Ah, November. It’s a wonderful time here in Massachusetts when the pilgrims got the best deals on their brimmed hats and breeches. Of course, we’re talking about the day after Thanksgiving.
That’s right. Black Friday deals are upon us, and they’re some of the best of the year. However, that’s only if you know how to get the most out of the holiday! Let’s talk about the Black Friday Shopping Guide for 2021, the price drops, and what you need to know before shopping in-store.
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Start With A Plan
Once you’re done enjoying your Thanksgiving traditions with your family, it’s time to rest up. You’re on a mission tomorrow.
Seriously, if you want to get the most out of your favorite shopping holiday, you need to have a plan in mind. It’s unlikely that you will get everything that you want for the perfect price, especially if you don’t strategize. Here’s where to start.
Create Your Wishlist
Whatever it is you are looking for, whether you need them or want them, your plan should start with a wishlist. This is the list of your wants as well as any holiday or birthday presents that you want to buy in advance.
From there, you will have an easier time prioritizing and strategizing. First, you need to figure out which items are most important, then find the stores that have the best deals on those items. Let’s start with that.
Black Friday sales are always heavily advertised online, so it’s easy to do your research without the need to pick up brochures or flyers. Try to choose stores that are relatively close to each other for an easy shopping day, especially if you plan on shopping at more than one store.
Black Friday shopping is hectic at peak hours, so try to get in early or find out which stores offer early access to their deals.
Whatever items are the most important on your list, look for the best deals and make those the first stops on your list. If your wishlist contains more than 10 items, it’s unlikely you will find everything you need at your local stores unless you plan on shopping in Boston.
If you do, figure out your transportation situation, as parking will be a difficult task at certain stores within the city. Just remember, if you take public transportation, you’re limited to buying only what you can carry. These are things to consider when looking at deals to determine if it’s feasible to shop at these locations.
Start your research well before Black Friday, and don’t stop at browsing the internet. Here’s what to look for.
Look on the apps of your favorite stores, especially if you have a loyalty rewards program with them. Here, you will find the best deals for the holiday and possibly be able to preorder your wishlist and have it held for you.
If you are a loyalty member where you intend to shop, this could maximize your potential savings, especially if you have “points” saved up at a specific store. Open your apps and find out!
Look For Early-Bird Discounts
Some companies will offer discounts for ordering in advance, which will help you avoid the crowds and offer a headstart, so the items you want aren’t sold out when you shop. These will usually be advertised in the company’s apps, social media, or on their website.
Compare prices of items on your list between your favorite Black Friday ads and the online Cyber Monday deals. Why waste time or money if you don’t have to?
If you can find better deals or price matches with Cyber Monday deals, it will save you your most valuable resource on Black Friday: time.
This is especially important for holiday presents, as shipping companies and supply chains will begin to back up in the weeks after. Give yourself as much time as possible to avoid late gifts.
Also, make sure that you compare prices with different stores. Best Buy might seem like the perfect place to buy a new laptop, but you might find the same one you wanted even cheaper at a different store! It’s worth checking.
Create Your Buying List
You’re ready now. Shop online for the best deals, match them with your wishlist, and create your finalized buying list.
Once that’s complete, try to stick as closely as possible to your list to avoid overspending, wasting time, and ensuring you have room to transport all of it.
Make this list as narrow as possible to save yourself time and money when it comes time to shop. The holidays are expensive, so try your best to limit wastefulness.
Always crunch the numbers. Consider shipping, cashback, discounts, transportation, and other costs to ensure that you’re getting the best deals. The sticker price will seem appealing, but that isn’t the only cost.
Make A Schedule
Once you find deals that match your intended area and items on your wishlist, determine your schedule based on your priorities and the store’s hours.
Which store will you go to first, and what are you getting? How much time will you spend at that store? Where’s the next stop?
Tips For Shopping On Black Friday 2021
Once you have found the lowest prices and created your itinerary for the day, you’re ready to begin shopping. However, there are some important tips to keep in mind for when the day comes. Here are some of the most important ones.
Start Early & Keep Time
Before Thanksgiving, shop online for the lowest prices and see what you can buy ahead of time. Look for curbside pickup options and anything that can save you time throughout the day.
Stores are likely to start running out of some popular merchandise by the early afternoon, so give yourself as much time as possible to complete your checklist. This process should start days before the sale even starts.
“Starting early” should also include saving money in advance for the big day. If there’s a lot that you want to purchase on Black Friday, then make sure that you have enough to cover it.
Pay With Credit
This isn’t a contradiction. You should still have the disposable money to cover everything that you want to buy.
However, if you want to save even more money on Black Friday, then using a credit card with points or cashback is a good option. Stick tightly to your buying list, and don’t go overboard.
Assuming that you pay it off right away, paying with a credit card will usually give you some amount of cashback. Most credit cards offer between 1% and 1.5% on standard purchases.
However, most major credit cards also offer special cashback offers when you purchase certain items, at a certain store, or in a certain way.
For example, many cards will offer a certain amount of cash back if you use a store’s curbside pickup feature or if you spend a certain amount of money at a particular store. If you’re already doing to be doing that, then why not save extra money on it? Check on your credit card app for more details on their rewards offers.
Also, if you have a credit card that is through a specific store like Target or Amazon, doing most of your shopping at those stores (where you find the right deals) will offer you the most rewards.
If there’s a television that you want to buy at one store for $185 on Black Friday, have a backup in mind for Cyber Monday, even if the TV is $200 on the other store. Merchandise is known to fly off the shelf during these sales, especially for expensive products like electronics or jewelry.
Avoid Huge Crowds
Large crowds probably mean good sales, yes. However, if you’re planning to attend more than one store, then a huge crowd will hinder your ability to meet your list. If you have backups in mind, use them when necessary.
Also, the holiday, especially the shopping holiday, is meant to be enjoyed. It’s hard to enjoy it if you feel like cattle being herded.
However, due to the large crowds that you are likely to face at one point or another, we recommend staying Covid-safe while shopping. Ideally, you should wear a mask and wash your hands, as social distancing is likely to be a challenge.
Ask For Gift Receipts
Asking for gift receipts is always a good idea to ensure that your recipients are happy with their gifts and that they can be easily returned if there are any issues. Believe it or not, as much as $90 billion worth of merchandise is returned every year after the holidays!
Even if you’re certain that a present is perfect for someone (or even for yourself), sometimes items don’t fit correctly, don’t work as intended, or there’s no longer a need for them. Make sure to keep these receipts safe through the season!
Frequently Asked Questions
If this is your first Black Friday, or if you’re really trying to boost your shopping game, then you probably have some questions. Hopefully, we’ll offer them for you here. These are some of the most frequently asked questions about the holiday!
Does Black Friday Really Offer The Best Deals?
On average, Black Friday and Cyber Monday tend to have the best deals overall, but they extend throughout the entire week.
The week after Christmas also tends to have major clearance sales and sales on certain items. For example, the last week of the year is noted to be the best for buying cars, as dealerships try to increase their sales to meet financial quotas.
However, for the average consumer goods, Black Friday and Cyber Monday are the best. If you miss something on those sales, Green Monday is the second Monday in December, and it offers similar discounts to Cyber Monday. Although, there’s no guarantee your purchases will arrive on time.
Is It Necessary To Wait Until Black Friday?
Not necessarily. If you browse through Black Friday listings well in advance and see the deals they offer, there’s a chance you will find them elsewhere beforehand. However, Black Friday deals tend to be the best of the year.
When Are Black Friday Ads Released?
They are usually released weeks in advance. At the very latest, they should be posted on the Monday of Thanksgiving week on their websites, apps, or social media pages.
Are The Ads Posted Always Accurate?
Not 100% of the time, but you can usually count on them. Sometimes, legal conflicts, supply chain issues, and other problems cause prices to change before the actual sale day.
Also, there are occasionally fake Black Friday deals posted and shared on social media and other places online, so always verify these on company platforms.
What If I Can’t Make It To All The Stores?
As we mentioned earlier, it’s always best practice to have a backup plan. If you miss an item or two on your list, there will always be cyber deals later on for the same or similar products, so don’t worry too much.
Have Fun Shopping!
Now that you know the holiday insider tips get the most out of Black Friday 2021 by comparing prices, saving time, and getting the best deals. Also, don’t forget to have fun and stay safe during the holiday season! Stay up to date with our latest news, and feel free to contact us with any questions!
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