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Black Friday 2021: Everything You Need to Know

From shopping strategies to the best deals available online, we're here to help you tackle Black Friday.

Black Friday deals

Pixabay

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Black Friday is just a few days away. Not to worry, though, you still have plenty of time to outline your game plan for tackling one of the biggest shopping days of the year.

Shoppers will likely be returning to storefronts after the pandemic forced them away last year, but for those of you who would rather shop online (or at least order online and pick up later), we’re answering some of the questions that you might have about Black Friday 2021.

Between supply chain issues that could affect your holiday shopping plans and mountains of markdowns from Amazon, Walmart, Target, and other major retailers, it’s hard to keep track of everything. Below, find out everything that holiday shoppers need to know to prepare for Black Friday.

Black Friday 2021: Dates, Deals, and More You Should Know 

The Friday after Thanksgiving, also known as “Black Friday,” is the annual shopping extravaganza that officially kicks the holiday shopping season into gear. The name dates back to the 1960s when Philadelphia police officers coined the phrase to describe the shopping frenzy.

Black Friday was initially relegated to in-store and catalog shopping until the internet came along to make things more convenient. Black Friday is a great time to stock up on discounted TVs, smartphones, tablets, headphones, and other tech gadgets, along with toys, appliances, houseware, apparel, shoes, books, movies, and tons more. Black Friday is the first major shopping day of the holiday season before Cyber Monday (November 29), and Cyber Week (which begins on Cyber Monday).

This year, Black Friday will take place November 26 with sales in stores and online. Many retailers began rolling out Black Friday sales in October and early November.

When it comes to a mega-shopping day like Black Friday, shopping online is probably the most convenient way to get everything done without too much stress. Some of the advantages of online shopping: You don’t have to worry about standing in long lines or shoving your way through a crowd to get that must-have toy or electronic. Another thing to remember: Retailers usually offer online-only Black Friday deals, and pre-ordering things makes it easier to get what you want as soon as it comes out.

Another great idea for a Black Friday game plan is to put together a shopping list of items to buy (for yourself or others) at least a day before you start shopping. This will make it easier to outline exactly what you need ahead of time.

black friday clock

What Are the Best Sites to Shop for Black Friday?  

Amazon — Shoppers can usually find just about anything on Amazon. The site (and app) has an easy-to-use search bar, or you can peruse Amazon’s curated homepage to find deals and more. Brands like Apple, Sony, and Microsoft have Amazon stores, which makes Amazon a great alternative when you can’t find an item on the manufacturer’s website. Furthermore, Amazon Prime members get free two-day shipping on most items (if you’re not a member, click here for a free trial), discounted pricing, and other perks.

Best Buy — Best Buy is a go-to retailer for all kinds of electronics (TVs, headphones, Bluetooth speakers, tablets, computers, laptops, gaming consoles, etc.) and appliances (refrigerators, ranges, washers, dryers, blenders, and more). The retailer is currently offering early deals on tons of items including laptops and computers, TV, speakers, small appliances, major appliances, wearable tech, gaming gear and tons more.

Walmart — Whenever we talk about the top retailers for Black Friday, Walmart is usually in the conversation. The retail giant started cutting prices weeks ahead of the big day but more early access Black Friday deals begin on Monday at 7 p.m. ET. The deals will include a Gateway Ultra Slim 15.6″ Notebook for just $179 (regular $249), this MSI 15.6″ gaming laptop for $499 (regular $824), Beats headphones for $99 (regular $138), a Straight Talk Wireless Apple iPhone 12 mini 64GB pre-paid phone for $299 (a saving of $200), $10 toys and kids clothes, discounted cookwear, vacuums, cameras, clothing, towels, games, and more. You’ll also find Xbox Series X and PS5 consoles while supplies last. Walmart+ members will get exclusive early access to these deals four hours before everyone else.

Target — Target is another retail store that many shoppers will be visiting on Black Friday. The retailer is unveiling “Black Friday Week” deals from November 21–27. The deals include a Ninja Kitchen System 7-Speed Blender for $99.99 (regular $199.99) and more kitchen appliances discounted up to 40% off. Shoppers will save up to 40% off vacuum and floor care items such as this iRobot Roomba 675 Wi-Fi Connected Robot Vacuum for $174.99 (regular $249.99); up to $60 off Apple products, up to 30% off TVs, up to 50% off headphones, 40% off laptops and notebooks, and buy one get one 50% off on tons of toys.

Additionally, Target purchases made between October 10 and December 24 qualify for holiday price matching.

B&H Photo — If you’re into film and photography, B&H is a great retailer for cameras and other equipment, and usually comes in handy when retail juggernauts like Amazon and Best Buy are sold out of something. B&H Photo’s Black Friday deals this week have savings of up to $400 on cameras and lenses from Nikon, Cannon, Fujifilm, Panasonic, Sony, Olympus, and more brands. Bargain hunters can expect great deals on laptops, microphones, lighting, tripods, and other must-haves.

Home Depot — It’s not just for home improvement. Home Depot has a huge online storefront with everything from furniture and appliances to power tools and Christmas trees and lights. Save up to 40% off drills, appliances, grills, Christmas lights, flooring, industrial shelving, and tons of others items. Like other retailers, Home Depot’s Black Friday savings are already available. The list includes this Webber Spirit II E-310 3-Burner Grill for $489 (regular $519), the Dewalt Atomic 20-Volt Compact Drill Combo Kit for $149 (regular $229), an LG 24″ dishwasher for $595 (regular $749), a Melpark 60″ vanity marked down over $700 to $1,079.40 (regular $1,799), and this Samsung 28.2 cu. ft. French Door Refrigerator discounted 35% to $1,298 (regular $1,999).

Macy’s — Macy’s is a go-to-spot for deep discounts throughout the year, but the markdowns really start heating up around Black Friday. Shoppers will find deals on apparel, holiday decorations, handbags and accessories, clothing, furniture, beauty products, jewelry, shoes, electronics, and tons more. Macy’s is currently running a “Black Friday Early Access” promo which gets you up to 70% off on coats, jackets and jewelry, up to 50% off shoes and boots, 60% off FAO Schwarz, Sharper Image and Discover toys, $25 fragrances, and tons more.

Sam’s Club — Sam Club’s will be offering customers “4 Days of Thanks-Savings” beginning November 25 (online only). The rest of the Black Friday deals will take place in stores and online from November 26–28. The four days of markdowns include discounts on TVs, furniture, air fryers, mattresses, bedding, smartphones, and exercise equipment.

Verizon — You can expect to find great deals on iPhones, Androids, and other popular devices. Right now, customers can get up to $1,200 off 5G phones plus an additional $800 to switch to Verizon on select trade-in and unlimited plans. Verizon also offers deals on iPad, iPad Mini, Samsung tablets, laptops, cell phone accessories, headphones, and speakers.

AT&T — Black Friday Deals are happening now at AT&T. The savings include up to $1,000 off an iPhone 13 Pro Max with eligible trade-in, and 50% off Google Pixel 6. Customers who sign up for AT&T Fiber online will get a $200 reward card or a smart home bundle worth nearly $350.

Concept view of percentage label for sales promotion

Early Black Friday Deals You Can Shop Right Now

If you want to get started shopping early, there are tons of cool gadgets marked down ahead of Black Friday. Below, find a roundup of Apple AirPods, wireless speakers, and other discounted electronics that you can buy before Black Friday. For more holiday-themed shopping guides, see our list of best Advent calendars for movie and TV lovers.

Apple AirPods Pro

Apple AirPods are extremely popular, so it’s always great when you can snag them on sale. These Apple AirPods Pro are currently marked down $80 at Amazon.

Sony Alpha a7 III Mirrorless Camera

For indoor and outdoor shoots, the Sony Alpha a7 III Mirrorless Camera delivers stunning portraits and beautiful action shots. The camera features an FE 28-70mm standard zoom lens, Optical SteadyShot image stabilization for blur-free, crisp images, and a seven-blade circular aperture for a more natural-looking bokeh effects. Plus, it’s marked down $200.

Google Nest Hub, 2nd Generation

The Google Next Hub is an all-in-one smart home control center. In addition to playing shows, videos and music in your kitchen, bedroom, living room or another space in your home, the Next Hub can be set up to control lighting throughout, TVs, smart phones, and other compatible devices. The Next Hub can even help you wake up courtesy of the Sunrise Alarm.

Fire TV Stick 4K Streaming Device with Remote Control

Need a Fire TV Stick? This discounted bundle comes with the device and remote control — plus it’s 50% off at Amazon. If you’d rather have a Fire TV Cube the device is $79.99 at Amazon (regular $119.99).

Samsung 7.1-Channel Soundbar

After more than a year of binge-watching TV shows and movies from home, don’t be surprised if you’ve become a sound expert. Upgrade your entertainment experience with this Samsung 7.1-Channel Soundbar offering immersive, high-fidelity 3D sound with Dolby Digital 5.1.

Vizio V-Series 65″ Classic 4K TV

The Vizio V-Series 65” 4K Ultra HD TV produces over eight million pixels for breathtaking detail four times the resolution of 1080p. Other features include full-array backlight LEDs evenly distributed across the screen’s backlight for superior light uniformity and picture performance, and SmartCast Instant to access the best selection of apps, from Netflix, Disney+, YouTube, HBO Max, and many more. The TV is equipped with Apple AirPlay 2 and Chromecast built-in so that you can control, mirror, and share your content from your Apple or Android devices directly to the TV. This limited deal ends November 24.

2020 Macbook Air Laptop

This 2020 Macbook Air Laptop is powered by Apple’s ultra-fast M1 chip, making it up to three times faster than earlier designs. The laptop has a 13″ retina display screen, 8GB of ram, 256GB of storage, and 18 hours of battery life.

 

Samsung MX-T70 Sound Tower Wireless Speaker

Let’s get this party started! The Samsung MX-T70 sound tower is marked down $320 at Best Buy, which is an excellent pre-Black Friday deal. This device fills the room with up to 1500W of bi-directional sound. The built-in 10” woofer delivers loud, impressively detailed bass, while the LED party lights enhance any gathering with a variety of rhythmic lighting effects.

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