Couponing 101 – A 4 Step Guide

Bargain Bin Betty, coupons sourced for you!

Step 1:Sales Cycles & Stocking Up The majority of people make a list of groceries they need to buy and head out to the grocery store. What you’ve just done is made a shopping list of everything that isn’t on…

how to maximize savings with coupons

Step 1:Sales Cycles & Stocking Up

The majority of people make a list of groceries they need to buy and head out to the grocery store. What you’ve just done is made a shopping list of everything that isn’t on sale at your grocery store. To first understand how to maximize are savings we must realize that there is a pattern to when groceries go on sale and that they all have arock bottom low price“. To maximize savings we want to focus on only purchasing groceries when there at that rock bottom price.

Most grocery stores follow a standard 6 week sale cycle, something they really don’t want customers to know. When a product is on sale you want to purchase enough to last you 6 weeks this will allow you to never pay full price for a product. By taking advantage of this knowledge we can drastically increase are savings. Check out the diagram below which demonstrates this 6 week sale cycle.

sales cycles of grocery storesYou should create a list of the most commonly purchased items you buy and start keeping track of when you see them on sale.

Tip: start with a small list and grow it over a few months to make things easier. After several months you won’t even need the list anymore!

To get you started off on the right foot check out the weekly ad schedule I’ve posted. The weekly ad schedule tells you when  store release thier ads this should help you keep track of sales on a weekly basis.


Yesterday you learned about sales cycles and how to take advantage of them. If you missed this go to to catch up on what you’ve missed. For today I’ll teach you how to take advantage of these sale cycles with the printable coupons you’ve collected over the past month.

The most important step at this stage is to stay organised at this point you should have a list or items you commonly purchase and the quantity you will use over a six week period of each item. As you find coupons online make sure you print off enough to match the quantity of that item you’ve written down. For example if I use 6 jars of ragu pasta sauce in 6 weeks I want to print off 6 ragu coupons. Once printed store them in your coupon Binder. If you don’t have a coupon folder yet don’t worry we’ll show you how to make and organize one in the next email.

Once you find a product on your list that has come on sale it’s time to buy. Use your coupons and take advantage of the sale price to save the maximum amount off a product. Here’s how it works:

coupon stacking diagram

Step 3 : How To Create A Coupon Binder

Organize your coupons in either a folder or binder. I prefer the coupon binder method it does take more time but works better in my opinion especally if you are using both inserts and printable coupons.

Steps to Follow :

  1. Purchase a three ring three inch binder with a zipper either from your local store or online ( I bought mine from Amazon)how to make coupon binder
  2. Purchase several baseball card pages get these from any hobby shop or check out Amazon: Baseball card pack) to store your coupons in. You can also use sheet protectors or photo binder
  3. Next get yourself at least 20 stong plastic dividers to organize your pages into categories.

Use the dividers to organize your coupon book into categories. I’ve listed the categories I’ve used below:

  • Baby & Kids
  • Baking
  • Beverages
  • Cereal & Breakfast
  • Cleaning
  • Cosmetics
  • Condiments & Sauces
  • Dairy
  • Frozen
  • Meats
  • Medicine
  • Oral Care
  • Office & Misc.
  • Packaged and Canned Goods
  • Paper Goods
  • Personal Care
  • Pets
  • Produce
  • Snacks & Candy

You can change these categories if you like this is just an example of what I’ve used.

Now that your set up with your coupon binder clip out any coupons you find and insert them into the appropriate categories. Make sure to remove any expired coupons as you add new ones to your binder.

Remember there is no right way when it comes to organising coupons. You need to do what works best for you to learn more about coupon folders check out the post I’ve done “ How to build a coupon folder”

Step 4: Putting It All Together

Putting it All Together:

  1. Save all inserts from Sunday papers including the Smart Source and Red Plum inserts.
  2. Make sure you keep track of sale cycles using flyers from your local grocery store. Hint: start by only shopping at one grocery store this will make things easier. Check the Stores and Schedules for when flyers are released.
  3. Collect printable coupons online and check in with us at for new coupons we’ve posted each month. ( if your having trouble finding particular coupons let us know via our contact us page. I’ll do my best to find a printable coupon for you.)
  4. Write out the items you’ll buy, how much of each, and sale prices so you know exactly what your going to buy.
  5. Go Shopping have fun and don’t forget your coupon binder!


If you have any questions or comments please visit our Contact Us page I’d love to hear from you.


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