Cyber Monday Shopping Tips
Cyber Monday is coming up quick, and the savings this year are sure to be fantastic. If you’re new to shopping this retail “holiday", or you just want to make sure you’re getting the best deals, it’s wise to start your research early.
There’s just one thing about that, though. With hundreds of articles about saving money and doing well when shopping on Cyber Monday, the research phase can be a little overwhelming!
Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.* This article includes all the very best tips and strategies to save time and money so you can get just about everything you want or need on Cyber Monday. *
History of Cyber Monday
Cyber Monday was created by retailers to encourage people to shop online. While it may seem like an institution already, it actually made its debut on November 28, 2005 – this wasn’t even a thing 15 years ago!
The term Cyber Monday was coined by Ellen Davis of the National Retail Federation and Scott Silverman. This day has become the online equivalent to Black Friday, and it also offers a way for smaller retail websites to compete with larger chains.
How To Prepare for Cyber Monday
There are a few things you can do prior to the big day to get set up for savings success.
First, bookmark all your favorite stores so you’re not wasting time looking up the links.
Next, review last year’s sales (you can simply Google “XYZ Store Cyber Monday 2018" to find the ads) to help predict if what you are shopping for might be on sale. Historically, the types of items that are on sale include clothing, small electronics, small appliances, toys, and televisions. If you’re looking for savings on things like holiday decorations and jewelry, consider putting these purchases off unless a specialty store is having a big sale.
After that, look up your preferred retailers on social media. If you’re not on Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook, investigate opening accounts – then follow your favorite merchants as they will often post tips and deals leading up to a sale. You can even save links to a few top merchant’s social profiles to save even more time.
Stay notified by signing up via email. Most larger stores and many smaller ones have a newsletter that sends you notifications, so be sure to sign up for those. While you’re at it, sign up for loyalty programs, too – stores that have loyalty programs will often have special sales or promotions for their members.
In the days or weeks before Thanksgiving, begin making a shopping list of the gifts you want to get for people so you can work ahead with your strategy. Then, a few days or weeks before the sale, shop for retailers’ discounted gift cards. You can find them at websites like raise.com – just make sure there are no Cyber Monday exclusions!
Here’s one more thing to research before the big day. Check out return policies so you’ll know if a super great deal has a lot of rules about what you can and can’t return. After all, if you wind up stuck with something you don’t ultimately want, it’s not a good deal no matter how cheap it was.
Shopping on Cyber Monday
The most important rule for Cyber Monday is to set a firm budget. It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of good deals, and that can lead to overspending, so make hard and fast budgets beforehand.
As for when to start, the best time to start Cyber Monday shopping is the Saturday just after Black Friday – that’s when some of the best deals will first start showing up online. After that, either stay up late Sunday or get up very early Cyber Monday. There could be flash sales or other early shopping discounts.
If you prefer shopping in person, there will be deals in store on Cyber Monday, too. Many brick and mortar locations will offer sweet deals to get people off the internet and into their stores.
When you’re shopping online, use it to your advantage by comparing prices before you hit the Buy Now button. Don’t assume that because an item is “on sale" on one site that it isn’t cheaper on another. Google the exact model numbers to see if the same item is available at other stores for less. It only takes a moment but could save you huge!
Also, when comparing prices, check on shipping and handling prices, too. Some stores still charge for shipping, and that could add up to a big difference.
Stack your savings by using online promo codes and coupons from sites such as Savings.com to get additional discounts on sale items whenever possible.
To save some money, *try to avoid up-sells, suggested add-ons, and most extended warranties. *
And as a final note, when you’re shopping online - both on Cyber Monday and the rest of the year - make sure to regularly check your bank accounts and credit cards for any suspicious activity.
Like other sales throughout the year, there are tons of opportunities to get the things you want or the perfect gifts for loved ones on Cyber Monday. By taking just a few steps in advance, you can ensure that you can save tons of money and time during the sale. Happy shopping!