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and actually use your coupons for clothing stores before they expire.
More on that in a few.
First, before doing so, I make sure to keep the coupons I get in my organizer.
One of my ways to organize paper clutter (or paper before it turns into clutter) is to keep any paper coupons, bills, notes and other random pieces of paper in a special organizer that I use every day.
This is the exact 8-Pocket Project Organizer I use.
I first started using it to organize student work when I taught in a classroom but then adapted it to my own personal daily planner. I use it to make sure I attend to important papers on a regular basis. Each pocket is labeled with a day of the week on it. I go into more detail about it here.
Why Google Calendar Couponing is Important
If you’re ready to overcome that “I just can’t coupon” attitude and spend less every time you shop, check out my simple system for getting more for your money when you shop at clothing stores or other chain stores (not grocery stores) by using Google Calendar.
Using Google Calendar is a great way to remember to coupon, reap timely savings and plan your shopping trip by just checking your email. You can set it up in minutes without having to have a big binder with a billion pages or categories. It’s a no-brainer for your couponing success.
So whether you’re a newbie at spending less or part of the cool couponing club, I put together a simple system that you can use with all of your future shopping trips for clothes and other sporadic shopping adventures.
So you go and grab your coupons and pop them in your organizer.
Here’s exactly what I do:
1. I gather all of the clothing store coupons in my organizer. I knew I wouldn’t have time to touch them until the weekend so I put all of the coupons and promos in the pocket labeled Saturday. I put them there as a temporary holding spot until I enter them on Google Calendar.
If I put them away in a separate spot or try to just cram them into my special wallet for rewards cards and loyalty programs without even knowing the dates of the offers, I would probably forget about them all together. By using the organizer, I will get to them because it’s part of my daily routine.
This method I’m about to show you works well for other stores that you don’t have to go to weekly. It serves as a reminder to use the coupons you intended to in order to reap the savings within a certain time frame.
2. Go to Google Calendar. You need to have a Gmail account to access this.
3. Click the icon that looks like nine squares to access Google Calendar after signing into Gmail.
4. Then click the blue calendar icon on the lower right corner.
5. Unless your entering something for the current week, click on the word “month” in the top right part of the screen.
If you need to go to the next month, click the arrow (see below) to go to the coming months.
6. Then click the day on the calendar where you want to enter a promo or coupon.
7. Click the day on the calendar when the promotion begins. A box will pop up so you can type in what it is you have to remember. There you can enter a reminder in the “what” section. That will eventually appear in your email subject line when you set it up and receive the reminder in your email. It will also be located on the actual calendar.
8. Write a brief description in that box. I like to enter a title with the 3 W’s. Write a short line answering Where, What and When. Use all of them in one line. In this example, “Old Navy” answers where. “Coupon” is the what and the duration of the promo, “Sept. 2-8th” is the when.
9. Once finished, you can either push “create event” to just have that line be the reminder in your email which take a lot less time to set up or you can add details to the description box when you push “edit event”.
This option also allows you to put a date range. So if you have a coupon that is only good between Sept 2-8. You type that in as well so the reminder doesn’t stop after the first day. You can choose how often you can be reminded too.
If you opt to “edit event”, once you customize things the way you like them, click the red rectangular “save” button at the top.
Then prepare to be reminded in your email so you don’t forget to use the coupons.
10. Once all of the coupons are entered, I recycle the promo cards and stash the coupons in my wallet. I keep them in a separate wallet that houses my clothing store coupons and loyalty cards. Be sure to tuck them away in a set location like this so you remember to use them.
The rule I follow is they don’t enter the wallet until they go on the calendar unless I can use them in a day or two and have already planned a shopping trip. I make sure that my wallet is always in my purse so I never leave the coupons at home. This saves time by avoiding putting them somewhere else and then getting them when you need to shop. Mine are always waiting for me in my purse.
Also, before you forget, make sure to secure a future discount at certain stores every time you shop. I reveal a sure-fire way to get a coupon every time I shop at Old Navy or Gap plus how to organize your rewards cards and loyalty cards here.
The Bottom Line
You don’t have to do anything extreme or time consuming to coupon on a regular basis. If you take a few minutes to get organized using Google Calendar, you can plan your shopping trips and spend less at clothing stores. This helps you to be efficient and actually remember to use your coupons. Happy couponing!