In recent years, there has been a great debate between shoppers who are out to save a buck during the holiday season. Both Black Friday and Cyber Monday offer great deals, but it can be confusing how to decide on where to invest your money-saving efforts! This blog post will hopefully simplify that process for you and make it easier when strategizing your holiday shopping. Because we all need some simplicity in our life, right?!
Black Friday is a tradition that will never die! No matter how popular online shopping becomes, there will always be those crazies willing to risk it all to save a buck. The early mornings, chaotic lines, and aggressive behavior has become characteristic of the day after Thanksgiving. Doesn’t sound like much fun to me! Haha. Despite the craziness that ensues, there are redeeming qualities that make all the strife worth while. There are deals to find, and that is something a Frugalista’s heart is always after!
- You can see exactly what you’re buying!
I’m all about the quality of my purchase and that is hard to judge when you’re purchasing online. When buying in store, you can try on your purchase and better assess the value to see if it really is that great of a deal. Ads can be deceiving! That $30 “cashmere” sweater, might end up being nothing but synthetic wool. So be careful!
- No cost of shipping and handling!
Although many stores offer free shipping and handling on Cyber Monday, it is often under the guise of a minimum purchase. Sometimes this encourages you to spend more than you’d like. I’m definitely guilty of that! If you just want to buy one item here and there from various stores, Black Friday is more up your alley. You won’t have to pay the sometimes hefty shipping and handling fees for minimal purchases.
- Easy returns!
This is my least favorite part of shopping online. I often buy way more than I originally intended leaving me with lots of items I regret purchasing, which means RETURNS! Ordering online from brick and mortar stores make returns easy, but many others have less convenient policies. You don’t want to have to pay extra to return, or even worse, forget to return the item!
- Great savings on items that you can’t always score a deal online!
Many stores still prioritize Black Friday as their main sale of the season. For a lot of big ticket items, Black Friday is the way to go. The deepest discounts on certain items can only be found on Black Friday. Door busters are also a common Black Friday deal. These are limited deeply discounted items that are only available during the whee hours of the morning for those willing to sacrifice the sleep!
- It’s a hassle.
Need I say more? No one enjoys waking up early to fight crowds just to save a few dollars, or do they? 😉 With limited inventory, you might aren’t even guaranteed to the item you’re seeking.
- Insecure Inventory.
Even if you bust your tail to get to the stores early in the morning you may not be lucky enough to snag the products you were after. There’s always those who are willing to stay up all night and bust down the doors of Walmart. If you’re after a specific item and not looking to sacrifice precious time with your loved ones on Thanksgiving, Black Friday might not be for you.
- Loss of time.
In the midst of the holiday shopping frenzy, we can’t forget the true purpose for the season, spending precious time with loved ones and friends. Not only do many Black Friday sales require early wake ups, but there’s often long lines and lots of traffic.
Cyber Monday has emerged in recent years, with online shopping growing increasingly popular. A couple days after the mania of Black Friday, Cyber Monday is it’s more convenient counterpart. With thousands of online retailers offering great deals and extra discounts, it allows for frugal holiday shopping from the comfort of your own home! However, it can be a gamble as well!
- It’s easier and faster!
You can quickly browse between stores by switching tabs, instead of sitting in traffic and fighting crowds at the mall. With one click you can complete a huge shopping haul and all from the comfort of your living room or office. 😉
- Greater variety of retailers!
Many of the best Cyber Monday deals are offered at certain only online stores, like Amazon and Zappos! More retailer options, means greater access to more sales and savings. You can also shop at retailers that might not be within your local vacinity. Even though they don’t have Dillard’s on the East Coast, that doesn’t stop me from perusing their online site! 😉
- Different and more significant discounts!
Both days are big on the discounts, but not all are created equal. Black Friday usually offers discounts on certain items specifically, which can be great if you are looking for big ticket items. Cyber Monday is great for generalized discounts that include all items, such as an extra percent off your entire purchase or free shipping.
- You don’t get to try on or see the product in person.
Online shopping can always be a gamble. You have to be confident in your purchases or have expeirence with the item. When getting your order in the mail it can end up being a great disspaointment. Some of my best online purchases come after scoping out the item in store beforehand.
- Inconveince of returns.
The last thing you want to have to worry about during the busy holiday season is repackaging purchases and having to make a visit to the post office. If you’re stuck with buyers remorse, this is one downside of Cyber Monday.
- Continued competition for the best deals.
The hottest sales and items can quickly sell out, or even worse be on back order leaving you in a pickle during the Christmas season. Online orders can be chancy, with orders sometimes being canceled due to lack of inventory to meet high demands.
Whether you’re a Black Friday or Cyber Monday gal, the bottom line is choose what works for you! Decide what type of deal you’re after and strategize from there. Either way, there’s deals to find and money to save!
Cheers to the beginning of the Holiday season!