Waste Not, Want Not: Best Deals to Buy in November
Ah, Black Friday: the mother lode of deals. It’s the day that bargain hunters wait for, either in snaking lines in the freezing cold or at their computers with a mouse in one hand and a cup of coffee in the other.
Black Friday and its younger sibling, Cyber Monday, are well known to all shoppers as the pinnacle of the shopping season. However, if you’re only circling the dates of November 28th (Black Friday 2013) and December 2nd (Cyber Monday 2013), then you will definitely be missing out on a wide spectrum of online deals that will be available in the month of November.
Expanded Shopping Window
The entire month of November is now open season for stores targeting customers’ wallets. It has become so competitive that retailers are no longer waiting for Black Friday or even Thanksgiving to roll out their best deals of the year. The last few years, online electronics seller Newegg has promoted “Black November” on November 1st, kickstarting an entire month of best-of-the-year offers. Amazon has their “Black Friday Week” starting on November 22nd this year and will be counting down to that date with various offers throughout the entire month of November.
At Ben’s Bargains, we invite you to visit our Black Friday 2013 Hub which we will launch on Monday, November 4th and will be showcasing all the best deals of the month as they appear, 24/7! Plus, we’ll have a cheat sheet of the best in-store Black Friday deals and buyers’ guides to the hottest gifts this holiday season.
Here’s a look at some prime shopping deals in November:
Crazy doorbusters are par for the course on Black Friday, and cheap DVDs, Blu-rays and older video games are typically among the loss leaders that retailers will dangle to customers to get them into their stores or onto their sites.
Expect popular Blu-ray movies at $5 a pop or even less from sites like Amazon, Walmart, Best Buy, JR.com and the Warner Bros. online shop. Amazon will discount movies and music the last week of November at different times of the day. Sign up for their emails or even better, peruse their Twitter feeds to get notice of every single deal.
Popular new video games (less than 6 months old) are rarely as cheap as movies during November, but you’ll see stores like GameStop and Amazon pricing select new titles at the sweet spot of $25 to $30 for a limited time. However, don’t expect the new platform titles (Xbox One or PS4) to be discounted, but you may see promotional gift cards bundled with these games at full price from Newegg and Amazon.
Don’t forget magazines: online magazine seller DiscountMags will most likely have its once-a-year sale with 2-year subscriptions at $8 for dozens of magazines.
Discounted iTunes Gift Cards
Speaking of cheap media, November is the time when you start to see select retailers discounting iTunes gift cards. iTunes cards make great gifts for anyone in the Apple ecosystem, because they can be applied towards music, iOS apps, Mac apps, iBooks and more. You will see iTunes cards discounted from 20% up to as much as 30% off in some cases. Walmart, Best Buy and even Safeway (but not Apple, see below) are known to heavily discount iTunes cards at this time of year. Don’t pass up an opportunity to grab these great stocking stuffers.
November is also a great time to find discounted gift cards at other stores like Nike and Home Depot from online gift card discounter Raise.com.
Snag That Big Screen Television
You will see the best prices of the year on HDTVs, laptops and tablets hands-down. However, don’t expect they will appear only on Black Friday or Cyber Monday. Because the landscape is so competitive among retailers, expect to see once-a-year, one-off deals peppered throughout the month of November.
November is about three-quarters through the HDTV model year, and there will be big discounts. If you miss them, don’t expect similar deals to come around till February 2014 when the new model year TVs come out and the 2013 models need to be liquidated. While 42-inch televisions will likely be around similar prices to last year, expect larger discounts on televisions in the 47-inch range. Of course, you will see the lowest prices on off-brand televisions, but keep an eye out for middle-of-the-road brands like Vizio for the best combination of build quality and features.
We are not quite midway through the life cycle of the current 4th generation of Intel (Haswell) computers, so you won’t be seeing big price drops on those PCs. For 3rd generation and older PCs, you will see crazy prices with Core i3 laptops below $300 and Core i5 at $350 to $400. Lenovo, Dell and HP will have the best prices of the year on all of their laptops. And because PCs are facing increasingly stiff competition from tablets, you may see some of the best laptop deals in 2013 that we’ve seen in years.
While tablets are sitting pretty and regular prices continue to fall, the holidays should serve up some exciting tablet deals, as well. Amazon is known to discount their Kindle line this time of year, including their newest models, and eBay is certain to have prices on brand-new, popular tablets like the Google Nexus 7 at 10% to 15% off anywhere else.
Also, keep an eye out for tablets sporting Intel’s new Bay Trail processor, especially if you are in the market for a Windows tablet this year. The Bay Trail has impressive performance and a low price point that will give the Apple iPad some serious competition this year.
The Apple Store Black Friday sale gets a mention only because new Apple products are so rarely discounted. During their one-day Black Friday sale, Apple Store will offer very modest discounts between 5% to 15% on their products with their iPad line at the low end of that spectrum.
If you’re hoping to save a few more bucks, you can wait for the eBay deals that we normally feature on a weekly basis which have similar or slightly better discounts on brand-new iPads from top sellers. As for Macs, Best Buy is likely to offer slightly better deals than Apple Store’s Black Friday deals, and you may even see them in early November.
The Usual Suspects
It almost goes without saying that the best time of the year to buy clothes and toys is November and December. If you’re looking for a specific toy or brand of clothing, you absolutely must set up a Ben’s Bargains deal alert because we will be working hard over the next several weeks to bring you the very best clothing and toy deals out there on the web.
You will also be able to find tons of great deals on kitchen cookware as well as tools for the garage over the next several weeks. Look for the best deals toward the end of the month as well as early December.
Don’t Forget Deal Alerts
If you want to make sure you don’t miss any upcoming November and Black Friday deals on Ben’s Bargains, don’t forget to set up deal alerts (registration required). You’ll receive an instant email and get the first chance to jump on a once-a-year, one-off deal before it disappears. And the Ben’s Best deals are gone fast!
You’re also welcome to send us tips or suggestions. Good luck and don’t forget to stop by Ben’s Bargains every day in November for the best deals of the year!
– Mike Flacy contributed to this report.