A strategy helps make the most of Black Friday

By Paula Felps

As the busiest shopping day of the year, Black Friday — the day after Thanksgiving — is one of your best bets for scoring great deals on holiday gifts. But without proper planning, shoppers can sometimes come up short.

According to Michelle Madhok, shopping expert at SheFinds.com and author of Wear This Now: Your Style Solution for Every Season and Occasion, a successful Black Friday begins with strategy. She recommends starting with a list of who you’re buying for and what they need. “This will help you focus, which is necessary when speed is of the essence.”

Shopping success

Once you have your comfy shoes on, Madhok says there are a few tips to make your Black Friday more successful:

  • Make sure your smartphone is fully charged. Use apps like eBay, RedLaser and PriceGrabber to scan barcodes and compare prices.
  • Plan ahead, and aim for big-ticket items. “Seventy percent off a TV is worth more than 70 percent off gloves.”
  • Double-check to make sure the items are in stock or guaranteed for Christmas delivery “or you might be handing out IOUs on December 25.”
  • Know the return policy. Deeply discounted items may be non-returnable.

Online strategies

If you want to avoid the crowd and enjoy your Black Friday savings from your computer, Madhok offers one valuable tip to score better deals: “Hit ‘View All’ and shop from the bottom up,” she recommends. “Everyone else will be shopping from the top down, so things at the top of the page will sell out more quickly.”

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