Shop smart when buying gifts this Christmas!
The holiday shopping season is in full force. But you may not want to wait until the week of Christmas to start hunting for deals on gifts. People who hold out for cheaper prices, closer to Christmas, risk missing their chance to buy what they want. That’s because as discounts become more generous, out-of-stock items double or triple, depending on the product, according to a report by Adobe Digital Index.
- Do this before you look at an ad or go to a store: Make a list of who you need to buy for and what you’d like to get them. Figure out how much you can spend on gifts. Factor in your monthly budget of groceries, gas, bill, etc. With what you have left over and what you have to buy, you’ll be able to set a budget without reaching for your credit card. Consider ways you can save in the weeks leading up to Christmas and use that money towards gifts as well.
- Let the competitiveness of stores work to your advantage: If you didn’t cash in on the deals on Black Friday, which actually happened on Thursday again this year, start tracking prices. Track prices in store fliers and online. When you see the best price yet, nab it. That doesn’t mean you have to go to that particular store. Remember that price matching is an easy alternative to driving all over town or paying shipping fees. Just be sure that you have found the exact same product, it is available and is a lower price and you can walk into Target, Walmart or other big name stores and pay the lower price.
- Stack Savings: Only buy a particular product when it is on sale. Say you found a sweater for your sister. Wait for it to be on sale, 30% off or more. Next, wait for a store coupon that offers additional savings on top of sales. Many of the retailers have these offers in your mail box, e-mail box, or posted on their websites. Do your research, stack when the time is right and you’ll save.
- Wait for Christmas Clearance: December 26th is my favorite shopping day of the year. I’m not kidding. It is the best day to buy clothes at department stores or at the mall. Watch for extra-incentive coupons for these stores in your mail box. Have your Christmas with the relatives after the actual date and cash in on clearance gifts. Some will go to 50% off the very next day. That’s a nice savings! Shop around the store and not just in the holiday section. Think about all the products that have holiday packaging. These items will be marked down as soon as Christmas is over. Be sure to watch for coupons for these products in order to maximize savings and get them for next to nothing! These products include plastic service ware, facial tissues, paper towels, food storage, air fresheners, coffee, baking mixes, gift sets and a lot more! I have some coupons prepared for you to print for free here.