Orlando, Fla. — Adobe Analytics predicts Cyber Monday sales to jump 18.9 percent this year with Americans shelling out close to $9.4 billion.
WDBO Consumer Warrior Clark Howard is offering 10 tips to get the best deals today.
1. First Clark says to keep your payments safe by using a secure connection and always use a credit card.
2. Clark recommends that you pre-shop if possible, and use social media to monitor sales updates and exclusive deals.
3. Have your browser set by bookmarking your favorite retailers and if possible even have your online shopping carts full of your desired items. Clark says you can even download add-ons to avoid overpaying. For example, InvisibleHand sends you alerts when something your shopping for is priced for less elsewhere.
4. Be sure to be on the lookout for coupon codes so you can stack your savings, says Clark. Find discounts at ClarkDeals.com.
5. Keep in mind that online retailers change their prices throughout the day to stay competitive. Clark says you can use an online tool like Camelcamelcamel.com to track sales and receive price drop notifications.
6. Be sure to read return policies, Clark says this can save your a lot of headaches. Keep an eye out for return shipping costs and restocking fees.
7. Clark points out that NOT everything is a good deal on Cyber Monday. He says “Gadgets, shoes and cookware are all typically great buys on Cyber Monday. It’s typically better to hold off on purchases like toys and winter apparel until prices drop further closer to the holiday.”
8. Don’t be fooled by the promise of free shipping. Clark says its not really free if you have to spend more to get it. You can sign up for free trial of two-day shipping service or choose the local pick-up option instead.
9. ALWAYS be on scam alert by knowing what to look for in a credible retailer. Clark says if you ever question a store's legitimacy check it out through the Better Business Bureau. He reminds you, "If a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is."
10. Remember to comparison shop -even on Cyber Monday. Clark says to use a website like Google Shopping to compare stores.
Finally, Clark says keep your budget in mind and don't overspend. For more information on Cyber Monday shopping click here and be sure to tune into The Clark Howard Show weeknights on News 96.5 WDBO beginning at 8 p.m.