Saving Money

5 Black Friday Shopping Tips to Help You Save Money and Win BIG!

November 8, 2022
Discover top five Black Friday shopping tips to avoid overspending and wasting money, including understanding the bigger picture, setting a budget, making a list, reserving an impulse budget, and avoiding going into debt.
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Britt & Laurie Anne
Two female investors in their 30s with a collective net wealth of over $6 million+
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The holidays are a time for giving…but they’re also known as a time for heavy spending. And there’s no better example of that than Black Friday. It is literally a holiday devoted entirely to shopping.

Black Friday can be a great chance to score amazing deals on things you need to buy – but it can also be a chance to waste a lot of money on things you don’t really need.

Today, I’m going to give you my top five Black Friday shopping tips.

But first, hold on to your credit card…

First and foremost, it is important to know your top goal going into Black Friday. Just because things are on sale does not mean the potential savings is worth throwing off your budget or derailing progress toward your financial goals.

So, if it would be better for you NOT to shop on Black Friday, the answer is really simple: DO NOT SHOP THAT WEEKEND.

Do not open emails in your inbox that use “Black Friday” or sale in the subject line. Do not go to stores online or in person. Better yet, do a digital detox that weekend. Don’t watch commercials, and please, for the love of God, do not go to Target.

You have to avoid the entire environment. Commit to that and don’t even read the rest of this article if you don’t want to spend money on Black Friday.

Ok, now here are my Black Friday shopping tips…

Now, if you do want to shop on Black Friday, but you don’t want to overspend, keep reading, because it’s important to go in with a strategy both to AVOID being manipulated into buying too much AND how to snag good deals on the things you do need.

Here are my 5 tips to build a Black Friday budget:

  1. Understand the bigger picture

First - you need proper context. You need to understand what is truly happening on Black Friday.

You may not realize it, but on Black Friday you are at war. You are going into battle. Not against the other shoppers -  you are at war with the retailers and the territory you are fighting over is the money in your wallet. And they have been preparing for months for this war and they have far more resources than you do.

Companies know how to manipulate you into pulling more money out of your wallet than you expected to. They pour thousands of dollars into researching how to grab your attention, how to make you feel like you’re getting a great deal, how to make you throw as many last-minute items in as possible while you’re standing in line to check out…EVERYTHING is designed to make you spend as much as possible.

That’s why it’s important to make a plan ahead of time so that you’re actually getting good deals and aren’t losing money.

2. Know how much you have to spend

Put a line item in your budget for Black Friday shopping. Decide how much money you have to put towards material purchases without derailing yourself from achieving your important financial goals.

A few months before Black Friday, I start to decrease my spending. Instead of buying new things I write down what it is that I wanted to buy. The money for this goes into my Black Friday budget line and the item goes on my “Black Friday List,” which is my next tip.

3. Make a list of what you want to buy

Know in advance what you are going to buy and what it is going to cost you. Make a list of things you were planning to buy in the next few months anyway.

I think about things that are wearing out around my home, upcoming Christmas and birthday gifts, anything I’ll need for the winter season.

Then I start my research a few weeks in advance by Googling the name of my favorite stores and the world “Black Friday sale” with the year and find out a lot of information about what sales are being planned. For example, “Best Buy Black Friday Sale 2022” and I build out a budget — what the item is and where I want to buy it.

This helps me know how much what I want is going to cost and if it is more than I have to spend, I can make some prioritization decisions and choose which things I’ll wait on and which things I am going to get now.

4. Reserve some spending for an “impulse budget”

This is for things you don’t yet know you want, but you know you’ll want ‘em once you see ‘em

Look, if you’re out shopping on Black Friday it’s because you like shopping. Otherwise, it is like the worst day in the world to go for a casual shop… so if you are someone who thinks shopping is fun, then give yourself a budget to just have some fun with.

If you want some freedom to snag up impulse purchases of things “you didn’t know you needed until you saw the omg this deal is too ridiculous to pass up sale,” then set a budget for those kinds of purchases as well.

For example, if I know that what I need is to buy new towels for my house on Black Friday and they’re going to cost me $100, but I also want some freedom to have fun while shopping, I’ll budget another $50 to spend IF and ONLY IF something catches my eye.

If you can, only bring cash so you can’t spend more than you’re planning to.

Don’t buy things JUST because they are a good deal. So if something falls into your “Impulse Budget” ask yourself these questions:

  1. Would I want this thing even if it wasn’t on sale?
  2. Will I use this?
  3. Is it worth the cost?
  4. Does this honor one of my personal values?

If the answers to all those questions are “yes” and it fits within your impulse budget…then you can buy it.

My last and most important tip:

5. Under NO circumstances should you go into debt to buy something on Black Friday

It is not worth it. This is not saving money. This is spending beyond your means and going further into debt.

Do not get confused: Losing the war against the retailers looks like spending more than you budgeted. Going into debt this Black Friday is not only losing this year’s war! It is losing the war for future you too!  

So absolutely. Do. Not. Put. Anything. On. Your credit card that you will not be able to pay off this billing cycle.

I hope that this helps you have a fun and frugal Black Friday!

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