Friday, November 22, 2013

Black Friday vs. Cyber Monday

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In exactly one weeks time crazed shoppers will be hungrily lining up post turkey coma in order to be the first in line to score those Black Friday deals. However for those who do not exactly find fighting hundreds of rabid shoppers, there's always the alternative of Cyber Monday to snag those deals too. These two events that takes place after every Thanksgiving marks the start of the Christmas shopping season. Before you start preparing yourself to enter the onslaught, I'd like to take some time to share some tips and debunk some myths regarding this shopping weekend.

  • One surprising revelation is that those same deals seen on Black Friday are actually available online the same day, no need to wait until Monday, you can easily get those sales from the comforts of your home.
  • More and more stores these days are actually posting better deals and beginning sales on Thanksgiving days. Those interested in this should consider a quick lap around the mall as a pre-turkey feast workout.
  • Many people are fooled into believing that Black Friday marks the lowest sales of the years, however this is not necessarily true. You should hold off buying toys, HDTVs, and winter clothing which see steeper dips in prices right before Christmas, between December and February, and post Christmas respectively. 
  • Watch out for the mediocre sale items mixed in amongst the doorbusters that will give you quite a shock at the checkout.
  • Many stores will amend their return policies around the holiday seasons, so before you make an impulse buy on those trendy boots, check their policy just in case.
  • This days are good instances to practice strategic shopping. Lines are longer and people are more irrational than usual, it is smart to have a plan of attack and find some way to multitask while waiting in line so at the end of the day you won't be agonizing time lost that way.
  • Those doorbuster deals you see in commercials and print ads are used to generate buzz and attract shoppers into the store. Retailers are only able to slash the prices that much by holding onto limited quantities, so unless you're willing to stand in line in the freezing cold hours before the store opens, you are better off seeking those deals that aren't too good to be true. Also doorbusters aren't available just in stores! Many retailers are now listing those items online too, sitting in my pajamas refreshing a page is much more appealing to me than fighting the crowds.
  • A lot of stores have began price matching on Black Friday. So that amazing deal you found on Amazon (with the insane shipping fee and 6-8 month expected delivery time), can be brought into stores and matched.
  • Retailers are now advertising Cyber Weeks claiming great deals for the whole week, however the best deals are still found on Sunday and Monday, so don't be fooled by the week.
  • Be wary of Cyber Monday because retailers are often unable to accommodate to high volumes of traffic leading to sites crashing as well as often selling inventory that they do not have. Often their system cannot update as quickly as a consumer can order so clicking Checkout does not always guarantee you will receive your item because sometimes it has already sold out before you placed your order but the system still hasn't update to reflect that.
Which day will you be taking advantage of this year? What are some things you are hoping to score with these sales?

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