When Black Friday rolls around it’s a sure-fire sign that the year-end holidays are around the corner and it’s a great time to pick up stuff on the “cheap-cheap “especially if you are looking to fill a couple of Christmas stockings. Let’s be honest, who doesn’t enjoy splurging now and then (even if it’s just for you), BUT, if you plan on spending some moola this Friday, perhaps it’s prudent to do a little planning and budgeting before you pop your cheque card details into the shopping cart trolley and hit the ‘check out’ button.
At Wise About Life, we’re all about making smarter decisions and in this blog post, we’d like to give you a few tips on how to navigate Black Friday.
Online or in-store?
Are you going to be doing your retail thang online or in-store this Friday? To be perfectly honest, we think trawling around shopping centres isn’t the best use of your time and energy. Online is the way to go if you can curb your enthusiasm and hold out for a few days while your new items get couriered to you.
Buy from a legitimate website and look out for SPAM
Make sure you line up legitimate websites to visit on the day and more importantly avoid any SPAM emails and SMS messages you get, that have links that look odd. Black Friday is a con artist’s dream day for duping unsuspecting people who are all geared up to spend. A little planning before the day will make sure you don’t become reactionary which is what the cyber-criminals are hoping for.
One last bit of advice on this matter. If it’s too good to be true, it generally is. You can’t buy a 30-inch Smart TV for R1000 🙂
Make a list and be very specific about what you are looking for
Identify exactly what items you are looking to find specials for. If you’re using black Friday to do your Christmas shopping then write a list of who you are buying for, set a limit on how many items you will be buying for each person and some ideas on what you can get them. Also set a budget you are willing to spend on each person or for each item you intend to purchase. Don’t just buy for the sake of buying. If you are looking to buy a new air fryer, decide which websites you are going to visit and how much you are going to spend.
Do your homework
If you do a little homework before Black Friday hits, you will get a sense of the current retail prices and then on the day you will know if you are saving (and more importantly how much you are saving). For example, if you’re looking to buy a new pair of sneakers for your son or a new TV, check what the current prices are for these items so you know if you’re getting a good deal from the retailer.
Get in early
The early bird gets the worm. On Black Friday there are only so many worms available because retailers simply don’t have an endless supply of items to discount radically. You need to get in early and if you are shopping online, you must do a little research beforehand. Get in touch with the retailers you want to spend money with before Black Friday and make sure you have the lowdown. In most cases, online retailers will start kicking off deals the night before to ease the traffic to their websites on the day which can cause a crash. If that is the case, it is something you want to know.
Avoid tempting credit offers.
Avoid tempting credit offers. If you don’t have the money to buy it now, then you must consider a few things before buying the item on credit.
- Is the discount big enough to warrant incurring interest charges?
- What will the interest charges be?
- What if you simply decided to walk away from the deal for another 12 months and buy the item in cash?
- If you do decide to take the plunge, can your budget accommodate the unexpected expense?
What type of Black Friday strategies are you looking to implement?
We would like to hear from you.
Safe shopping guys and gals.
The Wise About Life Team