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Tips and Tricks To Hack the Best Black Friday & Cyber Monday Shopping Deals (2021)

Black Friday and Cyber Monday are just around the corner, on November 26 and 29 respectively. Brands have already hopped on the “early savings” bandwagon, going all out to preview attractive deals, with some even launching pre-launch sales.

One of the busiest shopping periods, this season certainly isn’t for the faint-hearted. While the sheer volume of deals can get overwhelming, here’s how you can make the most out of deal season and snag some good savings.

Do your research

Research and planning are key. List out some key questions, and have your answers ready for when the deals start dropping.

What do you want to buy? Draft a shopping list and make notes about the items you’re eyeing, such as the prices across different platforms,so you can refer and calculate how much cost savings you’ll get during the actual BFCM sale.

Where do you want to buy from? Some sites might be more likely to give you deep deals on certain types of items, while others might have shipping rates that don’t work for you.

How much should you be paying? Find out how much something costs regularly, so you know at what percentage discount you should be jumping to buy.

You can even make use of a Black Friday calculator — simply input the type of promotion, its original price and discounted price, and the calculator will let you know whether this deal is worth taking.

The more you plan, the less hesitation or uncertainty you’ll have when time is of the essence!

Abandon your cart

Adopt the hack of abandoning your cart, especially if you’re unable to find discounts.

Instead of rushing to purchase, close your browser and play the waiting game. This “abandon your cart” trick comes with its perks, but bear in mind that not all brands will offer this. With some retailers, you may receive an email within 24 hours to remind you of the items you’ve left in your cart, along with an additional promotion code to incentivise you to check out.

If you do make use of this trick during the Black Friday and Cyber Monday sale season, remember to keep tabs on when the promotion period ends. If you haven’t received any reminder emails with extra promotion codes towards the end of the sale, you may want to consider purchasing on other platforms, or simply buy at the sale price already offered on site.

Memorise your credit card details

During the sale, it’s usually a game of fastest fingers first. Increase your chances of successfully snagging a deal by committing your credit card details to memory, so you don’t waste any time fumbling for your cards. Or make sure they’re saved on all the platforms you intend to purchase on so you save time. Amazon’s one-click purchase feature, for example, is dangerously convenient.

Know your sizes

Your shopping list should give you a sense of what’s on your to-buy list.

Jot down your sizes for ease of reference. For example, if you intend to purchase a pair of sneakers, it may be useful to note down your shoe size in different conversion charts, including UK and US sizes. Similarly for clothing, know your size and measurements, such as the more commonly used ones like pit-to-pit, length and bust measurement.

Once you have all this information right under your nose, you won’t have to waste precious seconds and risk the items you want disappearing from your cart. Furthermore, the return process might be cumbersome for overseas merchants, so save yourself the hassle by getting your sizes right.

Know store policies

As much as you try to plan beforehand, sometimes there are temptations that are too irresistible.

To help soften the blow if you succumb to those, read through stores’ exchange and refund policies to check if you can return the item after the sale period. Try to remember which ones let you, and consider if an item is worth buying — no matter how deep the discount! — if the store won’t let you return it.

Use Incognito mode to shop

Have you encountered instances of price hikes on the same item you’ve been eyeing? This is probably due to dynamic pricing, when retailers collect information based on your browsing or purchasing history and use it to alter the price of the products.

More than just for privacy, Incognito mode can also help you save. Browsing in this mode does not record your browsing history, cookies or cache, which means that retailers are not able to understand your interests and manipulate your willingness to pay.

Although dynamic pricing can sometimes work favourably when retailers decrease the price of the products you’re keen on, this can later lead to impulse buying. To drive you to complete the purchasing process, the price dip could offer the illusion that you’ve clinched a good deal and may lead to you buying items you don’t even really need.

One point to note while using Incognito mode is that your browser won’t have access to your personal details. Remember to log in to your existing accounts on Incognito mode for a smooth check-out process.

Keep a lookout for early bird shopping discounts

Unlike in past years, brands are stepping up their marketing game and are more aggressive than ever as the Covid-19 pandemic waxes and wanes. What used to be a one-day shopping frenzy now takes up the better part of November.

In the lead-up to the actual Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales, many brands would have already sent out emails publicising their deals. Follow your favourite brands on social media to get first-hand updates of their best promotion bundles or discounts, so you can snap them up before anyone else!

Use cashback sites and cards

Since you’re already intending to shop, why not get rewarded with cashback too? Some sites like ShopBack come with plug-ins for your web browsers, so you will get notified when there is available cashback for the store you’re browsing through.

With cashback upsized during this sale season, you can expect quite a significant amount of money saved!

Spending with the right credit cards can also help you claw back some of the money you’re splashing out. Some cashback cards have a minimum spending requirement, and going big during Black Friday and Cyber Monday on these cards can help you hit those levels across the board, or earn miles that you can use later.

Don’t go overboard

It’s easy to overspend when you’re not keeping track. Don’t go down that route and make purchasing decisions you’d only come to regret later on.

Keep track of your expenses with the Planner Bee app — create a budget and see how much you’re spending this sale season, and decide where to cut back.

We hope these tips will help you become a more discerning shopper, and there are always alternatives if you can’t snag what you want. Enjoy the upcoming sale season without breaking the bank!

Originally published at https://plannerbee.co on November 13, 2021.

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Cherie Wang - Planner Bee

Cherie Wang - Planner Bee

Founder at Planner Bee. Simplifying financial planning for the masses. Providing educated guidance to help build a plan toward a better financial life.