This story is part ofour year-round collection of the best gift ideas.
is days away, but deals are already heating up , , and other retailers, days ahead of the shopping holiday. Here at CNET, we’ve rounded up the deals available so far and put together some of our top links and tips to help boost your shopping experience.
From budget tips to researching Black Friday ads, we’ll walk you through several easy ways to prepare for Black Friday to make this shopping season as stress-free as possible. If you’re up to date with all things Black Friday, these are definitely a must-see, and our guide to .
But before we get to that, let’s preload the multitude of deals and shopping options already available.
Where to start: The best Black Friday deals
: Your first stop for the latest and greatest deals we’ve found so far.
Black Friday Deals Live Blog: This story will be updated regularly for now, but we’ll ramp it up as we get closer to Thanksgiving.
: We round up the top options under $25. Check back later for the best deals under $50 and $100.
Join our SMS group: Get the best Black Friday deals delivered straight to your phone ahead of and throughout the event.
The best Black Friday deals by store
Do you have a favorite store? We have many business specific offer summaries to get you started.
More Amazon tips and deals:
The best Black Friday deals by theme
We are actively updating our Evergreen deal stories to include the latest and greatest early Black Friday deals.
do you have all this Good. Now let’s talk about some general Black Friday shopping tips.
Set a budget and set money aside
Whether you’re shopping for yourself or snagging gifts for friends and family, the holiday shopping season seems to go by so quickly every year. As such, it’s wise to budget for it throughout the year so you don’t hit your last few paychecks of the year as heavily.
With many Black Friday sales already underway (see above) and a general state of economic turmoil (like theand elsewhere), you need to be more careful than ever with spending limits. It’s a good idea to set a maximum amount that you’re willing to spend all in all, and then track your spending throughout the event. It’s easy to get carried away with the excitement when deals go live and not pay close enough attention to how much you’re spending, but this ownership will be key to avoiding huge overspending.
Decide now what you want to buy and check the prices
While many Black Friday purchases are impulse driven, a more effective way to shop is to try to identify purchase goals ahead of time and make a list. There are a few reasons why this is a better approach. First, you can now estimate prices, which will help you with your budget and savings goals. Doing your research now can also help you find out what’s worth buying during the event, or if a “sale” price isn’t too far off a product’s regular retail price.
During the Black Friday sales, you can also work through the list you’ve created to get everything you need in an organized way while doing your best to avoid wasting money on impulse purchases.
Watch as many Black Friday ads as you can ahead of the event
Part of your pre-event research should be to screen as many as possibleas you can. Not only is this the best way to get a sneak peek at what’s on offer during the event, but you can budget more effectively and shop more efficiently if you know where the best prices are.
Shop now for early sales or plan for delivery delays
As mentioned, Black Friday sales don’t wait for Black Friday to start – many are already live! Being able to secure a low price now not only helps spread the cost, but it could also help you avoid a hefty shipping delay or missing out on a deal down the road. For a few dollars difference between now and actual Black Friday, it can be worth snagging on things you need now. If you don’t need things urgently, then it may suit you to wait a little longer.
Early Black Friday Deals:
Compare prices with the CNET Shopping extension
Is this Black Friday “deal” really a deal? Instead of looking up the prices of Amazon’s retail competitors one by one, do it instantly with a price comparison extension for your web browser. There are several on the market, but CNET now has its own internal extension: CNET Shopping (formerly known as PriceBlink). It works across a range of retailers and can show you the best current offer, price history for selected items, retailer coupons to increase your savings and much more.
The best part? The extension is completely free. Try it now on Google Chrome.
Follow the CNET Deals team
The CNET Deals team will keep you updated on the best deals leading up to Black Friday, so rest assured Follow the team on Twitter and sign up for the CNET Deals newsletter. We have many more shopping tips for you, e.g and the .