Tempted to get some hot bargains on this year’s Black Friday hunt? It’s the war, guys. The key? Preparations, strategy, and planning. The most important battle-winning factor is planning, i.e., framing the problem and creating a shared understanding of the challenge you’re trying to address. If you feel like fear is already settling into your bones, we’ve got you covered. After all, Black Friday is not as crazy as it was before. Well, kind of. But online shopping made it less similar to bloodshed.
How to Shop Smart on Black Friday – 6 Black Friday Tips
At Enjoy The Wood company, we know that many of you prepare for Black Friday shopping season all year long. Chances are that for quite a while your mind has been filled with the idea of getting that flat-screen TV, iPhone, or some other tech for jaw-dropping prices. To make the after-Thanksgiving ritual less painful, we’ve listed some tried and tested tips for Black Friday shopping to help you buy things like a pro. Oh, and stay alive, of course.
1. Decide What to Get for Black Friday
Never buy off the shopping list. Don’t have a shopping list? Get it! What items are you going to fight look for? Who is on your Christmas list this time? With a detailed list at hand, you’ll have the so-called ‘road map’ that will save you from impulse buys. What is more, you won’t wander amidst the counters not knowing what to grab. As a result, you’ll get back home with a basket that doesn’t contain the what’s-that purchases. If you’re a deal-hungry shopper and can’t stick strictly to the list, make a deal with yourself – maximum 2 things off the list. You know your budget and its limits.
2. Check Prices and Sale Ads Before Black Friday
It’s hard not to get caught up in the biggest shopping event of all times. Even if you’re an experienced shopper, all the ads seem to go crazy both online and on the high street. That is why the Black Friday planning stage includes checking the best Cyber Monday and Black Friday offers before they actually drop. Surf social media platforms to check retailers of the products you’re interested in and catch teasers for some generous discounts. Use shopping apps to stay updated on the hottest deals.
One of the key Black Friday tips here: Cyber Monday deals and Black Friday deals aren’t the same! Thus, you should have a strong shopping strategy to know in advance what retailers you’re going to deal with. The truth is the competition is hot, and some products may be cheaper than the rest. That is why it is crucial to know ahead of time the list of retailers and the stores they represent.
3. Set a Budget and Put Money Aside
No matter how obvious this part looks, don’t skip it! Just like you decide what to get for Black Friday, it is important to set the budget ahead of time. Not sure if the deal is in the right size or color? Stay away from the impulse unnecessary buys!
Since the world has moved to cyber shopping, more and more people are using credit cards to shop for Black Friday deals. That’s fine if you can boast of solid self-discipline. If not, chances are you will overspend. Things like interest-free financing promotions usually provided by the store credit cards will get you stuck paying interest on 100% amount of your purchase if you fail to pay off the balance before the end of the promotional period.
4. Shop Online and Don't Waste Your Time
While a lot of deals will be available in stores, try to go online shopping this time. You’re more likely to get access to more options out there when shopping via gadgets.
Walking along the virtual aisles has definitely revolutionized Black Friday weekend shopping. Below are the main reasons to focus your planning for Black Friday on the non-conventional shopping method:
- You save loads of precious time. No need to sit in traffic for hours!
- You don’t get tempted to do spontaneous purchases. If you’re frequenting your favorite shopping malls but can't really say why you buy the things you do, the Black Friday maximum benefit for customers is guaranteed during cyber shopping sessions.
- The most trusted retailers are just a click away! Whatever item you put in your cart, you have a chance to browse online reviews to choose reliable websites like Enjoy The Wood or any similar resource.
- Non-violent behavior on Black Friday is possible. Safety is one of the central benefits of shopping online for the best Black Friday deals.
- Products unavailable at in-person stores can be found on the web.
- If you’re into discreet purchases, online shopping is a 100% guarantee of confidentiality.
5. Don't Go Overboard On Gifts
Your aunt Meggie would definitely love that vintage golden chandelier for all the money in the world that you saw last night. Looking for meaningful and unique gifts to make your loved ones truly happy is sweet. However, if your surname doesn’t happen to be Rockefeller, grabbing whatever you see just in case will leave you penniless.
Even though Black Friday fever is the official start to the holiday shopping season, your task is to shop smart without breaking the bank. Lock all your emotions at home before you set off for the Black Friday fun. It’s easy to lose your mind a bit in the spirit of the shopping season. However, when it comes to purchasing gifts, your emotions are the worst guide ever. This is when you turn on smart decision-making and logical thinking. By this time, you’ve got your to-buy list at hand. Check in with it when a sudden and immediate desire to purchase something kicks in. Thus, you won’t go over your average spending on Black Friday.
6. Be Ready for Possible Confusing Moments
The grandiose shopping season is upon us, and you know how to shop smart on Black Friday. What could possibly go wrong? We’re taking a step back to shed light on potentially confusing situations during the busiest shopping event:
- Get ready for returns. Year after year returns policies are getting tougher. Some stores may provide only a short return policy for certain items. Moreover, you may be charged to pay the so-called restocking fee. That is why those who are unsure if they’ve purchased the right size should consider making a return asap (ensure to keep all the receipts!).
- Never-ending checkout lines. Store shopping during Vendredi noir is not only about discounts but endurance, speed, and…survival. Be ready to rush around the store aisles. Get what you need to stay alive at the end of the hunger shopping games (water, medicine, etc.).
- Fraud shopping sites. While you believe you’re surfing the official site of the chosen retailers, you’re actually getting into a trap of scammers about to steal your personal and financial data. Make sure the site URL is legit.
- Late deliveries. One of the biggest disappointments. Ensure you’ve checked all the shipping details and the estimated date of delivery.
- Doorbuster sales. Be careful when dealing with those since you might not get the best deals if you’re not the first in line. Going to a door-crasher deal can only push you to buy something that’s off your list.
Pros and Cons of Black Friday for Customers
No matter what you’re looking for, you're guaranteed to get some aggressive discounts off the original price of whatever is on your shopping list. The toughest part is deciding whether you really want to take part in the highest-selling shopping holiday. The way out? Do your homework! Browse the pros and cons of Black Friday adventures and see if you’re ready for the hunt for rock-bottom prices.
Black Friday Advantages for Customers
Before Black Friday madness hits your local stores, check out the key benefits of the over-the-top shopping event:
- Generous discounts. The most obvious yet the main advantage of the Black Friday shopping time. It’s your chance to get the latest must-have toy at the lowest price.
- An opportunity to clear stock. One of the Black Friday advantages is that it’s like a general cleaning before you go shopping for Christmas.
- You know what’s in your shopping cart. In contrast to Cyber Monday, the Black Friday event is about touching, seeing, and trying the things you put on your list.
- It boosts the economy through the whole of November.
- Extended work hours for local shops. Loads of shops during Black Friday will be open until late at night.
- It’s fun. Take a shopping buddy or your significant other on a shopping adventure!
Cons Black Friday
When it comes to the possible cons Black Friday is no exception. No matter how excited you are about the upcoming time of stingy discounts, consider the following negatives of the consumer-focused weekend to decide whether to participate this year:
- Prices may keep on dropping as the most wonderful time of the year approaches.
- Black Friday’s frenzy may steal your attention from the true meaning of Thanksgiving (it’s all about gratitude and celebrating blessings only!).
- Overspending. More often than not, people tend to spend more money than they actually planned.
- Black Friday is about wasting some precious time either in traffic jams or long lines.
- The number of real discounts may be strictly limited and sold in a flash (it’s time to become an early bird shopper!).
- Noise, crowds, fights, etc. If the floods of shoppers fighting over the latest electronics or a stylish pair of shoes don’t seem like the best weekend entertainment for you, stay in.
So, are you ready for the big Black Friday sales event? The toughest part is deciding if you should join the hunt for the best bargains or not. If you’ve been keeping an eye out for particular deals throughout the month (or year!) and have a full wish list at hand, go ahead. Enjoy the moment.
At the same time, if the slightest idea that you should skip this year’s Black Friday sales creeps in, reconsider. Plus, if nothing on sale – from clothes and groceries to appliances – motivates you to get into the intense crowding, why bother?