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- The two biggest shopping days of the year are still a few weeks away, but surely anyone looking to save some serious cash is planning right now — or should be.
- But, is Black Friday 2020 or Cyber Monday 2020 better for deals? When it comes to Black Friday versus Cyber Monday, there's a lot to consider.
- A solid rule of thumb is that Black Friday is a better time to buy newer, big-ticket items. It's also the best day to shop in stores, though you can also shop online. Cyber Monday is a better day to shop for tech deals and smaller gifts. You'll also see slightly better discounts online.
- This year, Black Friday lands on November 27, and Cyber Monday happens on November 30.
For decades, Black Friday was the ultimate day for bargain shopping. But in the past few years, Cyber Monday has come to replace it as the biggest annual shopping event in the US.
Is Black Friday or Cyber Monday better for discount buyers? The short answer is that Cyber Monday has better deals overall — but it's close.
What is Cyber Monday?
Cyber Monday comes three days after Black Friday — the Monday after, naturally — and revolves around online deals. This year, Cyber Monday lands on November 30. Generally speaking, tech products are more widely discounted than anything else on this day.
Believe it or not, but Cyber Monday is now even bigger than Black Friday — retail sales in 2019 soared to a record-high of $9.4 billion online.
Is Cyber Monday better than Black Friday?
Historically, yes. However, we expect the difference between the two holidays to be negligible this year.
In past years, we found there to be a few differences. For items you're likely to buy once a year or less, you'll probably find better discounts on Black Friday. Anything you'd buy as a gift will likely see better discounts on Cyber Monday.
That said, overall savings aren't the only thing to consider. Different products receive better discounts on each day, and the deals that each retailer offers will vary.
"Black Friday equals big-ticket items," said Steve Koenig, Vice President of Research at the Consumer Technology Association. "With big deals on TVs, laptops, game consoles, and more during Black Friday week, many [people's] purchases end up being for themselves or their own households."
This year, we're seeing a lot of deals crop up weeks in advance of Black Friday. Retailers are encouraging shoppers to shop early and online — a stark departure from previous years. Black Friday used to be characterized by long lines, crowded stores, and the mad rush for bargains, but, of course, impossible during the pandemic.
That said, shoppers can look forward to shopping for the very best deals without ever leaving their house, regardless of whether they choose to shop on Black Friday, Cyber Monday, or right now.
Best early Black Friday deals
Here are the best deals early Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals we found.
The medium-firm mattress has the support of a spring mattress along with the comfort of memory foam and features cooling technology. It comes with a 100-night free trial. While hybrid mattresses from online startups can cost thousands of dollars, Wayfair Sleep's is under $500 during the retailer's First-Chance Black Friday sale.
When to shop Black Friday versus Cyber Monday
Shop Black Friday for major stores; shop Cyber Monday for secondhand buys
"For Black Friday, look to the biggest retailers, the ones who can afford to have smaller margins," said Janet Alveraz, Executive Editor of the personal-finance publication Wise Bread. "Places like Walmart and Best Buy tend to offer the best deals on Black Friday." The exception here is Amazon, which tends to have better deals on Cyber Monday — as long as you're a Prime member.
But, if you're willing to buy products from resellers, Cyber Monday is a great time to shop on eBay. "You'll find a lot of people reselling items they just purchased on Black Friday," Alveraz said.
Shop Black Friday for this year's products; shop Cyber Monday for older generations
"Latest-generation products tend to be cheaper on Black Friday than on Cyber Monday," Alveraz said. "Cyber Monday is a terrific time for smart home [devices], TVs, and consoles that are older."
No matter when or where you shop, use a credit card with purchase protection
Especially if you're buying something expensive like a laptop or TV, it's best to use a credit card that offers purchase protection. If you pay with a card that offers this benefit and a covered item is stolen or damaged, you can receive reimbursement — much better than being out hundreds of dollars if something goes wrong.
Some of the top rewards credit cards offering this benefit. Coverage varies from card to card and is generally valid for up to 120 days after you purchase an item. Be sure to read the terms and conditions ahead of time so you're familiar with any exclusions and caps on reimbursement.
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