Ok, I’ll say it: I hate Black Friday. I’m not sure if it’s the crowds, the great deals that are always out of stock by the time you actually get in the door, or the “deals” at big box stores that just mean they are finally price matching Amazon. Speaking of Amazon, Cyber Monday (the Black Friday of the internet) is upon us, but without all of the things I hate. To me, there’s something incredibly appealing about waking up early Monday morning, putting on my fuzzy blue bathrobe, getting out my laptop and buying everything I need before going to work (I wouldn’t dare use company time to scour the web for online deals all day long – not me!)
In order to get the most out of your Cyber Monday, I’ve shared some of my top secret tips with you to squeeze out every last drop of shopping goodness the day has to offer:
1. Make a Plan, Stan.
There will literally be thousands of different deals online today, so it’s easy to get overwhelmed. Make a list of items that you really need to purchase this holiday season and start doing some research. Keep in mind Cyber Monday isn’t all about gadgets, there are plenty of travel sites and other online businesses offering steep online discounts. Make sure to read reviews so you can find not only the best deal but also the deal that has all the features you want.
2. Start early!
Many deals start early on Cyber Monday and sell out before most people are awake. Sometimes the really good deals will sell out, so it’s a good idea to prioritize your shopping so you don’t miss out. Also, you don’t want to get caught shopping on the job, so try and get it all done before going into work!
3. Shop around!
Just because it’s Cyber Monday doesn’t mean everything is a deal. Comparing prices among online retailers is always a good idea.
4. Use Deal Sites
Many websites like Fatwallet.com and Dealnews.com aggregate the best deals on the web. I use them on a regular basis to find awesome stuff on the cheap, but on Cyber Monday they can be invaluable tools.
5. Do Your Homework
If the deal is too good to be true, it usually is. Haven’t purchased from a particular website before? Read their reviews! With a little help from Google you can find reviews for every online business worth purchasing from, so don’t get stuck buying from a company that is going to take weeks to ship your item or is unwilling to do returns. When in doubt, use a trusted online retailer. It’s also important to make sure that when you are entering passwords or credit card information that you always make sure you are using an encrypted connection from a verified website. You can easily check this by clicking on the secure “lock” icon in your web browser’s address bar.
Good luck and happy deal hunting!