Huge discounts are up for grabs in the Black Friday sales – here’s how to supersize the bargains, score the best deals and steer clear of scammers.
Like the sound of 30% discounts? How about price cuts of 40%?
It’s all up for grabs in the mega-discount Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales, which kick off on November 24.
With Aussies expected to spend more than $6.36 billion over the 4-day price blitz, we’ve put together five strategies to supersize your savings.
1. Be first to know about Black Friday discounts
While a few retailers have announced their discounts, plenty of big-name retailers are keeping their bargains under wraps until the main event.
Be among the first to know how much you could save by signing up for retailers’ alerts. It can give you a head start over other shoppers.
2. Use tech to find the best deals
Skip the sting of missing the best bargains. Jump onto Google Shopping to compare prices, or use apps like ShopSavvy to know if the items in your online cart have the lowest possible prices.
3. Ramp up the savings with cashback rewards
Ramp up the Black Friday savings by shopping through cashback sites like Cashrewards and ShopBack.
It costs nothing to join, but you could get as much as 7% of the value of your purchases returned as a cashback reward paid straight to your bank account.
Almost one-third of Australians are planning to use cashbacks to cut costs this Christmas, and that’s seen banks such as Westpac integrate ShopBack offers into their banking app.
4. Use reward points, pay nothing at all
Only one thing beats a bargain, and that’s a freebie scored using reward points.
Check how your points tally is looking with popular reward schemes such as Woolworths Everyday Rewards and Coles Flybuys, and use your points to pay zilch for Black Friday purchases.
5. Dust off unused gift cards
Two in five of us have unused gift cards stashed away according to Finder.
That makes it worth rummaging around to find forgotten gift cards in time for Black Friday. Or head to sites like Voucha, where you can pick up gift cards discounted by up to 30%.
Allow for the add-ons
Don’t forget to budget for shipping and freight charges, which won’t be discounted.
Also watch for international transaction fees, usually around 3%, that can apply when you use a debit or credit card to shop on overseas websites.
You may still be charged a foreign transaction fee when you buy from a ‘.com.au’ website if the transaction is processed outside of Australia. Look for an alert on the checkout page that you could be charged extra fees.
It’s not just shoppers who love Black Friday.
The sales weekend is a magnet for cyber-crooks. ING reports that 1.4 million Aussies have been scammed during previous Black Friday events.
Matt Bowen, head of daily banking at ING Australia, offers a few tips to stay safe this Black Friday
- Be wary of clicking links shared on social media, emails or via text, even if they look legitimate. Instead, head to the retailer’s official website to verify that a deal is real.
- Be alert for fake websites that pose as “discount” sites for reputable retailers.
- Know the scams to watch for. Only one in ten Black Friday shoppers research common scams to be sure they aren’t caught out. Stay up to date by heading to the website of the Australian Cyber Security Centre.
One final tip. Don’t be surprised if your favourite independent retailer isn’t jumping on the Black Friday bandwagon.
Research by OnDeck Australia found only one in three small retailers engage in Black Friday, often because they don’t have the buying volume to slash prices like the big box retailers.
Buying from a local retailer may not mean scoring a massive discount, but it will go a long way to supporting your local economy.
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