How to Avoid Overspending on Black Friday & Cyber Monday
We’re just a few days away from the big shopping weekend that officially begins with Black Friday and ends on Cyber Monday. I’ve seen ads for pre-Thanksgiving specials as well and as I noted in a previous post about prepping for all the bargains, it could be up to two weeks of sales. (You should probably read that post first.)
Whether clothes, accessories or beauty products are your guilty pleasure, you’ll probably be overwhelmed with all the options. Not only will you want to get things you’ve had your eye on all year, but you may be tempted to get something just because it’s 75 per cent off.
I get it. But here’s the thing: there’s life after the shopping frenzy. You’re gonna need to pay rent and buy groceries and all the adult stuff. If you want to know how to take control of your spending while grabbing some new products, here are five tips.
1. Stick to Your List
Whether you’re shopping in-store or online, you need to stay focused. If it’s not on the list, don’t buy it. Sure, impulse buys are exciting but making unplanned purchases is a surefire way to go over budget. You may even end up having to forget about things you really need. Save yourself the pain and stick to the list.
2. Track Your Purchases
Have you ever bought a bunch of stuff and assumed it added up to $100 and then realized it was twice that amount? If you aren’t keeping track of everything you buy, you can easily spend way more than you intended to. This is especially likely if you’re using a debit card or credit card. When you aren’t actually counting out cash, you can get carried away.
Consider using only cash if you’ll be making small, in-store purchases. Otherwise, make a note of each transaction on your phone, computer or a good old-fashioned piece of paper as you go.
3. Pick One Day to Shop
Yes, I know I said the sales will probably run for about two weeks but you can’t be buying things every day. That’s what the stores want and you’ll be playing right into their hands. For my Caribbean ladies, this may be mean hitting up your favourite websites on Cyber Monday since our stores don’t really do deep discounts. Buy what you need then put away your wallet and cards and ignore the ads.
4. Don’t Buy A Product Just Because It’s On Sale
If you know you won’t ever wear blue lipstick, don’t buy it just because it’s discounted. However, if you’ve always wanted to try a particular lippie brand or colour but it usually pricey, now may be a great time to get it. Sales allow you to try new things without overspending but if you buy too many “just in case” items, you’ll waste money. As a general rule, if you wouldn’t even consider buying it all full price, you probably don’t need it now.
5. Don’t Make Panic Purchases
When those emails start coming in saying “Sale ends soon”and “Final hours” or you get a reminder about your abandoned shopping cart, you may feel you need to make your purchase quickly. Don’t rush just because you think you’ll miss a deal. While some items may sell out quickly on Black Friday, you may get an even bigger discount on Cyber Monday or the days following. It’s a bit of a gamble but make sure you think through every purchase.
Cash In On Deals Without Overspending
There’s a lot of hype surrounding this time of year and it’s easy to get caught up. You need to keep your budget in mind. If you only have $200 to spend, that’s what you have. Don’t let retailers or other people convince you to go overboard. Have fun but keep your head on!