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Surviving Black Friday….

The Everyman’s guide to Black Friday…

 

Named for the day stores and retailers start “getting in the black” or turning a profit for the year.  Black Friday is the day following Thanksgiving.  It is notorious for frustratingly long lines, huge crowds, and limited discount merchandise.  Despite this, it’s a highly anticipated occasion as shoppers hunt for amazing bargains and hope they’ll get incredibly low process for more expensive items.  Here are a few helpful suggestions for surviving Black Friday:

Know what you want before heading out. 

If you have no idea what you want, question your purpose in heading out onto the crowds at the mall.  Without a plan, it will be tempting to spend money you don’t have on items you don’t really need.  It’s better to have a plan in mind or you could be using the day more constructively.

  • • If you’re shopping for gifts make a list of all the people you’re planning on buying for.  You can keep track of who gets what by creating an organized shopping method.
  • • If you are buying for yourself or your home make a list.  Be as specific as possible think about what you have that is out of style, ill-fitting, etc.  The same goes for home purchases.  Avoid wandering along in hopes of finding “things” to add to your kitchen or other areas of the house.  Think about what is broken, missing or that needs upgrading.

• Have a budget.  If things are tight a budget is a must.  Even if things are not tight a budget will help you control impulse purchases.  Decide how much money you have to spend and stick to that amount.

Plan your shopping trip. 

Not only is the budget and list important but so are the ways in which you plan to go after bargains.  Start early, the earlier the better.

  • • Find your bargains from newspaper ads, coupon packets, Black Friday discounts, etc.  Know what’s on sale and who’s selling it.  Some sales may last all day, some for just a few hours. Things sell out quickly so be prepared.
  • • Map out the store.  Decide what department to hit first for the most important items or gifts on your list.

• Organize your transportation.  Parking lots will be congested and anxious shoppers rage can start early.  Consider having someone drop you off and pick you up or take public transportation to avoid the parking headaches.

Have a back-up plan.

It’s a good idea to have alternative gift ideas if what you are seeking is sold out. Chances are high you may not always find the item you are looking for especially with highly popular items.

Have the right tools with you. 

Carrying too much can be burdensome but you will probably want a cell phone to know the time and to keep in touch with family or friends who may be with you.  Even if the stores provide bags it’s a good idea to bring along your own stronger bags if you’re planning on carrying the purchases around for a while before taking them to your car.

  • • Be sure to bring along money.  Make sure you have all the cash, credit and gift cards or other forms of payment you need.
  • • Take along discount coupons of other special offers
  • • Most importantly don’t forget your list.

Surviving Black Friday can be easy with the right planning and proper execution. Make the most of your Black Friday with these tips…

By Jack Stieber –  President – American Receivable