After a tough 2020 with access to stores restricted, retailers are hopeful this year that the weekend after Thanksgiving will once again bring in crowds of shoppers. With the holidays approaching, it's not too early to plot your shopping strategy to ensure you don't miss out on any Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals.
This shopping season, a shopping plan is more important than ever as retailers across industries, especially technology, struggle to keep the shelves stocked.
In-demand products may be in low supply due to shipping delays, reduced workforces at manufacturing plants, and material shortages. Therefore, pick the one or two items you really want to find on sale. Then, figure out where you will buy them and set out early during Thanksgiving Week to make your purchases.
Sign up for email alerts from your favorite stores because many Black Friday sales will start before Thanksgiving. BlackFriday.com contributor Steven Abrams says not to wait for Friday if what you want is already on sale. Abrams thinks it's improbable that stores will deepen the discounts on Friday itself.
WHERE TO SHOP
To find the best deals, where you choose to shop matters. According to deal-tracking website Tom's Guide, search Amazon or BestBuy if you seek technology gifts. However, if apparel and home goods are on your shopping list, browse the deals at stores like Wayfair and Bed Bath & Beyond.
PURCHASES TO SAVE FOR THE HOLIDAY WEEKEND
Some things are better to buy on Black Friday than others. Generally, big-ticket items are the most discounted. These include things like TVs and mattresses, as well as small kitchen appliances.
According to BusinessInsider.com, last year's best deals were on TVs and other smart-home products like robotic vacuum cleaners.
If you are just after deals in general and not a specific product, try your luck and wait for after Christmas sales. Items in holiday packaging that didn't sell and items of excess quantity will all be discounted in the new year. Clothing stores will also be clearing out winter items to make way for the next season's trends.
BLACK FRIDAY VS. CYBER MONDAY
If you're shopping for TVs, gaming consoles, appliances, or toys, buy them on Black Friday. As for Cyber Monday, you should think of clothing and tech deals, including digital subscriptions or annual memberships.
Abrams also predicts that Cyber Monday will see airlines offering discounts "on certain routes and travel sites offering flash deals on vacation packages," despite a rough year for the travel sector.
IN-PERSON OR ONLINE
At least for another year, you can expect stores to cater to those people who don't want to join a crowd in the store. As a result, you can expect "fewer in-store events, with many doorbuster deals moving online," according to BlackFriday.com.
In keeping with recent trends, many stores will not open on Thanksgiving to give employees the day off. Already reporting that they won't open on Thanksgiving Day itself are BestBuy, Target, and Walmart. For an up-to-date list of store hours, BlackFriday.com compiled a list of retailers that is constantly updated.