After the Thanksgiving holiday many go immediately into the holiday shopping mode and retailers take advantage of that, offering steep discounts on Black Friday, and now Cyber Monday. Unlike Black Friday, shoppers can participate in Cyber Monday without having to step into a crowded store or wait on a never-ending line or wrestle that item you’ve been coveting from the grip of a rival shopper.
But shopping on Cyber Monday isn’t always as simple as rolling out of bed and heading to the computer for a plethora of deals. Just like Black Friday, shoppers want to be prepared before braving the World Wide Web of discounted products. Here are some tips for having the best shopping experience on Cyber Monday.
With Cyber Monday becoming even more popular than Black Friday, many online deals may sell out quickly. Cyber Monday deals begin at midnight so if you haven’t already started shopping you may already be behind the curve. Analysts indicate that retailers offer some of their best Cyber Monday deals at midnight, as well as midday. Many retailers also schedule their deals to begin and end at different times of the day. Shoppers should plan their Cyber Monday shopping as much as possible to avoid product sellouts and to hit those scheduled deals as soon as possible.
Know exactly what you want to buy
Cyber Monday is not the time for retail therapy; it’s a real in-and-out situation. Knowing what you plan to buy beforehand will make the Cyber Monday shopping process exponentially easier. Shoppers should set a budget for how much they want to spend and try their best to stick with it. Retailers will try to tantalize customers with online door busters, those deals that look so unbeatable; but unless the product you want is a door buster, it’s best to pass.
Many retailers have the same products on sale for Cyber Monday. Shoppers that haven’t begun comparing prices may want to check a few Websites to see which retailers offer the cheapest prices. Prices may differ by only a few dollars, but customers may also find other perks by shopping around, like coupon deals and free shipping offers.
Gone are the days of coupon clipping when it comes to shopping online. Now coupons come in codes, which shoppers that use during checkout. Many retailers email coupon discounts to customers that subscribe to their newsletters. And during sales like Cyber Monday, shoppers may be able to use coupons on top of already established discounts, leading to further savings.
Check social media for deals
Much like email newsletters, shoppers staying connected to the store at which they shop may help them reap extra savings on Cyber Monday. Retailers may post coupon codes and even secret sales on their social media pages, such as Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr and Twitter, which only customers that follow their pages can access.
Beware of scams
Cyber Monday is a great time to get deals, but it is also a time that many unscrupulous sellers may try to take advantage of naïve shoppers. Avoid unofficial emails or social media pages offering Cyber Monday deals that seem too good to be true. Also, beware of auction sites such as eBay, where shoppers may not be protected of a seller tries to scam them.
Shop mobile instead of on a computer
Unlike Black Friday, Cyber Monday falls on a workday for most people. Don’t get caught surfing Cyber Monday deals on your work computer, shop on your mobile device instead. Additionally, many retailers offer special deals that can only be utilized through mobile shopping. Reports indicate that mobile shopping now spikes on Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
Free shipping or in-store pick up
Sometimes retailers don’t offer deals in the form of price discounts, but on how much shoppers have to spend to get their Cyber Monday loot shipped. Try to find retailers offering free shipping during Cyber Monday; many offer the option in addition to price discounts. Also try to find retailers that offer in-store pick for online shoppers. Customers can save money by avoiding shipping fees since such fees can often bring a product back up to its original price.
Keep your receipts
Make sure to save email receipts or screen capture transaction invoices on Websites while shopping on Cyber Monday. Customers don’t want to have any trouble with retailers in the event they to return an item. Shoppers should also be aware of retailer’s return policies during shopping holidays like Cyber Monday. Retailers may put sneaky “all sales are final” stipulations in the fine print while prominently displaying their price discounts.
Remember many sales go on all week
If you happen to miss the sales on Cyber Monday, don’t worry, many retailers also observe Cyber Week and sales may go on as long next Monday. Retailers may use the week to extend their Cyber Monday sales or may offer certain sales on different days of the week. Shoppers can use the week to plan ahead and shop on a day other than Cyber Monday, hopefully relieving even more stress and possibly offering even more discounts.