Today we are going to talk about shopping strategies to help you through the holiday season. Starting now, you are going to be inundated with “Black Friday Special” many of them starting in November. The retailers want you in a “shopping frenzy” early and often. This is the time of year they make 50%+ of their sales. Their profit depends on your buying habits.
Shopping Strategies To Help You Through The Holiday Season
**This post contains affiliate links. When you shop through my links, it helps support my website (at no additional cost to you), so thank you!
Start With YOUR Christmas List
How much stuff do we really need? As I am going through my home and downsizing, I realize that I just don’t need a bunch of stuff. One way you can help minimize unwanted or needed gifts is to make a list of things you need or want for Christmas. Don’t do they “oh… I don’t need anything”. It is the season of giving, and the giver wants to give you something you will like or need.
If you have gone through my Wardrobe Basics & Beauty series, you should have a good idea of where holes are in your wardrobe. This is a great opportunity to pick out a new coat/hangbag/ or sweater and add it to your list.
Create A Christmas List On Amazon
Amazon is one-stop online shopping. Many box retailers and Mom & Pop stores sale via Amazon. As we get closer to the holidays you will see Amazon’s Deals Of The Day, Black Friday Specials, Cyber Monday Sales… and so on. Sometimes these deals are good, other times they are the same as you can find anywhere on sale. Your job is NOT to get distracted and shop from your list.
Instructions On How To Create An Amazon Wish & Shopping List
How To Add A Gift To A Wish List
**Encourage others in your family that you have on your gift list to make a Christmas Wish List on Amazon. Even if you don’t purchase from Amazon, you will have an idea of items they want or need.
Old Fashion Way Of Making Wish List
This one works well if the gift you want is not on Amazon. Make a list on paper, take a photo and send it in a text or email- DONE!
Make A Christmas Shopping Gift List And Set A Budget
Don’t just go out in the wild world of shopping without a plan and a budget. Family and friends do not want you do go into debt for the holiday season.
Veteran’s Day Sales- Some Better Than Black Friday
I am already seeing 30-40% off for Veteran’s Day Sales. This is a great way to get ahead on your holiday shopping. Veteran’s Day Sales usually has fall merchandised discounted and some retailers already are giving Black Friday Deals for Veteran’s Day.
Think Out Of The Box For Gift Ideas
If you have those people on your give list that have everything or are hard to buy for, think out of the box. Gift cards are great but sometimes they feel really impersonal.
My Favorite Things Bag
Oprah has her Favorite Things gifts, so I have taken her idea and brought it down to a smaller scale. One of my favorite gifts to give is My Favorite Things Bag. These can be small items that you really like and enjoy. Favorite candle, tea, lipstick, fuzzy socks, lotion… and the list goes on. You can even make them themed- bath time, bedtime, favorite books, favorite wines, cozy winter night, game night…. etc.
Photo Memory Books
This has been my most popular gift. Mostly because it is not only the gift of memorizing but the gift of your time to put it together. And, it does take some time and thought.
There are several companies that do photo books. The one I use is called MIXBOOKS I have been very pleased with the quality and turn around time. They are always having 50% off deals. You can also get photo Christmas card from them too.
If you had a wedding or took a big trip, this is a great gift for holidays, but they have those memorizes stored for a lifetime.
Gift Of Activities/ Travel/ Entertaining
Gift of experiences if one of my most popular gifts. If your family likes to travel- gift cards for airlines, hotels, restaurants. Several people I know have forgone the traditional gift-giving and thought REALLY BIG and their gift is a family trip after the holidays.
If that is a little more than you can spend, think locally for activities and restaurants they would like to try. If they like to go to the movies, movie passes are a great gift. Starbucks is always a huge hit.
****Don’t forget to check your credit card rewards programs. I was able to get great gift cards using my point- WINNING
There are so many good subscription boxes out there. Many you can buy just one box to give as a gift. My Subscription Addiction has reviews of the boxes to help you chose one that might make the perfect gift. These also make great birthday gifts for those who have those December/January birthdays that often time get forgotten.
Shop Locally-Support Small Businesses
I try to support my local businesses during the holidays. They have to compete with big-box retailers as well as your Amazon/Target/Walmart. These are people in your community that support your community- show them the love! Local farmer’s markets usually have great locally made crafts/honey/jellies/ relishes that make FABULOUS hostess gifts.
Utilize Money Saving Tools When Shopping Online
I am LOVING Rakuten, a cash-back online tool to use when shopping. Many of the major retailers are have 10/15% cash-back during the holiday season. That is like an extra coupon on top of any other savings you use. Learn more about Rakuten and how to sign up HERE
I also use another online savings tool, Honey. Honey finds online coupons for you. If they can’t find coupons, you might get what is called “honey gold” which can add up to gift cards from retailers such as Amazon and Target (several others too). You can not use both Rakuten and Honey on the same website.
Remember, these online saving tools do not cost you anything. Winning!
Shop Early, Then STOP!
Enjoy The Rest Of The Holiday Season- Stress- Free (at least from shopping)
You may not be ready to shop yet, but I hope this post gets the thought processes going. If you will have a plan, you will save money, not overspend, and not get stressed out. If you are an empty nester, downsizing may be the name of the game if it is with gifts, decorating, or even the events themselves.
Tomorrow is all about preparing your home for the change in seasons/ weather/ and pre-preparations for holiday decorating.