We may have missed out on some things in 2020, but finding great deals doesn’t have to be on that list! This year, I am looking forward to snuggling up with my laptop and staying home to shop. Because COVID has changed the retail landscape, many stores are starting their Black Friday deals NOW.
I hope this short list will help you gear up for your Black Friday and other holiday shopping!
1. Make a List and Do Your Homework
This sounds simple but it always helps me stay focused when it’s go time. I write down everyone I am shopping for and ideas next to each name, crossing them off as I go. Research items you are interested in by reading reviews and comparing products side by side. Click here for the free printable below.
2. Shop Early
Black Friday deals have kicked off earlier this year. In fact, Amazon started theirs on October 26th! It seems as if we will have a Cyber November in place of a Cyber Monday so act accordingly. There are many sites that have leaked early Black Friday ads such as BestBlackFriday, DealNews, TheBlackFriday, and GottaDeal.
“Shoppers who do all their purchasing before Black Friday are more likely to find items in stock, and they have the best chance of getting their purchases shipped in a timely fashion,” says Michael Bonebright, consumer analyst at comparison shopping site DealNews.com.
This is a great tip because shipping has been unpredictable this year, and many items have been in and out of stock (not that you will be giving a family member the gift of toilet paper, but you know what I mean). Pay extra close attention to the shipping estimates before you commit to buy this year—allow extra time.
3. Use Apps and Websites to Help You Track Items
There are plenty of shopping aids out there to help you snag the lowest price possible. One plug-in I found to add to Google Chrome is Honey. I am beyond excited about using it going into the holidays and beyond. It’s free and once added to your top toolbar, it will pop up when you are on a site they cover. It shows you price history and gives you the option to track it. Once you’ve added the item to your “droplist” to be tracked, alerts will pop up as the price drops. Another awesome feature of Honey is at checkout, it will run through a variety of coupons that you may not know even existed to drop your price even further. No more searching—it does it for you! Camel Camel Camel is another popular one that is very similar, but is specific to Amazon.
4. Join Deal-Finding Facebook Groups
The amount of money I have spent (well, saved if you look at it glass half full) from Facebook groups, such as Save and Share Deals, is rather high. These groups come in extra handy during the holiday season as the group owners work around the clock on your behalf to help find the best deals and share links. The one I am linking to is a fellow Kansas City mom!
5. Stick to a Budget
If you are someone who benefits from having bumpers to keep you in your financial lane, come up with a budget before you start to shop and stick to it. This will help curb the impulse to buy something for the sake of it being an awesome deal—because there will be lots of those. Great deals are infinite, dollars are not.
I’m hoping these tips help get your holiday shopping season off to a more organized and focused start. I like to set a goal date to be done with all my shopping so I can relax knowing it’s complete. With an early Black Friday, it sounds like 2020 may be the year to have all those names checked off well before the actual holidays arrive.
Happy shopping and best of luck—let me know what you find!