Seven tips for making the most out of post-holiday sales

Shopping after holidays
  • A look at this holiday season's biggest shopping days:

    Ranked by sales:

    1: Nov. 29

    2: Dec. 21

    3: Dec. 22

    4: Dec. 20

    5: Dec. 14

    6: Dec. 23

    7: Dec. 26

    8: Nov. 30

    9: Dec. 7

    ...
  • SHOW ALL »
  • A look at this holiday season's biggest shopping days:

    Ranked by sales:

    1: Nov. 29

    2: Dec. 21

    3: Dec. 22

    4: Dec. 20

    5: Dec. 14

    6: Dec. 23

    7: Dec. 26

    8: Nov. 30

    9: Dec. 7

    10: Dec. 28

    Ranked by traffic:

    1: Nov. 29

    2: Dec. 21

    3: Dec. 22

    4: Dec. 14

    5: Dec. 26

    6: Nov. 30

    7: Dec. 7

    8: Dec. 15

    9: Dec. 28

    10: Dec. 20

    Source: ShopperTrak news release

While families throughout the region work to dismantle Christmas trees, box up decor and find new homes for gifts they received, they aren't the only ones caught up in that post-Christmas cleanup.

Retailers, too, find themselves clearing off shelves.

The end of the holiday season oftentimes means deep discounts. But with so many shoppers in search of a steal, things can sometimes get confusing.

Here are a few tips to help Crossroads shoppers make the most out of after-holiday sales:

Increase your savings with price match guarantees.

Many stores offer price protection, meaning that if an item's price drops within a certain time frame - or if a competing store advertises a lower price - you might be able to get the difference back.

Keep an eye on ads.

Store circulars, commercials and online advertisements offer a bit of insight into retailers' big deals before you even step into the shop. A bit of research can help streamline the shopping experience so you know who's offering the best deals.

Consider manufacturers coupons.

Coupons are available in newspapers, online and sometimes in digital format, with companies linking the discounts to frequent shopper cards. Just remember, counterfeit coupons sometimes exist, and websites that redistribute coupons might be violating policies.

Play it safe.

If a deal looks too good to be true, it probably is.

Double up on deals.

Proper planning means you might be able to use a coupon on an item that's already on sale at the store.

Keep an eye on the register.

Sometimes, retailers fail to update prices in their systems. If an item rings up for more than it should, bring it to the cashier's attention.

Research return policies.

Some stores won't allow returns on discounted items. Know what will happen if you get home and experience buyer's remorse. Can you return it? Exchange it? Take back for store credit?

Don't forget word of mouth.

Talk with friends, family and others about their experiences at different stores. Not only can they offer insight into the store itself but also possibly about the services and items you're looking to grab up.

Sources: John Morgan, executive director of the Association of Coupon Professionals; ConsumerWorld.org website; USA.gov website