6 Ways You're Doing Black Friday Wrong

If you only shop on Black Friday — or avoid it entirely — you could miss out on the best bargains.
Black Friday Shoe Sale

It's easy to get excited about big Black Friday sales, but you could be approaching this shopping extravaganza all wrong. If you want to grab the best bargains during Black Friday — and throughout the Black Friday season — be sure you aren't making these common shopping mistakes.

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You're Not Shopping on Black Friday

Black Friday gets a lot of hype. So much hype, in fact, that you may assume it's overhyped and skip out on shopping entirely. But the numbers don't lie: Black Friday 2017 had more than double the number of sales of any other shopping holiday this past year (outside of Thanksgiving, Cyber Monday, and July's Prime Day).

Speaking of Cyber Monday and Thanksgiving, between those three November shopping days in 2017, we posted the most deals on Black Friday. On top of that, more than 30% of those Black Friday sales were cream-of-the-crop, Editors' Choice picks.

SEE ALSO: Thanksgiving & Black Friday 2018 Store Hours: Know When to Go!

If you ignore Black Friday, you're going to miss some of the best sales of the year. Even if you decide there's nothing you need on Black Friday, it's worth reviewing the ads to look for must-have bargains.

You're Buying Anything With a Sale Sign

Are all the Black Friday deals worth it? While there are plenty of good (and great!) deals on Black Friday, not everything is a steal. As we mentioned before, despite Black Friday having more sales than you're likely to find on any other day of the year, only about 30% of deals received our Editors' Choice mark in 2017.

That doesn't mean the rest of the sales are bad, but it does mean you should do a bit of homework to be sure you're actually getting a good deal — and our Black Friday resources can help by highlighting the best offers.

You're ONLY Shopping on Black Friday

Though not shopping on Black Friday can be a big mistake for deal hunters, only shopping on Black Friday can be just as much of a problem. Despite the high number of sales on this shopping holiday, you won't see fantastic prices on every product. And even though we posted the most deals on Black Friday itself in 2017, both Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday featured more Editors' Choice deals.

If you're looking for electronics, Thanksgiving tends to have better deals than Black Friday.

Still, that doesn't mean you should ditch Black Friday entirely. Throughout the Black Friday season, there are clear trends as to when different products go on sale. Black Friday will likely be the best day to get deals on kitchen goods, clothes, tools, beauty products, toys, laptops, and appliances.

But if you're looking for most types of electronics, Thanksgiving tends to have better deals. We're predicting Turkey Day will have the best deals on smartphones, speakers, tablets, headphones, and video games in 2018. And if you want to buy a television or book your next vacation? Cyber Monday is probably the best time to shop.

Smart deal hunters will take the time to check the best bargains this week and next week, because the best sales could pop up at any time.

You're Disregarding Doorbuster Deals

Though we just said Cyber Monday should have the best TV sales of the season, there's one big caveat: doorbuster deals. Typically, doorbusters are hugely discounted items available in very limited quantities — and you won't find them on Cyber Monday.

SEE ALSO: Our Guides to the Top Black Friday Retailers

Among the doorbuster TV deals we expect this year are 32" sets for $80 to $100, 55" TVs priced from $275, 60" TVs as low as $498, and 70"-plus sets as low as $850. And while TVs make popular doorbusters, expect to see these limited-quantity types of sales across all product categories.

The big doorbuster deals might only be available in-store. To get them, you'll need to make a plan. Because they tend to sell out fast, you'll want to be in line in front of the store before opening, which can mean braving miserable weather. Be sure to find out the store's hours!

You're Ignoring Online Sales

Online shopping isn't only for Cyber Monday. Though some amazing Black Friday deals are only available in-store, you can still find Black Friday doorbusters online. For Black Friday 2017, more than 70% of the online retailers we saw offered completely free shipping or free shipping with a low minimum order (often between $25 and $50), so shopping online usually won't cost you any more than shopping in-store.

Last Black Friday, more than 70% of the online retailers we saw offered completely free shipping or free shipping with a low minimum order.

You Think There's Only One Best Place to Shop

Price matching can happen during the holiday shopping season, but that doesn't mean you can pick one retailer and ignore the rest. It's particularly easy for bargain hunters to gravitate toward Amazon. (After all, Amazon has started giving everyone free shipping for the holidays.)

SEE ALSO: Your Black Friday Price Match Guide for 2018

But while Amazon often has more products on sale than the competition, other stores will offer their own selection of Editors' Choice-quality deals. Mega-retailers Walmart and Target will both have plenty of Black Friday deals.

And if you're looking for electronics, Best Buy and Dell always have some real bargains. If you want the very best deals this season, you can't limit your shopping to just one store. Whatever you're buying, be sure to shop around.

Readers, what do you think are the biggest mistakes people make during Black Friday? Let us know in the comments below!

Contributing Writer

Originally working in IT, Elizabeth now writes on tech, gaming, and general consumer issues. Her articles have appeared in USA Today, Time, AOL, PriceGrabber, and more. She has been one of DealNews' most regular contributors since 2013, researching everything from vacuums to renters insurance to help consumers.
DealNews may be compensated by companies mentioned in this article. Please note that, although prices sometimes fluctuate or expire unexpectedly, all products and deals mentioned in this feature were available at the lowest total price we could find at the time of publication (unless otherwise specified).
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If you've been doing this for 10 years. I am sure you didn't miss anything. I just feel like it gets worse year after year. If Costco can make $1.50 on hot dogs & Sodas, you can make a profit by setting up a Hot Cocoa & Hot dogs stand on Black Friday outside the store!!! By the way, weather forecast not looking good so far. Hope you got some extra hand warmers handy!!
I agree with Allyson. Black Friday shopping is an experience. I went to Target last year just to see what the deals and fun were all about. The absolute best part was meeting people from my community. I got there about 2 hours before opening, it was like a tailgate, card games and some played football in the parking lot. Target manager brought out hot chocolate, the Kwik Star (gas station) next door brought over cookies for everyone. Target was so well organized that they gave the first 200 people in line a number and let 1-20, 21-40, etc., go in at 5 minute intervals. It was a fun time.

As for deals, most good deals are online. However, GREAT deals are in the store. I picked up two Nintendo 2DS XL's last year at Target for $45 each. Online they were selling for $125. Too each there own, be safe and have fun.
I'm with Hoslerg in saying "ZohsiodKxjxJncja"
Shopping Black Friday deals in store isn't "shopping wrong". If it's something someone's never done & it's something someone wants to do, let them experience it. My husband & I did in-store Black Friday for about 10 years & we had fun doing it!

In general, I'm not wild about long lines & crowds, but I didn't mind them on Black Friday. It seemed like people knew to expect long lines & didn't have an attitude when the lines creeped along.

We have different shopping needs now so we can do both online shopping & in-store shopping if we choose. Amazon's free shipping incentive isn't the determining factor; sometimes I'd rather opt for free in-store pickup so I don't have to worry about my purchases getting stolen. No, we don't have the Ring doorbell. Latest reviews don't seem good.
Thank you so much for your sharing ! It is really vital to make a smart shopping, online or in-store. I have so many stuff to buy, but I need to figure out which is essential, and which is impulsive consumption. Smart shopping, better life.
More to life then worrying about deal I might miss out because I didn't shop on Black Friday.
You are doing Black Friday wrong if you are physically going and standing in-line when almost every deal is available online. Plus, standing in-line means you will spend hours in one store and miss out on other deals. The best way to do Black Friday is sitting in front of your computer.