There are many methods for coupon organization. You will probably try several methods before you find the one that works best for you.
Many new to couponing start out with the envelope system
The coupon book
The accordian file
In all of these methods, the coupons are organized by category such as Frozen, Dairy, Health & Beauty. The advantage to all of these methods is that they are small. They fit inside your purse, tote or diaper bag. The disadvantages: 1. It is difficult to find the coupons that you need. You generally have to pull out all coupons in a section to find the needed coupon. 2. It does not take long to "grow out of it" because they do not hold many coupons.
You may want to start with a coupon box with index cards. These can still be rather small, but they will hold more coupons.
Once you are more advanced, you may decide that the coupon binder is the method that fits you better. The advantages to this method are:
1. Sub-categories (under the Health & Beauty category you can break down into Razors, Oral Care, First Aid, etc.)
2. You are able to see every coupon
3. Your pens, scissors, loyalty cards, calculator and weekly sales fliers can be kept inside the binder.
The disadvantage is:
The binder can be cumbersome and heavy to carry. . .especially once your make your way to the 3" binder.
If you decide to go the binder route, you could choose the Coupon Clutch which is basically a binder and tote in one. It is much easier to carry and much more attractive than a basic binder.
In each of the above methods of organizing coupons, you clip all coupons. In order to save yourself time and effort in clipping, use this method. Tear your inserts apart and lay like pages together. Staple the pages together at the top and bottom (avoiding the coupons themselves). This prevents the pages from slipping. Cut the coupons out and file.
The last method of organization is the expandable file. This is my preferred method. If you are totally unorganized or feel you do not have time to clip every coupon, use this method. Each week when you get your coupon inserts, you simply label the insert with the date and then file according to date.
The advantage is that you do not spend a lot of time cutting coupons that you may never use.
The disadvantage is it is large and cumbersome and it cannot be carried inside the store; however, you can keep the file in your car. In order to know what coupons are available and where they can be found, you can can staple a list from Taylor Town Preview that tells what coupons were included in each insert. As you use the coupons, you can draw a line through the entry on the list.
Even simpler, when you are at home and want to know what coupons are available for a product, you can check the ClipperGirl's Coupon Database.