Make sure you're getting some great Black Friday deals with these top tips.
This year, Black Friday falls just after payday for many of us. But don’t worry, with a bit of forward planning and self-control, you can avoid the dreaded overspend and walk away with everything you need for a fraction of the usual cost.
Plan, plan, plan and then plan some more
There is nothing worse than going to a Black Friday sale with no game plan. One of two things will happen: you will either get so overwhelmed by the chaos and start filling up your basket with things that you don’t need or you will miss out on the best deals by not being focused.
Most retailers involved in the Black Friday game list their deals as ‘coming soon’ in order to entice customers in before the day hits. Take advantage of that by planning exactly what you want and where to get it from. That way you avoid being tempted into those impulse purchases.
Set a budget
As well as working out exactly what you want, make sure you know how much money you have to play with. This will help you keep away from the stuff you don’t need and focus on what you do.
Hunt down the pre-sale sales
As this tradition continues to grow, more and more retailers are trying to get ahead by starting their ‘Black Friday’ sales early. Familiarise yourself with these and get them checked off the list. Many online retailers such as Amazon start offering massive discounts from mid-November, with savings across nearly all products, but make sure you snap up that deal quick as they change so frequently, you may end up missing out.
Top Retailers to keep an eye on:
- John Lewis
Stay in the loop
The majority of participating retailers want to make it easy for you to get spending, which is why they have created specific Black Friday pages containing important information on sale start and end times, products up for grabs and the biggest reductions. Bookmark these pages for super simple bargain hunting with the likes of John Lewis, Amazon, and Argos. It’s also a good idea to download the apps, follow social media profiles and sign up for the newsletter of those retailers you’re expecting to see big things from.
Buy discounted gift cards and save even more!
Did you know you can buy unwanted gift cards online? Well, you can and it’s a fab money saver. Websites such as Card Yard offer gift cards at a discounted cost eg 30% off Build-A-Bear and 15% off MAC cosmetics, so you can save even more by using one of these when you’re doing your Black Friday shopping.
Bonus Tip: If you use cashback credit/debit cards or shop via cashback websites such as Quidco or Top Cashback, you can save EVEN more! (If you are shopping using a credit card then ensure you pay off the balance as soon as you can to prevent paying interest).
Don't forget Cyber Monday – 2nd December
Just when you think it’s all over, Cyber Monday takes hold and it’s time for online retailers to get involved in the fun. Good news for you, more great bargains to be had on less tech-based products such as fashion, beauty and holidays from some big names including Debenhams and John Lewis. This is the perfect time to get a jump start on your Christmas shopping and bag yourself some great deals.
Don’t panic buy
Usually, retailers extend some of their sales, and it's now not unusual for them to all the way through to Christmas once Cyber Monday is over, so don't panic and buy an alternative to the desired product, just make sure you keep looking for bargains.
Don’t be fooled
It can be easy to fall into the trap of buying products that will be reduced further over the next couple of months. Products like furniture which is notoriously cheap in Boxing Day and January sales, tools which sales figures show are at their cheapest around Father’s Day and Christmas gear that is much cheaper to buy in advance in the January clearance.
Pre-register your accounts
There’s nothing worse than being ready to buy then realising you have to set up an account from scratch – especially as some retailers only hold products in your basket for a certain amount of time. Get yourself registered with all the key Black Friday players to avoid that from happening on the day.
Do your homework on returns
In the mad rush that is ‘the big day’ sometimes purchases are made that are not quite right or not what you were after. In that instance, it’s a good idea to know what the returns policy is before you purchase to protect yourself from being stuck with something you can’t use.
Look out for scam websites
Scammers are getting increasingly sophisticated with their crimes and taking advantage of unsuspecting consumers is their forte. If you’re doing your Black Friday shopping online, make sure you’re using secure websites and never click on a link from an email and make the purchase without ensuring the website is legitimate. If in any doubt, search for the product on their website, loaded independently of the email – if you can’t find it or it’s listed at a different price, leave it behind!
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