Submitted by Guest Blogger

Guest Blogger — Patti Quinn, Xerox Public Relations 

Today is an exciting day for us shopaholics, not to mention an important one for retailers. Black Friday marks the official start to the holiday season and busiest shopping time of the year – and I look forward to working off the turkey and shopping ‘til I drop.

Black Friday can be both risky and overwhelming, so proper research, focus and planning are important.  For example,

  • Plan Ahead – Luckily for us, marketers have started early by sending emails, coupons, circulars outlining upcoming deals, sales, and offers in advance. This recent survey from Xerox showed that 41 percent of respondents find information and offers related to their specific interests valuable in promotions they receive during the holiday season. Count me as one of the 41 percent.                                                                                                    
  • Research – Spending time online, reading reviews and comparing prices will not only make you a savvier shopper, it will help marketers understand your likes and interests and even further personalize offers for you.  
  • Exercise Patience – the P-word is hard to fathom when Black Friday and holiday shopping can be such a chaotic and high-stress situation. There is no doubt that you will encounter long lines to enter the stores, another line to pay for your purchases and then another line in the parking lot. If you’ve done your research and know the price is worth it, patience will come in handy.
  • Plan your Getaway – If you’re interested in making a specific purchase from a specific store – visit or call ahead and find out where the item is located so you can get in and out with minimal aimless wandering.  And knowing where the best parking spots are in relation to the stores you want to visit will shave off a lot of time and energy.

What’s your game plan for Black Friday?