There are a lot of opportunities to score a good deal in November and early December. It all kicks off just one day after Thanksgiving with Black Friday. But between that and Cyber Monday and all these other official shopping days, how do you keep them all straight? We break down each of the four main shopping days following Thanksgiving.
What it is: The day after Thanksgiving is the official first day of holiday shopping, therefor retailers offer extremely reduced prices.
How you can participate: Almost every store, especially large chain stores, will have sales. Check your local advertisements, store’s websites, or, if possible, their apps. Nowadays sales start as early as Thanksgiving afternoon and last until late the next day.
Quick tips: Remember to price check items. Don’t get too caught up in the hype and assume it’s a good deal. Also, unless you want to sit outside in the (probably) freezing weather, plan to skip out on the door busters. You’ll also want to have a game plan well before you enter the store. It will be much less hectic that way.
Small Business Saturday
What it is: In response to Black Friday, small businesses host their own shopping and sales event the next day.
How you can participate: Check in with your local shops! There may be a Facebook event that includes all participants, or you may need to check with each shop’s page or website individually. If you have one concentrated area of small businesses, like a downtown area, just head that way late Saturday morning and score some deals!
Quick tips: Small businesses may not have as good of deals as large businesses, but their stuff is typically better quality and more unique. When you spend money locally, it stays in the community. That’s an added bonus of Small Business Saturday!
What it is: Online retailers wanted a piece of the action, so they created Cyber Monday. It takes place the Monday after Thanksgiving and most businesses, especially online only businesses like Amazon, have huge sales and savings.
How can you participate: This is the easiest shopping event to participate in because you don’t even have to leave your couch! Log on to your favorite website and search for the deals. Most will announce Cyber Monday sales before.
Quick tips: It can be tough to know what to buy with Black Friday and Cyber Monday so close together. Do a little research and try to figure out which day will have the best sales for the items you’re wanting. You will also want to go into Cyber Monday with a budget. It’s very easy to spend money online, so make sure you have a limit and you stick to it.
What is it: With all the popular shopping days right after Thanksgiving, it made sense to include a day of giving as well. Giving Tuesday was created to encourage people to donate to their charities and non-profits during the holiday seasons. It is always the Tuesday after Thanksgiving.
How can you participate: You can participate by simply donating to a charity you like or you can be a part of the Giving Tuesday movement by donating through ilgive.com (this site is different for each state, this is only for Illinois).
Quick Tips: If you go through ilgive.com, your money may go even farther than just your donation. ilgive.com matches donations, offers extra donations to charities who reach certain goals, and so forth. However, it’s just as impactful to donate straight to the source. If you aren’t sure where to donate, try somewhere like the United Way, where they are able to find the best source for your funds.