Getting ready for Thanksgiving to me means planning the family meal, getting the house ready for decorating, and planning for BLACK FRIDAY! I love Black Friday! I usually go to the same stores but only plan to shop at one or 2. The other stores, such as Wal-Mart, the only reason I go to those stores is to "people" watch. And If I happen to be lucky enough to get a good deal then WOO-HOO!
I do try and make an action plan before I go. I tried a few years to just kinda go with the flow and see what I get and where I go but that never worked out so well. You know, Look at the ads, go to the stores web sites and also visit Consumer Search. Consumer Search is an award-winning Web site that helps consumers make informed shopping decisions. They analyze a mix of expert and user-generated product reviews and recommend the best products to buy based on their findings.
Here are a few things I do to get ready for the start of the Holiday shopping season, (AKA: Black Friday) As well as tips from Christine Frietchen, ConsumerSearch’s editor-in-chief from ConsumerSearch.com
- This is one that both Christine and I agree on: Do your homework, many Black Friday circulars are leaked early online. ConsumerSearch.com will be analyzing leaked circulars from Kmart, Sears, Kohl’s, Lowes and more on our Productopia blog. Some so-called door buster aren’t worth getting in line early.
- Check on the current price of Black Friday sale items. Sales circulars often tout “a $50 savings” but that’s off of the MSRP. The savings off the street price is usually much less dramatic. We found lots of items selling for the same or less right now – no waiting, no lines. Example: you can find some Items on Amazon.com for less than the black Friday in store prices at other stores. And you can already Shop the Amazon.com Black Friday prices Now!
- Check for reviews. Try ConsumerSearch.com, we analyze the best editorial and user reviews to create an easy-to-read report to make sure you love what you buy- we do all the research so you don’t have to. You can also try a Google search for PRODUCT + Reviews. Also look at the store’s site, since most retailers allow customers to post reviews. Dont forget to check out your favorite review sites! You know you will always get a well thought out, Honest review. At times, A person who works for the company or store will go and write their own fake reviews just to get the ratings up. I have seen this on all types of Items but mostly on Phone applications. If your in doubt, Just ask your friends!
- See if there’s something better. We found this to be especially true with cameras and GPS: The product might be a good deal, and might even get decent reviews, but a much better product often costs the same or only $5 or $10 more for a much better gadget. Hey, just because its on sale on Black Friday dosen't mean that its the best one for the price out there. It just goes back to doing your homework.
- Set a spending limit. Leave the credit cards at home and bring cash so you HAVE to stick to your budget. Don’t go shopping with your “spendy” sister or friend who tends to get caught up in the excitement. You Really do need to stick yo your guns here. If you dont you are going to be like me about 6 years ago. Oh man its kinda funny. I go to get just some trees and decorations or whatever. I have NO plan. I didn't look at an add. I just GO! I had by best friend with me. She parked our Shopping cart in a strategic central location and I would weave my way in and out of the crowd and just Grabbed stuff! (She did have to go get the tree for me. I'm kinda a weenie). We had an amazing crazy fun time but I think we spent like $300 when I really didnt need all the stuff.
Have a Happy Thanksgiving and Be truly Thankful for all you have.
I do love each and every one of you and I want you to know that I am Thankful for you all.
With much LOVE,