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SALT LAKE CITY — Stores are opening earlier and shoppers are already lined up for Black Friday deals. Technology has made shopping more competitive than ever, but there are plenty of tools you can use to keep yourself in the game.
Price comparison apps
Price comparison apps allow shoppers to decide if they are really getting the deal they think they're getting, or if they could find a better price elsewhere. While many stores suspend their usual price-matching policies on Black Friday, stores like Kohl's, Walmart and J.C. Penney all continue to match competitors' prices the day after Thanksgiving. Compare prices and take a screenshot of the lower price to take advantage of the deals. Price matching apps include:
- PriceCheck by Amazon
- Consumer Reports Mobile Shopper
Multiple retailers are offering exclusive deals to shoppers with their apps, including Macy's, Sears and Walmart. Some retailers also offer special discounts to shoppers who "check in" on FourSquare. Discount apps like RetailMeNot allow users to search for discounts at specific locations. ShopKick detects when shoppers are near specific stores and offers rewards.
Black Friday apps
- BFAds loads Black Friday ads straight to your phone.
- The Black Friday Survival Guide allows users to browse ads in real time and create shopping lists.
- Black Friday App is a catalogue of Black Friday ads from major retailers and includes a feed of recently posted deals.
- TGI Black Friday allows users to search for deals by product and save deals for later. It also shows how many deals are at a particular store.
This year, 87 percent of shoppers will use a mobile device to make shopping decisions. Your smartphone can do more than help you find a deep discount — it can help you stay sane.
- Research which stores have deals beginning early and extending into the holiday season. Many stores offer discounts on Cyber Monday — the Monday after Thanksgiving when online retailers typically get hit by holiday shoppers.
- Know when the stores you plan on visiting will be open and make a plan. Which items are most important? Which can you get at the same price online over the weekend?
- Make sure you understand each store's return policy before making a grab for anything within reach marked 40-percent off.
- Follow stores on social media. Many retailers announce temporary deals via Facebook, Twitter and other social networks.
If you are shopping on Black Friday, tell us on the comment boards which helpful apps or websites you plan on utilizing on the big day.