Holiday shopping advice, tips that go beyond Cyber Monday
Figuratively speaking, plenty of keyboards could be melting right now after all the cyber-shopping underway in homes and offices around metro Detroit.
Cyber Monday has become a billion dollar bonanza for online retailers, even if it still lags behind the traditional Black Friday windfall for brick and mortar stores.
"We're seeing a lot more consumer comfort with shopping online," said Trae Bodge of retailmenot.com. She's the executive editor of the website's blog.
While many of you may have already gone on your Cyber Monday shopping binge by midday, she says there's still time to save into the evening on the big shopping day.
She advised, "Look specifically for those big doorbuster deals, like 40 percent off plus. If you see something like that for a particular item that's on your list. I would say grab that today."
More Bargains To Come
If you don't see those big savings, Bodge says you might be able to wait, as she expects discounts of 20 to 30 percent will continue through the next few weeks. In particular, she says do not buy winter apparel, like coats and gloves, right now.
"It's a little bit too early, so wait until you get a little bit closer to Christmas or Hanukkah," she said.
However, our expert says the clock is ticking for hot toys, such as new improved Furbies, Cabbage Patch Dolls, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
"Just because certain colors, models might sell out, so you don't want your children to be disappointed under the Christmas tree," Bodge said.
No matter what you buy, Bodge suggests you use price comparison tools like Invisible Hand.
"If you're looking at a specific item on a website- invisible hand will pop up and let you know if you found the lower price, or if you can find a better price elsewhere," said Bodge. She says invisible hand will also provide a link directly to the site that's offering the lower price.
Security and Safety
By now, many of you may know the drill when it comes to shopping safely online, but it never hurts to review the guidelines that will protect your money and personal information.
- Look at the web address on sites that you shop, make sure you see "https" to know that is a secure site.
- Shop with retailers you know are legitimate
- If a website looks handmade, or somehow not professional, avoid at all costs.
- Use a credit card or Pay Pal when shopping online. It's easier to recoup money than if you use your debit card.