It’s time for Black Friday 2016 already, and even as you are starting to panic in anticipation of the long queues and the endless noise that is part of the shopping crowd, we tell you how you can ease your woes and make the best of your energy, time, and of course, your money!
Try out these expert shopping tips that will help you shop smarter on Black Friday, and let you make the most of your time and effort.
1. Make That Wishlist – Even as you browse through various online catalogues to find out what deals are about to come up, keep selecting your favourite items and add them in the wish list. The best part is that you can always access them on your phone, even as you wait in the queue or run about from store to store.
2. Grab The Apps – Almost all your favourite brands and stores have an app that you can carry with you in your smartphone. So, instead of waiting to be surprised at the store and losing out on precious time, scan the apps and stay updated about what items are going to be available as part of the best deals. It will really help you plan out your shopping time accordingly.
3. Check Specific Black Friday Sites Or Apps – Instead of trying to find out about deals from various brands and stores, go to specific Black Friday sites and apps that can offer you curated information about the most happening deals across stores and sites. You can also take a look at our list of the 45 hottest Black Friday deals for 2016. Some such sites that can offer you all the information on Black Friday deals are RetailMeNot.com and TGIBlackFriday.com.
4. Compare And Hunt – Even before you go all gaga over that particular Black Friday ad that you saw about something you were meaning to pick up, make sure to do a little homework and compare the prices. Use a price comparing site, such as PriceGrabber, to help you compare the prices of the products you are planning to buy. If nothing else, it will show you whether or not you are really getting a good deal on something as part of a Black Friday sale, or if you can skip it and pick up later instead.
5. Go Online – Believe it or not, some of the best deals are even better when you shop for them online. In fact, you will see that the online deals are open even before the deals in store are on, so it is a good way to check for your specific shopping list online first, and then head out to the store. Look out for lightning deals and online ads that will showcase upcoming deals for Black Friday. Not just that, some online sites also allow you to book a particular Black Friday item online and avail the discounts, and later collect it from your nearest local store. In case you do not find it online, you can head out to the store on the main day.
6. Plan Your Electronic Shopping – Some of the best deals on electronic items are always available on Black Friday. So, if you are a gadget freak and love your gaming consoles, tablets, smart phones, smart watches and all of these wonderful goodies, make sure to get your electronic wish list ready and prepare to grab them during the massive sale weekend. The Black Friday deals that you get on electronics are undoubtedly the best you can expect to get through the year, so focus, plan and shop accordingly.
7. Be An Early Bird – If getting more out of the best deal is what you are looking for, make sure to queue up at the store before dawn, or even better, around midnight before the sale is officially even open. Some of the big brands are known to add extra gifts for their early customers by offering additional discounts or free gifts. It could be anything from a gift card to coupons that give you additional discounts on your overall purchase.
8. Split Up To Shop (With Your Group) – It is almost impossible to grab everything alone on your list on a Black Friday. Instead of missing out on great deals and not being able to find what you are looking for, a good way to do this is to plan an outing with friends. Make a list of which person goes to which store and who has to pick up which item. The more people you have in your group, the easier it will be for you to spread out and reach for more.
9. Get A Gift Receipt – Considering the fact that much of the items you buy will also be shared as gifts, it is important that you remember to ask for a gift receipt. A gift receipt will mention the item you bought, as well as the date of purchase, but will not mention the price, as it is a ‘gift’ item. The receipt will make it easier to return the product in case it has to be returned or exchanged for any reason.
10. Start From Thursday, Not Friday – If you are looking to maximise your Black Friday deals, the best day to start hunting is Thursday, and not actually Friday. Even though the biggest and most exclusive deals may be available on the main day itself, most stores have started to open their doors to the special deals a day in advance, which is, Thursday. Also, Black Friday will have the maximum number of shoppers at any given store, so if there are some items that you know will not be on huge discounts but that you still need to buy, you could well pick them up on Thursday. Also, most online stores will start their Black Friday sale from Thursday itself. So make sure to check those out as well.
11. Make Best Use Of Gift Cards – A lot of the brands offer huge benefits in terms of gift cards, when you shop for a particular amount or product. While doing your overall spending, calculate the amount on the gift card and try to use it at the same time, as it can help to bring down the price even further. Not just that, if certain brands or stores do not allow using the gift card on the same day or on the same purchase, you can always exchange it for another gift card at a gift card exchange site, such as Raise.
12. Stay Energised – While this is not really a shopping tip, it is definitely going to help you shop better. Remember that shopping on Black Friday means going without real food for hours, as you stand in queues or run from one store to the other. In such a scenario, make sure you have an early start and stock up on something filling to eat before you head out for your shopping. Remember to carry enough water or fluids to last you for some time, as well as stock up on some fruits, nuts or granola bars to munch on when you feel hungry. After all, it won’t really make sense to stand in a queue for hours, only to faint with hunger or exhaustion just when you are about to reach out for that item.