Earn/Save Money

How to Get the Best Black Friday Deals Without Leaving Your House

I’ve never quite understood Black Friday. Getting up at the crack of dawn, or even worse – camping outside of a WalMart in order to save $60 on a TV? This may have made sense for the super budget-conscious or competitive shoppers of the world, but these days there’s no need to but your personal safety in jeopardy when that mom with the crazed look in her eyes takes you out with her shopping cart for a furbie. This is how I, personally, choose to do my black friday shopping – and I don’t even need to recover from my Thanksgiving food coma or change of of my snuggie. Here is how to get the best black friday deals without leaving your house:

Make a list: Create a shopping list of the gifts you intend to buy, and any big ticket items you’ve been waiting to purchase. It’s easy to get caught up in the sale frenzy and end up buying a bunch of things that will end up in next year’s garage sale.

  •  Giftster Create a Giftster group and invite family and friends to join with this app. See their wish lists and create your own. The best feature lets the gift-buyer mark an item on someone’s list as reserved or purchased to avoid duplicates — without that person knowing.
  • List Ease Lets you split your lists with a friend or family  so that you can split the shopping responsibility. You can organize your lists by store, person, or type of item, and get push notifications when your shopping buddy crosses anything off.

Follow your favorites: Sign up for emails and text messages from your favorite retailers so you’ll automatically be notified of special offers. You should also follow them on social media like Facebook and Twitter, where they may post deals or coupons. I would also suggest subscribing to Amazon’s deals emails to get daily updates leading up to Thanksgiving weekend.

Be prepared to snag online deals: Set up a Paypal account ahead of time for fast checkout, or map out the stores you want to shop at and create an account ahead of time, so you can do fast checkouts. You don’t want to lose a good deal in your shopping cart (sell out) while you’re filling out information needed to purchase the item.

Compare prices online NOW: Start doing your homework now to see how much the items you’re looking for generally cost. You can often find great deals online without the Black Friday hype, especially when you consider using promo codes from sites like Retailmenot.com. Use the following apps (who also have great websites) to compare all of the items on your list and make sure you’re getting the best price.

The Must-Have Black Friday Apps:

  • Redlaser is the price comparison leader. An eBay owned barcode-scanner app, you can scan items to find the best price locally and online or buy stuff and arrange for pickup at participating retailers. It also keeps all of your loyalty programs in one place so you can earn points on your purchases, plus you can also use the app to create and manage multiple shopping lists and manage a list of your purchases. Prices still too high? Set alerts for specific products so the app will tell you exactly when what you’re shopping for goes on sale at a local merchant or online retailer.
  • Amazon Price Check app is one of my favorites, since in my personal experience they always have the best prices, especially since they offer the option of buying used (which is handy when buying things like books, dvds and sometimes luggage.) You can even take a picture of whatever you are searching for and the app will pull it up for you. Since Sunday the online giant has been releasing new deals every 10 minutes and will continue until cyber monday.
  • FatWallet has a black friday specific mobile app that helps you search by category, store, brand price and doorbuster. Compare over 100 of the major store ads, page by page with product/price details, and then shop in the online store or directly through a FatWallet checkout (and earn cash back if you’re a FatWallet member, like 3% cash back from WalMart – and they pay you via check or paypal). Save your favorite deals to wish lists and share them with friends via text or email (hint hint honey).
  • Retailmenot: As mentioned before, this app is a go-to for me whenever I shop online. You know that little box that says “Promo code” when you’re checking out at an online retailer? Well that’s where this app comes in. With codes for over 60,000 stores, and a rating system which lets users know which are active and working, you are very likely to find a promo code for what you need. This year’s Black Friday codes already available include an additional 20% select small appliances at Best Buy. You can save your coupons for later, and the app will send expiration notifications for your saved coupons, so nothing slips by when you aren’t paying attention. Bonus: there’s no sign up or login required

Want high fashion?

  • Gilt.com  The go-to sample sale site is featuring blowout discounts on womenswear. Shop their liquidation sale and receive a free shipping coupon for Cyber Monday. Plus, if you refer a friend, you both get $30 off your next order. Normal deals on Gilt include a v-neck wrap dress from M Missoni regularly $695 marked down to $299, or an Elie Tahari motorcycle jacket normally $998 marked down to $549
  • Rue La La is also offering deep discounts on it’s designer stock via 24 “Today’s Fix” sales, held throughout Black Friday weekend. Preview the boutiques that interest you in advance, and sign into your account at 11am sharp to take advantage of the flash sales.

Get rebates. Get cash back for online purchases by using sites like Ebates.comFatWallet.com and Swagbucks.com. “The sites offer a percentage of your online purchases back in cash.” The PayPal MasterCard Debit card also earns you 1% cash back on your purchases.

Gift cards: It’s worthwhile to check out sites like giftcardgranny.com where you can buy gift cards for the stores you’re going to be shopping at a discounted price. Discounts can range from 10%-30% off of its retail value. 

See wasn’t that easy? Thankfully for technology you won’t have to brave the cold or risk getting into any fights in a Target parking lot this year, and you’ll probably save more money than all those poor souls out there missing sleep and losing sanity.


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