It’s the bargain-hunter’s busiest time of the year! With so many of us watching our spending these days, Black Friday has become almost as much of a holiday as Thanksgiving.
Here are some tips to help you find the best Black Friday deals, both online and in-store. And check out the last section of the article for some Black Friday ideas you might not normally think of!
Black Friday Shopping Online
If you don’t want to venture out into the cold and snow to shop at your favorite stores this Black Friday, you don’t have to. You might even find better deals by shopping online. In addition to looking for lower prices, look for free shipping, promo codes, and/or free in-store pickup.
Black Friday online shopping tips
- Don’t wait until Black Friday to start looking for deals on your target items. Now is the time to start comparison shopping online. Check prices on the specific items you want, and you may even want to write them down in a notebook or track them on a spreadsheet. As soon as possible, compare Black Friday ads now to see what the deals will be in the stores. It’s possible that you’ll get the same price or even better before then.
- Do look for promo codes throughout the shopping season. And expect free shipping or free in-store pickup.
- Buy a gift card with 4x fuel points and use that to shop online. (Read the fine print first, of course, to make sure you can use it online and there aren’t any fees or other “gotchas.”)
Bonus Tip: If you get a gift card or a little extra spending money this year? See how far you can make it stretch by shopping after-Christmas sales and promotions from stores like JC Penney.
Black Friday Shopping In-Store
Things have really changed in recent years when it comes to Black Friday shopping. Brick-and-mortar stores used to lure you in with the best-price-ever on a big-screen TV or an electric griddle, and you’d have to fight mobs of people just to get to those bargains. There are still some good in-store deals now, and the following tips still apply, but the sales aren’t all on Friday anymore!
Black Friday tips for shopping in-store
1. Go early. I mean really early. Stores usually have limited stock on the very best bargains. If you plan to linger over your morning coffee before you hit the Black Friday sales, you may as well wait until Saturday to do your shopping.
In fact, some major retailers will open in the evening on Thanksgiving, and even more will open this year at midnight Friday morning. So waiting until 4 a.m. on Friday is waiting too late to get the very best deals.
2. Start NOW comparing prices and features on products you have on your shopping list so that you’ll recognize a good deal when you see it.
The features of an item can make all the difference in whether or not it’s a deal at the advertised price. This is especially true for electronics, where a few gigabites or megapixels more or less can make a big difference in price.
It also applies to small kitchen appliances and large ones. Decide what you really want before you step foot into a store.
Research your products – know the difference between digital zoom and optical zoom when buying a digital camera, for instance.
3. Also, start now comparing the accessories that go with the games and electronics. If you just grab all the accessories and the batteries displayed next to Black Friday purchase, you may spend all your savings.
Instead, you may be able to use a coupon to buy batteries, or score a great deal on a memory card at a discount club. The accessories for the item may be cheaper online or at another store.
Other Black Friday Deals
At times we’ve seen some really neat Black Friday deals that surprised us. Museum memberships, amusement park tokens, tickets to shows, Groupon deals, and more. It can also be a really great time to sign up for any online course you’ve been considering.
Software and apps also often go on sale on Black Friday or Cyber Monday.
What are some other good Black Friday shopping tips you’ve discovered? Share your secrets (if you’re willing) and let us all know how to get the best deals!
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