Day 4 - Shopping the Sales {12 Days of Being Organized for the Holidays} | From Overwhelmed to Organized: Day 4 - Shopping the Sales {12 Days of Being Organized for the Holidays}

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Day 4 - Shopping the Sales {12 Days of Being Organized for the Holidays}

So we've made our holiday to-do list, planned what we will be giving everyone, and sent out Christmas cards.  Now it's time to start shopping!  And what better time than this week with Pre-Black Friday sales, Black Friday sales, Small Business Saturday sales, and Cyber Monday sales!  To help you make the most of those sales, it's important to have a plan for shopping, so today I'll give you some tips to help you maximize your time and your dollar.

Now first I just have to say, I'm not a coupon or deal-finding blogger.  And I don't normally promote a lot of sales.  So don't go thinking I'm changing everything up here!

But I do know that many of you will be spending a lot of time and money in the next few days, buying the perfect gifts for the loved ones on your list.  So I want to help you be as organized as possible when you do that.  Hopefully these tips will help you feel less overwhelmed while you shop!

1.  Set a budget and write it out

This is SO important so you don't end up with huge credit cards bills over the next few months.  Determine what you want to spend in total on holiday gifts, and then break that down for each person on your list.  That way, if you go over on one person's gift, you know that you have to save that amount on someone else's gift.

You can include your budget on the gift list you created last week so you have it with you while you're shopping.

If you'd like more tips on the financial side of Christmas, and for a free printable Christmas budget gift list, check out this post (link below image).

Organize and Decorate Everything

There are lots of other free printable Christmas gift-budget worksheets available on my Christmas Organizing board on Pinterest so check them out and choose one that will work best for you!

2.  Do your research

Spend some time going through all the flyers and online ads to figure out where the best deals are for the items on your shopping list.  Also make note of what times the sales start so you can ensure they have the gifts you're buying in stock.

You can check online maps or pull out a good ol' fashioned paper map of your area to help you figure out the best route if you're going to several different stores.

Having a plan of where you're going and approximately when will help you maximize your time and minimize frustration.
    If you're getting overwhelmed looking at all the ads, download this free printable to help you keep track of them all! (link is below the image)

    Clean Mama

    3.  While you're doing your research, consider whether you want to shop online instead of in-store

    There are a lot of great deals online now for Black Friday (and of course for Cyber Monday).  Some match or even beat the in-store prices.

    The great part about online shopping is you don't have to fight with the crowds or arrive hours ahead of the store opening.  Online stores will still run out of stock, but if you know when items will go on sale you can try to scoop them up quickly from the comfort of your couch while you're in your jammies, sipping a hot cocoa.  OK, maybe it's not quite that serene, but it beats the crowds :)

    Make sure you have an active account created with each store you plan to order from so you don't have to waste time setting that up when you're trying to check out.

    Also, check online for other coupons or codes that you may be able to use on the sale prices as well (especially deals for free delivery!).

    The choice is yours... weigh out the pros and cons and decide what works best for you!

    4.  Bring a friend or family member along and have fun with it

    You can keep each other company in lines or take turns standing in line and shopping.  You can divide and conquer nearby stores and then meet up for coffee afterwards to celebrate your savings.  

    5.  Be patient!

    Things can get kinda crazy on Black Friday, so an extra does of patience will go a long way to making your shopping trip enjoyable instead of overwhelming.  

    Update: I thought of 2 more tips for you!

    6.  Don't buy anything that's not on your list, no matter how good a deal it is!

    The whole point of making a list is so you know what you want to buy and what your budget is.  Stores want to entice you to buy all kinds of other things too, so they offer all kids of great deals.  If you end up buying things that aren't on your list, you'll go over budget (because you're still going to want to buy the items you'd originally planned to give the people on your list).  And, if you don't really need something, it will just clutter up your home.

    7.  Check the small print and double-check your receipts

    There are often exceptions for certain deals so make sure you look at all the fine print.  You don't want to stand in line for a long time and then get to the cash register only to find out you can't get the deal you expected.  Also, it's busy at Black Friday sales (of course!) so mistakes can be made.  Look at the register as the cashier is ringing up your purchases and check your receipt to make sure you got all the deals you were supposed to get. 

    I hope these tips help you get organized for all the deals coming up!  It can be an exciting time and many people finish all their shopping on or around Black Friday.  That would really give you time to enjoy the rest of the holiday season!  

    If you're looking for other holiday organizing ideas, check out previous posts I've written on the subject in the Organizing tab at the top of the page - choose the Christmas submenu.

    Do you shop on Black Friday?  How do you plan out where you'll go and when?  What kinds of deals have you found?

    Happy organizing!

    Here are all the posts in the 12 Days of Being Organized for the Holidays series!

    I link up at these great parties - Check them out!

    Some of the links in this post are affiliate links.  This means that if you purchase something after following one of these links, I will receive a small commission, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you for helping support this blog and its associated costs!