the coupons that sit behind the 1st coupon, so there's no need to write the X-date on each coupon.

2. if the Expiration date (X-date) doesn't show- write it on an area that will show.

3. my code looks like this X3/31
it isn't necessary for other people to know what those markings mean.

4. a bright pen helps find X-dates quickly.
(I use an All-In-One pen - with 4 neon colored inks in it. Green-Pink-Blue-Orange)

5. I suggest buying varying sizes of sleeves for larger coupons.
Photo Album sleeves have 4-6 pockets per page.
Baseball card sleeves have 9 pockets per page.

I also mark coded comparison prices on some products I'm tracking.
If I'm at Walmart and see a decent price point on Tide, then I find my Tide coupon and mark it with 'my code'.
example: W457.....means Walmart $4.57
SM= Smith's
K = Kent's
SH = ShopKo
FD = Family Dollar
DG = Dollar General
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