The last weekend before Christmas is a heady, anxious time for shoppers. The so-called "Super Saturday" sales that occur during this time offer one last chance to score a deal on that perfect present. Unfortunately, the pressure to put gifts under the tree usually leaves many shoppers at retailers' mercy.
However, that may not be the case this year: lackluster revenue from Black Friday could lead to truly super Super Saturday deals this year. Super Saturday falls on December 20 for 2014, and we've searched the DealNews archives to give you all the data you need to prepare.
Retailers Need Super Saturday Sales to be Big
This may go down as the year stores lost their power over frantic, last-minute Christmas shoppers. "With many stores shifting their openings to Thanksgiving, Black Friday sales fell 6.8% to $9.1 billion," MarketWatch reported. "Super Saturday, for the first time since 2005, is expected to edge out Black Friday as the top sales day of the year." Retailers hoping to boost their holiday sales figures may roll out some impressive deals to lure in shoppers.
In fact, we're seeing this happen already. It normally takes months for a merchant to offer Black Friday-level discounts again after November, but about 11% of the Editors' Choice deals we listed last week either matched or beat a Black Friday or Cyber Monday deal. With that in mind, let's take a closer look at what we can expect from this year's Super Saturday sales.
The Secret Effect of Shipping Deadlines on Super Saturday Deals
This year, Christmas will fall on a Thursday. That means Super Saturday falls a full five days before, well within the bounds of many stores' final shipping deadlines. Stores know that folks love to procrastinate, and may launch some of their biggest last-minute sales on Sunday. In fact, last year DealNews saw 27% more deals on Sunday than Saturday during the weekend before Christmas. That said, you shouldn't skip Saturday sales! In 2013, about 30% of the deals posted on the shopping holiday itself were hot enough to be marked Editors' Choice — compare that to just 23% on Sunday.
Mid-Size TV Deals Are Sure to Please
Although January and February will have TV deals worth waiting for, Super Saturday sees an uptick in Editors' Choice offers for this popular electronics category. In fact, about half of the TV deals we'll see the weekend before Christmas will be awesome enough to receive our Editors' recommendation.
The sets to watch out for on Super Saturday are in the mid-size classes, with screens ranging from 40" to 50". For the past two years, TVs in this class have boasted the best discounts during the shopping holiday, because they're more likely to be bundled with goodies like a soundbar, Blu-ray player, or gift card. For example, in 2013 we saw a Samsung 46" set paired with a soundbar for $260 less than the cost of buying those items separately. Look to stores like Best Buy, Walmart, and Dell for these TV savings.
Appliance Deals to Prep Your Home for In-Laws
With company coming to so many households this Christmas season, it's nice to know you can score last-minute home-prepping appliances during Super Saturday sales. Over the past two years, vacuums, heaters, and other home essentials have seen big discounts during the shopping holiday. Last year, 27% of these Super Saturday appliance offers were marked Editors' Choice; compare that to just 16% of appliance deals marked so far this year. Along with Walmart and Best Buy, Amazon is good place to grab these bargains.
Clothing Sales Are Everywhere, But Skip the Shoes
Every shopping holiday sees a decent amount of apparel sales, and Super Saturday is no exception. Last year, we saw giftable lingerie deals from Frederick's of Hollywood for as little as $2, while Banana Republic, J.Crew Factory, and Ann Taylor all took off 50% or more sitewide.
There's one caveat to our clothing sale recommendation: Don't bother shopping for footwear during Super Saturday. Last year, an abysmal 4% of shoe deals received an Editor's Choice nod during the weekend before Christmas, as compared to our 12% average to date. If you missed Cyber Monday's stellar shoe deals, you're better off waiting for the After Christmas sales. Last year, nearly half of the Boxing Day shoe deals got an Editors' Choice recommendation!
Readers, will you take advantage of this year's Super Saturday deals, or have you already wrapped up your Christmas shopping? Don't forget to consult our master list of shipping deadlines to make sure your deals arrive on time.