Black Friday is nearly upon us, and if you plan on shopping on the busiest retail day of the year then do yourself a favor and come prepared. If you’ve shopped on Black Friday in the past then you know that having an idea of what you want is crucial to keeping stress levels low while surrounded by the madness. Well, good news! We’re here to help! We’ll give you the inside scoop on what to avoid, the hot items to buy and how to set yourself up for a successful Black Friday shopping.
Related: How To Shop Black Friday Like A Pro
What to avoidWhen shopping on Black Friday it’s important to be focused on what is actually a deal. While Black Friday does have many, and we do mean many, screaming deals there are some items that don’t need your attention. Either avoid these items altogether or buy them in December because you will probably find much more in savings.
Gift Cards – Experts tell us that there will be deals on gift cards on Black Friday, but the real savings will come in December. Few people want to buy gift cards as presents to friends and family, but we also recognize that 7 in 10 people received them last year. If you do decide to go this route then wait until December. Expect to find a trove of retailers and restaurants offering gift cards after a minimum purchase.
Gaming Consoles – Okay, the experts aren’t exactly unanimous on this one, but there are some factors that you should consider. Microsoft is releasing Xbox One S and PlayStation is releasing PlayStation 4 Pro in November. Don’t expect them to offer any deals when purchasing these – they’ll be in very high demand. Prices will likely remain consistent all through December. If you want savings you’ll have to wait until after the New Year. The experts do however recommend looking for bundles with your favorite games included. That could save you some cash, but again deals specific to Black Friday may not be in the cards. If you’re really looking for savings then expect massive price drops on previous generation consoles.
Holiday Decorations – Discounts are generally not offered for items that are only popular during the holiday season on Black Friday (another example is winter clothing). We understand that it’s hard to have enough foresight to wait until after the holidays to buy your holiday decorations. So if you must, go ahead and buy them, just don’t expect any savings when you do.
tip: Visit www.theblackfriday.com for a master list of deals provided by just about every retailer you can think of.
What to buyWe saved the best for last, so put your napkin in your collar and prepare to savor the savings on these hot Black Friday items.
Electronics – Black Friday is known for its deals on TV’s, smartphones, and just about any electronic, you can think of. This may be the only time of year when cell phone providers will slash the price on the newest model of smartphones. If you’re planning on giving a smartphone as a gift Black Friday is your day to get it done.
The same goes for TV’s. Experts tell us (and you’ve probably experienced this) that savings can be enormous. Best Buy is offering a 55 inch Westinghouse LED TV for $379.99 (down from $449.99). That same TV was offered last year at Target for $249.99. Don’t get too fixated on the difference in price between Best Buy and Target. The point is that the savings are there, and a little preliminary research can save you a lot of money this Black Friday.
warning! Deals on TV’s can be fantastic on Black Friday, but keep in mind that they generally apply to lower grade products. For deals on TV’s with the highest definition expect the best sales to come in January before the Super Bowl.
Tablets definitely earn the distinction of “hot item” on Black Fridays. Expect to find deals on many tablets at just about every retailer that sells them. Just don’t expect a great deal at the Apple Store for Apple tablets. Experts tell us that in store and online retailers will offer better savings.
tip: Read Black Friday 2016 sales, leaked ads, and follow the links to find sales and deals that were released a bit earlier than these retailers intended.
Around the House – For stores like Sears, Wal-Mart and Target Black Friday is their bread-and-butter for home appliances and kitchenware. In fact, deals are so good for these products that you might want to make them your gift to yourself this year. You just won’t find better savings on these products any other time of year than on Black Friday. Again, just be sure to do your homework on the appliances. Some of them will be refurbished and others will be on the low end of quality.
fact: According to Google, online searches for the “best” product are up 50% in the last year. How does an item get the “best” rating? Consumer reviews. That means that savvy consumers are using product reviews more often to gauge just how good items are. Be prepared with your smartphone to get these reviews while in the store.
Any Kind of Disc – Whether it’s a CD, Blu-Ray, DVD, or video game these items are hot on Black Friday. This is one of the few times of year when movies are cheaper to buy in disc form than through streaming services. Not to mention that when it comes to boxsets, Black Friday will present major savings. Old titles for video games will also see substantially reduced prices. Experts seem to refer to these items as stocking stuffers, but who wouldn’t love a box set of Seinfeld as part of their main gift?
Regardless of what you’re shopping for we wish you a successful shopping trip on this Black Friday. We know the holidays can be a stressful time of year, and that’s why we’ve gone to great lengths to get you ahead of the game for your shopping needs. Many of us will skip the Black Friday mayhem and opt for Cyber Monday or later. For those brave souls who venture into the crowds in the hope of finding the best deals we know you’ll come out ahead if you keep these tips in mind.