Expert shoppers are patient…
If you’re like many consumers, then you probably know of certain brands or stores where you prefer to shop. Pay close attention and chances are you’ll find that the same promotions occur again and again, and multiple times per year.
Although deals can happen any time during the year, there are some best-kept secrets. “Jewelry retailers often experience a lull during summer because there aren’t many special celebrations,” Woroch observers. “You may find good sales on jewelry such as precious stones, watches and various gold pieces,” she adds.
Many consumers already look for technology deals on Black Friday, but a less-familiar — and less crowded — time to shop for tech is over the summer. You could find a great deal online, but don’t forget to check prices at local retailers, too. They may try to get in on Prime Day action with great deals on televisions, audio equipment, gaming devices and more.
And for deals throughout the year, Woroch follows her preferred retailers for staples.
“Old Navy and GAP are always running great sales site-wide online during the week. If I need to purchase new clothing for my daughter, I’ll hold off until I see this additional discount on the entire purchase and then I will only purchase items that are on sale or on clearance to save the most.”
…And they think outside the box
Found a great price and ready to whip out your wallet? Hold on, big spender. A little extra effort can go a long way, and you probably won’t be surprised that price-comparison shopping is a must.
“I really think everything has become a commodity, so I look at the sales and see what’s happening. I always gut check it with an online shopping search too,” Madhok says.
Another pro tip: “Stack” your deals and buy discounted gift cards online. According to Madhok, stacking a deal with gift cards is as easy as visiting a reseller such as GiftcardGranny.com — and that can pay off big.
“If I’m going to buy something big like a lawnmower or outdoor furniture, buying these discounted gift cards is a great way to stack a deal. It’s also good to look at the cashback deal on Ebates. If you use a gift card sometimes they’ll have double cash back,” she says.
Expert shoppers also aren’t afraid to explore pre-owned and gently-used options. Unearthing hidden gems at consignment stores and tag sales can yield huge bargains – especially on expensive goods such as furnishings, holiday decorations and lawn equipment.
For Madhok, it’s all about finding last season’s deals and online discounts. “I like to look for last season’s items and last season’s styles,” she says. Consider looking “on eBay for last season’s styles,” she adds, “those things are much less expensive.” Same goes for consignment companies like The RealReal. “I have all sorts of notifications set up that I check every morning. I’ve found deals on things like a dress that dropped from $500 to $70,” shares Madhok.
Like Madhok, Bodge also has her own method to maximize savings. “I use multiple ways to try to save, but I am not willing to do anything that requires a lot of time and effort,” Bodge says. “For ease of use and success rate, I use a combination of store loyalty apps or coupon apps and browser extensions.”