An accordion folder is used for the storage and organization of files and documents. What sets it apart from other folders is the fact that its sides are pleated, which therefore allows it to be expanded. It also typically offers a cord to close it, and this gives accordion folders more security than a standard folder. As such, we recommend using these folders whenever you need to organize more than a few important papers.
Benefits of using accordion folders for print organization
There is a wealth of benefits that you can reap if you choose an accordion folder when it’s time to organize your printouts. For example, an accordion folder offers many different inside slots, so you can carry all your invoices and shipping receipts. Some of the other benefits include:
- Packaging and arranging documents – Offers the ability to create an entire package of materials, including promotional items and digital multimedia materials, therefore making a presentation much easier.
- Speaking for your brand – The outside of an accordion folder provides a lot of room for customization. You can have your company’s logo, contact information, hours of operation, etc. placed on the outside.
- Holds everything important – You want your clients to hold onto your information, and that’s exactly what will happen when you give them an accordion folder filled with important details.
- Protects and holds the essentials – Accordion folders have an obvious advantage over standard folders. Not only can they hold your essential paperwork, but they can also keep flash drives, CDs, etc. in their pockets.
Creative ways to use accordion folders for organizing different documents
Let’s say that you’re using your accordion folder to keep your invoices organized. What’s the best way to do this? Well, there are actually several different methods that can work, so it’s really up to you! However, the following methods have been used successfully many, many times.
1. Organize by due date
If you have difficulty ensuring you pay all your bills in a timely manner, why not organize your accordion folder by due date? You can mark the sections inside the folder to indicate the first of the month all the way through the last of the month. Then, as your bills come in, organize them by date. This should make it much easier to pay for everything on time.
2. Organize everything chronologically
Things will keep changing over time, and it’s a good idea to keep a record of everything. By organizing your accordion folder chronologically, you can easily look into the past to determine where your changes happened. As a bonus, this makes it super easy to go back to a previous version of the project, if necessary.
3. Organize everything by priority level
It’s the beginning of the week, and you’ve got a lot of work to get done. So much, in fact, that it’s almost overwhelming. Instead of working your way through the weeds, you can use an accordion folder to organize everything by its priority level. This will ensure you complete your highest-priority projects first.
4. Organize things by their physical location
Perhaps you’re putting an accordion folder together that relates to where everything is kept. An example would be keeping your files split across two different locations. You could keep everything from one location in one folder (named East or 1), and keep the other location in a second folder (named West or 2).
5. Organize files by client name
Are you putting together a file of every client’s contract? To make it easier, why not organize it by your client’s last name or the name of their company? When one of your clients calls with a question, you’ll be glad you did as it will become much easier to quickly locate the answer.
Tips for maintaining and organizing accordion folders
The most important tip we can give you is to ensure you’ve organized your folders in a way that would make immediate sense to someone who picked them up. The same thing can be said whether you’re using a folder for business or personal reasons.
Using the example of your invoices or bills, we suggest that you:
- Use a different folder for each type of bill (food, clothing, utilities, personal, grocery, etc.).
- Log the information in a monthly budget tracker.
- Use a new accordion file folder for each month’s bills.
When you organize and maintain your bills in this way, it’ll be easy to see what’s due each month. Using this to fill in a budget tracker will give you a quick overview of where your money is going each month.
You could also use an accordion folder to keep your warranty documents properly maintained and in order. Separate the inner files by room (kitchen appliances in the kitchen area, etc.), then place the warranty documents in the appropriate area. That way, if you ever need your documents, you’ll be able to find them super quickly.
Types of accordion file folders and their uses
Although one specific type of file folder probably comes to mind, there is actually a wide range of accordion folders such as:
- ½” – This relatively small folder can hold a surprising amount. It’s best used by students or businesses that need to keep a smaller number of papers together.
- ¾” – This folder has a surprising amount of space and allows you to separate your papers by category. This is best used by professionals.
- 1” – Designed to hold a large number of papers. Best for professionals and students who need to transport them in a suitcase or bag.
- 1-1/2” – Can carry extensive paperwork. Despite being larger than a 1” accordion folder, they can still be carried in a suitcase or bag.
- 1-3/4” – This folder has reinforced sides and a durable cover, making it better for long-term projects. Can still be transported in a bag or suitcase.
- 2” – Can hold a substantial amount of paperwork. At the same time, it can be easily transported in a suitcase or bag.
- 3” – Allows you to separate your paperwork into different several different categories but can still be placed inside your bag or suitcase.
- 3-1/2” – This accordion file folder can help you make sense out of a huge mess of paperwork.
- 5-1/4” – With an extra durable cover and reinforced sides, this huge folder can organize all your paperwork.
- 7” – This is the folder most people think of when the term ‘accordion folder’ comes up. You can hold the paperwork for a colossal project and carry it by hand.
The best brands of accordion folders
When you truly need the best of the best, check out these accordion folders!
1. Amazon Basics Expanding File Organizer
This is a ¼” folder that can accommodate up to 400 pages! It also includes reinforced top gussets.
2. Sooez 13 Pocket Expanding Folder
You can fit 2,000 pages into this accordion folder print holder. Even better, it’s made from waterproof and tear-resistant materials.
3. Five Star 6-Pocket Expanding Folder
The bungee cord closer means your paperwork will remain safe. With six pockets, it’s also perfect for students.
4. Accordion File Organizer 13-Pocket Expanding Folder
There are 13 pockets to place items in, yet this option also has a slim design for easy transportation.
5. Maimis Expanding File Folder
You can store a plethora of files with this 24-pocket folder. It’s ideal for using at the office, school, home, and travel.
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Author: Craig Sheer
Craig Sheer is the owner of Sheer Print Solutions, located in New York City & Portchester, NY.
We are the proven leader for affordable, high-quality Digital and Offset, and Large Format Printing in NYC. Sheer Printing Solutions is your single source for solutions to all your printing, binding, warehousing and fulfillment needs.