Black Friday shoppers spent a total of $59.1 billion, an increase from the previous year’s spending of $52.4 billion, reports the National Retail Federation. Seasonal shoppers are already poised to make the most of this year’s shopping; are you one of them? Making the most of Black Friday means more than waking up early and pushing your way to the coveted goods. With a little careful planning and thoughtful strategy, your Black Friday experience might actually be pleasant and productive!
Plan Ahead and Do Your Research
The savviest shoppers already know to search online to find all the best Black Friday deals ahead of time. There’s no point showing up at your favorite store and simply hoping it will have what you want. It’s also important to discriminate when it comes to sales so you don’t end up feeling overwhelmed. Start with a practical shopping list that is grounded in the actual gifts you plan to get for family and friends, and then look for sales that offer similar items. If you start by looking at the sales first, you may end up justifying a big ticket purchase and then find yourself with no recipient!
After hauling yourself out of bed in the wee hours of night, don’t leave yourself to the whims of your GPS and whatever Black Friday spirit may move you through the mall. Instead, prioritize by making a clear list in descending order of importance. If you’re positive you want to hit the big sale at Macy’s because you know you’ll check off several items on your list, then do that first instead of waiting until the end of the day when the items will be picked over and your energy will be running low. Start the day off right with a clear plan so you can get some success right off the bat. Then, after a refueling break and perhaps a drop off trip to the car, you can use your remaining energy to hit the lower priority spots on your list.
Bargain Hunting vs. Browsing: Know the Difference!
When it comes to Black Friday shopping, you’ve got to be clear about your purpose and goals so you don’t end up overwhelmed. Many people approach this day with a plan to buy as many gifts as possible in order to knock out their shopping in one fell swoop. If that’s your plan, you should aim to move quickly and efficiently and not waste time browsing through items that aren’t aligned to your wish list. But another approach is to not make any purchases and instead use the day to look at items and compare them in person before making a purchase online. According to The Baltimore Sun, this browse-then-buy approach has started to gain favor, especially with more and more retailers offering online deals on “Cyber Monday.” Either way can work as part of your overall strategy, but make sure you’re clear on your approach so you can make and stick to a plan that works for you.
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