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Consumer experts suggest shopping early on Black Friday, expecting some big deals from retailers

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Posted at 6:35 AM, Nov 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-23 07:58:54-05

TAMPA, Fla. — “For anyone who waited because we’re all trained to expect the best of the best on Black Friday, there’s definitely going to be deals,” said Kristin McGrath, Editor for The Real Deal blog for RetailMeNot.

While we’ve been telling you to shop early this year, you may still be okay if you take advantage of sales this weekend.

“You’re still several weeks out and as long as the thing you are buying is in stock you should be alright,” said McGrath.

Experts say there are still going to be some deals, even though retailers have been trying to find ways to work around supply chain issues for the past few weeks.

“Kohls and Target for example are going to drop some deals that are available only for those who start their shopping on Thanksgiving and Black Friday online. Amazon isn’t even starting its official Black Friday sale until Thanksgiving and it runs on Thanksgiving and Black Friday,” said McGrath.

Even with the challenges, there will be some doorbusters this year.

While many stores haven’t released exactly what those will be yet, experts say we can definitely expect to see big discounts on electronics.

“There will be likely a lot of TV deals. It being Black Friday there’s a couple retailers that will probably drop some tantalizing big screen TV deals,” said McGrath.

There’s one item, in particular, this year that’s especially popular.

“Definitely going to be deals on headphones, earbuds, we’re already seeing some of those really, really good deals sell out from the retailers who set their Black Friday sales early,” said McGrath.

That doesn’t mean another retailer isn’t going to come in and match that low price on the same product. So, if you see something you want sold out at one store, check a few others.

New gaming systems are also being hugely sought after this year.

A few stores did restock them this week, and they might possibly restock them again through Black Friday and the holiday season but don’t expect them to be on sale.

“If you see one of the new Xboxes or PlayStation or the new Nintendo Switch Oled in stock period that’s the deal. Buy it, don’t wait for a discount,” said McGrath.

Since products are limited this year, you may be better off shopping early in the day on Black Friday and consider going in person if you feel comfortable.

“That’s one way to ensure that you’re going to get the item in hand and be able to take it home with you,” said McGrath.

“Another option if you’d rather not go inside the store is to take advantage of curbside pick up or in-store pick up. Yes, the item has to be in stock generally at most retailers for you to be able to utilize that feature but it’s a great way, it’s a great middle-ground. You can still get your shopping done online but then you can get it as soon as the same day and have it in hand,” she added.

People are worried about potential shipping delays. We saw them last year and they’re projected to be even worse this year.

The biggest tip: make sure what you’re buying is in stock because some retailers will still allow you to purchase an item online even if it’s not immediately available.

“If you’re doing anything custom, like you’re building out laptop or customizing a cheap Black Friday doorbuster laptop to upgrade it a bit, that can add some lead time and so you need to look at that shipping calculation that the retailer is going to give you to make sure it arrives on time,” said McGrath.