How to prepare for Black Friday shopping

Reporter: Andryanna Sheppard
Published: Updated:

Black Friday officially kicks off the holiday shopping season but real shoppers know the holiday shopping season really starts before the day after Thanksgiving.

Black Friday is a rush. Millions of people will hit the stores early to take advantage of those deep discounts and doorbuster deals.

“I need a new TV, so I will be going Black Friday shopping,” one person said.

Julie Ramhold, Consumer Analyst with, said Black Friday shopping begins with preparations, a list and a plan.

“If you’re looking at things like electronics, laptops, TVs, new cell phones, all of that, make note of what their prices are before the sales begin so that when they do start you can tell pretty quickly at a glance if it’s a great deal to take advantage of,” Ramhold added.

Black Friday shopping
Black Friday shopping (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel, File)

Then, follow all of your favorite stores and brands on social media. They might release coupons, deals and sales there first. Bookmark websites and item pages ahead of time so you can easily add them to your cart.

Once you see a deal, still shop around. You might find it cheaper somewhere else. But be cautious, the longer you wait you risk the item disappearing off the shelf.

“Be sure to look just beyond the price tag and make sure that you’re actually shopping the retailers that make the most sense and will get you the best steal because of other perks that you may not necessarily think about,” said Ramhold. “For instance, if you see that Target and Walmart are basically charging the exact same thing for the latest iPad, you may be tempted to go to Walmart because it’s $1 cheaper. But if you have a Red Card with a Target, you can save 5 percent on that purchase anyway.”

And gone are the days where you have to get to the store right after you finish your Thankgiving dinner so you can get those deals and fight the crowds. Ramhold explained stores put most of their Black Friday deals online when the pandemic started since social distancing didn’t allow many people inside the store at a time.

“If you want to get the best of both worlds, I’m a big believer in doing buy online and pickup in store,” Ramhold added. “You can still get your items sooner but you don’t have to battle the crowds. A lot of places still have curbside pickup. You just pull up to the designated spot, let them know you’re there and they’ll bring it to out to you.”

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