With Thanksgiving just in a few days, you know what is just around the corner-Black Friday. Even if you have never been out to face the cold, crowds, and good deals, I am sure you have heard your fair share of stories. Of course, you hear the stories of people getting all their Christmas shopping done in day, or getting that new TV for a very low price, but there are also the stories of people waiting in line for HOURS or getting trampled when the doors open. Some people are HUGE Black Friday shoppers; they have everything mapped and timed out to every little detail. They plan to hit each store as soon as it opens and have a planned routine to get in and out as quickily and painlessly as possible.
Back in the day, people would have to wait for the Thursday paper or even if they are lucky, the weekend before to find out about all the hottest deals from each store. Nowadays, some ads for these stores were printed in OCTOBER and posted on the internet for all to see. It is ridiculous how one person can get a hold of a sacred ad and have hundreds of thousands of people view the ad before it has even come out.
Personally, I am going to do a little bit of Black Friday shopping and I have not picked up a tangible ad for any of the stores yet, and I don’t plan to. At the end of October I got to see the ad I wanted without having to wait until this Thursday. It’s so convenient to use the scanned ads that are already available online. I just Google “Target Black Friday” and like magic, hundreds of results of the scanned Target ad for Friday will pop up.
This gets even better when you follow a popular forum. A Forum is simply “a public meeting or assembly for open discussion”. The online forums that I follow are made up of thousands of Savvy Shoppers. One of my favorite forums, slickdeals.net, has a “Black Friday” section where you can view the ad for almost any store you wish, plus because so many people are involved in a forum, people have posted coupon match ups and advice to match your deals even better. Slickdeals uses a Wiki at the beginning of every forum, where all the deals are entered and coupons and rebates are added. Anyone who is a member of the forum can add and erase coupons to keep it updated.
It’s amazing to me how much work is eliminated out of your Holiday shopping by using online ads and coupon match ups. Forums are a great way to get accurate information because they are collaborative and can be constantly updated.
One last note, there is also an app for iPhones/touches/pads, called “GottaDeal”. They also have a Black Friday section, but now you can view the deals and plan your Friday all on your handheld device.