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Black Friday: how to detect if an offer is a real discount or scam?

carolvanzyl

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It is almost that time of the year again. Black Friday arrives again the day after Thanksgiving, and we can easily get sucked into the hype around Black Friday and Cyber Monday’s best deals! You just need to make sure they are actually discounts.

Black Friday: how to detect if an offer is a real discount or scam?

We are all hoping for the best bargains to fill up our Christmas stockings or tick off items from our shopping list that we have been making since the beginning of the year. It doesn’t matter if you are planning on doing your holiday gift shopping or simply shopping for yourself. You should consider a few things, as some Black Friday deals might cost you more and not less.

How Can You Evaluate a Black Friday Deal?

Consider these four things to ensure you are making responsible financial spending while shopping for Black Friday deals.

Quality over Quantity

When making larger purchases, consider whether the service or product specification suits your needs. Remember that you might miss a reduction in suitability or quality regarding the fine print, and you might only realize this once you start using the product.

History over Hype

An old but very effective advertising trick is the fabricated “before” price to sugarcoat the “deal” price that might seem like a discount, but it’s not. Most of the experience Black Friday shoppers out there keep an eye on items months ahead of the big day, indicating to them whether the discount is as good as retailers say.

Instead, browsing old advertisements and sales catalogs will help give less-prepared buyers the same edge as those that are more experienced.

Bits over Bundles

Some deals are structured as bundles, making purchasing decisions more effortless. But it’s worthwhile to research the value of the various bits included in a bundle offer to see if you are saving money or just thinking that you are getting the best deal.

Reason over Rush

Last but not least, knowing that another very effective advertising gimmick is placing a timeline on deals is essential. Those “it’s now or never” deals and buyers then tend to be in a rush to beat the clock, and this pressure can lead to ill-considered and unnecessary purchases.

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Here Are a Few Tips To Get The Most Out Of Black Friday Shopping

Don’t get caught up in the frenzy that you lose track of what you want and need while ruining your shopping budget on nonsense that your dog might not even be interested in playing with in the long run!

Check Apps and Ads

Retailers send out Black Friday emails and circulate all their ads weeks in advance, which gives us more than enough time to shop for the best deals. Doing this gives us time to organize our day to shop for all the deals we want. Ensure you research the specific hours the deals will run online or in-store to avoid disappointment.

Most online retailers offer mobile apps that offer push notifications on all their Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals. You should be able to find a link on their site to register.

Comparing prices to ensure you get the best deal can help you save significantly, especially on higher-priced products. Using price comparison apps such as Keepa, The Camelizer, and Price Blink, pull price info to help you find the best lowest prices. These apps can help you find the best prices ahead of time or while you are shopping in-store.

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Look for Early-bird Discounts

Yes, you can score on early-bird offers from some retailers, which may make your Black Friday less stressful running around last minute in crowded stores. Shopping these discounts also allows you to get the stock before the store runs out of stock due to higher-than-expected demand or stock shortage issues.

So keep your eyes open while there are some discount deals, but be aware these might have a limited time, so shop responsibly with these offers.

Do Some Research on Black Friday Deals

While following the best deal ads, you should consider researching the different brands and reviews that will tell you a lot about the quality of a product. If you know the original prices of products, you can accomplish whether it is a great deal or only a small discount offered.

Sometimes we tend to be so excited about the hype of getting the best Black Friday deals that we forget to look into the exchange and return policies and end up leaving us stuck with a product we won’t use or wear. Understand time limits and types of products you can return, and always keep all your receipts on hand. Will they only give you a gift card for your return, or can you get your cashback?

Plan Your Shopping Experience

Don’t get stampeded by a crowd of Black Friday shoppers. In contrast, some might give you a sideways smile. They are NOT your friend when shopping for Black Friday deals.

The best way to do it is to map out your shopping day (if you are not doing it all online) by starting with what is at the top of your must-have list. Many stores offer specific shopping hours, so make sure you are on time.

You can do some online browsing in advance to ensure the store you are planning to shop have your products in stock.

Prepare Yourself to Request Price Matching

Did you know that there are retailers that offer price matching meaning they will offer you a lower price to match their competitor’s price? It also allows you to get your favorite product at a lower price from your favorite store or even the exact product sold at another store for the same price.

You can look up a retailer’s price-match policy in advance, ensuring you don’t make a fool of yourself if the store doesn’t match prices. Remember that when you ask for price matching, you need to bring your proof along, whether it is a screenshot or a print ad of a competitor’s deal. However, it needs to be precisely the same products!

Be Careful Shopping with Your Credit Card

Yes, buying with your credit card has perks, such as purchase protection, extended warranty, and reward points, but it can also lead to overspending. You don’t want to end up with high credit balances over the holidays, leaving you to pay more interest.

Ensure you have a shopping list and set a budget to avoid overspending. Don’t allow these significant discounts to tempt you to spend impulsively; if you think about it, spending money you didn’t plan for does not count as saving.

Ultimately you can return the products you don’t need even when you think it was a bargain. Some stores have extended return periods.

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Get the right deals this Black Friday!

Whether you are a responsible shopper and plan well in advance for any shopping spree you go on – we can all get caught up with the Black Friday hype, and some deals seem too good to miss. But life is full of surprises, and we never know when we might need a little extra in the bank to overspend. Shopping can cause more problems than having a house full of “the best Black Friday deals,” don’t you think?

However, if you choose to spend this Black Friday or Cyber Monday, just remember to do so wisely and within budget!

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