Black Friday may be considered one of the best days of the year to do your holiday shopping, but as online shopping has started to grow, so has the popularity of Cyber Monday.
Cyber Monday is exclusively for online shoppers and can be just as thrilling as a trip out on Black Friday. If wiggling through crowds, getting up early, and waiting in line just isn’t your thing, then Cyber Monday can be a great time to do your holiday shopping!
I spoke about this topic on my Fox Segment. Watch the replay here:
Here is the ultimate guide to how to shop Cyber Monday:
Create an Account Today
You don’t want to waste precious time filling in your shipping address and billing credit or debit card in order to check out online. Go to the store’s site NOW and set up an account.
If you want to snatch the best deal, you need to have all that stuff set up ahead of time. I was shopping online at Ulta and missed out on several items because, by the time I filled in my shipping and billing info, the items were bought right out from under me!
Watch for Restocking Fees
Make sure to check the return policy before you start the online check out process and could miss out on the deal with any extra delay!
Look for any “restocking fees”.
Plus, if you purchase from an online retailer, you need to pay attention that they will allow you to return items to the store (therefore saving you money to ship the items back to them).
Those two policies could make the difference between shopping at a different store!
Be Online As Soon As The Deals Start
While in-store shoppers have to compete with the people in their area to grab the best deal, you are competing for the same thing at a global level online. This means you’re going to step up your game to get the deals you’ve been seeking!
I recommend having your computer ready to go with browser tabs open 10 minutes before the sale starts.
It’s easy to get swept up in all the excitement of the shopping trip, but before you get near to hitting the checkout button, make sure to look up customer reviews on Amazon and make sure what you’re buying is worth it.
You don’t want to waste your money on cheap or impractical gifts no one will use just because there’s a good sale.
When I’m doing my Cyber Monday Shopping, I keep Amazon open in another tab so I can check reviews (and the price too) before making my purchases.
Load Your Cart Ahead
Many online shoppers may not know this, but at most websites, you can put the items you plan to buy in your cart before the deals even begin.
That way, you are ready to just hit the “refresh” button for your cart and then you can click “Checkout” the moment the discounts go live.
IMPORTANT NOTE: if you’ve hit refresh and don’t see the item in your cart at the discounted price you were expecting, it might have a different UPC Code and you’ll have to manually search for the item after the sale is live.
When making your game plan, don’t forget to take shipping costs into account if you don’t think you’ll meet the minimum. The last thing you want to do is have to delve back into the deals to find $5 more worth of items to meet the FREE Shipping Requirement!
If you fall below the free shipping threshold, look for a potential “ship to store” option so you don’t have to add any extra unnecessary expense.
The ship-to-store option will also save you time by allowing you to pick up the items right at Customer Service instead of wandering through the store to locate everything (and potentially spending more money!).
Even on Cyber Monday, you can still stack coupons to get significant savings!
Hundreds of stores will offer percentage or even dollar off coupons that are good for just one day.
Check your inbox, and even your mailbox, before hitting the websites! Some in-store coupons can be used online too giving you bonus savings!
Here’s How To Make Your Cyber Monday Plan:
- Set up your online accounts to include shipping address and “saved” credit/debit cards for faster checkout.
- Compare items you plan to buy to decide which store you want to shop at first.
- Make a master list of all the stores you need to browse on Cyber Monday in the order of importance so you don’t get overwhelmed when the shopping actually starts.
- Research restocking fees at the stores where you want to shop. This might change where you do your shopping!
- Make a note next to each store for any FREE Shipping Thresholds (or for any coupon codes that will be valid on the date of the sale). That way you are not surprised when you are hurrying to checkout. Remember to note any Ship-To-Store options too!
- Since you’ve created an online account, you’ll most likely receive a promotional email with a discount code to entice you to shop on Cyber Monday. Note that coupon code next to the store so you don’t waste valuable time looking for it later. Make sure to check your snail mail inbox too!
- Pre-load the items you want to buy in your “online shopping cart” so you’ll be ready to buy when the sale goes live.
IMPORTANT NOTE: if you don’t see the item discounted in your cart, it might have a different UPC Code and you’ll have to manually search for the item after the sale is live.
- Set an alarm to be at your computer at least 10 minutes before the first sale starts (and set up tabs with any other stores you are purchasing from).
Best Items To Buy On Cyber Monday
Cyber Monday has to compete with the sales of Black Friday. The best things to buy are typically items that heavy to ship to stores to keep in stock for you to buy such as:
- Garden Items (firepit anyone?)
- Office Furniture
There are also a few items that notoriously just have cheaper discounts on Cyber Monday:
- Shoes or Boots
- Vacation packages or Travel plans (you could get up to 50% Off just by shopping on that day!)
- A Kindle or other e-reader from Amazon
- High-End Makeup such as Stila, NARS, Bobbi Brown, Kiehl’s, Clinique and Benefit
The best part of Cyber Monday is the ability to do all your Christmas shopping from the comfort of your home in your pajamas. Well, maybe that’s not the best part, the deals you’ll score might actually be the best part, but it’s hard to turn down the ability to save money from the comfort of your own home!
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