The day after Thanksgiving (Black Friday) is one of the biggest shopping days of the year in the United States. Stores offer crazy deals. Then people get up at ridiculous hours and wait in monstrous lines to take advantage of those deals. How does anyone navigate all of the insanity? Unless you are a dedicated Black Friday Shopper you might not have any idea. Have no fear! Today we are going to offer you a few tips for success on Black Friday shopping this year.
1. Start early
The biggest piece of advice that I can give you for this holiday is to start early. Just like any other major holiday the promotions associated with Black Friday are beginning to leak outside of that specific day. Many businesses are offering deals long before Black Friday. For that reason it is in your best interest to start hunting now. The sooner you can snag that particular goodie the better. As the actual day arrives some stores might start to run out of certain products. Ordering in advance guarantees that you will get exactly what you want. Meaning, you don’t get to the front of a line only to find out that the thing you waited hours for is gone.
2. Try out ecommerce
No, I’m not talking about Cyber Monday. In light of the year that we have been having many stores have beefed up their online presence. Because of how well online shopping has been going so far, many stores have begun to lean heavily on it. They are offering deals for Black Friday that involve free delivery or curbside pick up. If you are a person who likes to avoid crowds and make life as simple as possible it is worth taking a look at online deals and skipping the brick and mortar stores almost entirely.
3. Use loyalty programs
Oftentimes, being a loyal customer pays off big time. Many stores have begun sending out promotional offers (sales, coupons, rewards) for loyal customers. If you have a store that you frequently shop at take a look at those junk emails. It is possible that being a rewards member can give you access to exclusive discounts or early deals. Loyalty programs might also give you access to perks like in-store pick up or discounted shipping if that is not already being offered with the deal. Scroll through your spam folder. Set up alerts. You never know where you might see a hot deal.
4. Create a Budget and Stick to it
Before you start shopping you need to create a budget. This might sound obvious but it is one of the most important things to remember when you are Black Friday Shopping. It is easy to get caught up in the excitement and pressure that comes with the limited time deals of Black Friday. When this happens many people end up with impulse purchases that they didn’t need or spending money that they didn’t have. Setting a budget can help you to avoid this unnecessary spending.
5. Be Prepared!
One of the best ways to get the most out of your Black Friday shopping is to come in with a plan. Along with setting a budget you should have an idea of the purchases that will be the best deals for you. Outside of actually looking at the purchases that you want to make you should be aware of the store policies. What are the policies on layaway purchases? Are there store credit cards that you can use to get even more discounts? Do you need to pay those purchases off quickly to keep those discounts? I can also be helpful to know if there is limited stock of items that you are interested in. What will the store do if they run out of stock?
Further, if you plan to go into stores rather than just online shopping you should be aware of how busy each store is. Knowing when the stores are the most full and hectic means you can avoid those pesky crowds. Using apps like CrowdAlerts can help you to see where the lines are the longest. Maybe you want to send someone to wait in the checkout line as soon as you get into the store. Maybe you want to avoid that store altogether. Knowing how many people are in that area can be a big benefit to planning out your day.
I hope these tips help you! Happy Shopping!