How to find the best sales on Black Friday + Cyber Monday

The biggest shopping weekend of the year is almost here and while it is super exciting, it can also be really overwhelming.

Supposed deals are everywhere right now, but all Black Friday deals are not created equal. Luckily, savvy shoppers have many tools to compare sales and track down the truly slashed prices.

Here are five ways to make sure you're getting the best Black Friday + Cyber Monday deals.

1. Arm yourself with apps before heading out

Even if you plan to do your Black Friday shopping the old-fashioned way (in the stores, Starbucks cup in hand) adding an online component to your shopping game plan can ensure you hit the shops strategically, knowing which items you want and which stores have the best prices on them.

Apps like TGIblackfriday and Flipp let you check out store flyers on your phone, and compare prices so you can be sure you're getting the best discount on the items on your list.

2. Make a list

A little pre-planning on these apps can help you get the best deal and avoid Black Friday impulse buys that are displayed as a sale item but aren't actually meaningfully discounted.

As NBC News reports, experts suggest making two lists before heading the stores—one of items you want for yourself and another list of items you want to give as gifts. Having a list can really help you stick to your Black Friday budget by keeping random "deals" out of your cart.

3. Get your browser prepped

If the majority of your Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping is going to be online, you should plan to use your computer, not your phone, because browser extensions can be a good secret weapon.

The PriceWaiter extension for Chrome allows users to haggle with retailers over select prices, so you can ask for a steeper discount than listed. The Coupons at Checkout Chrome extension will highlight discount codes so you don't miss out and the Price Rocket extension for Chrome provides automatic price comparisons and alerts for lower prices.

Other shopping extensions like EBates, Honey and Wikibuy can also come in handy.

4. Know which day to do your shopping

As CNBC reports, Black Friday isn't the best day for every deal. If you're looking for a new TV for example, Cyber Monday may be a better bet, and experts say a lot of the big Black Friday deals actually go live on Thanksgiving day, meaning Thursday may have more deals than Friday (if you're up for shopping after all that turkey). Target, Macy's and Best Buy are all among the retailers opening at 5 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day.

5. Let Motherly find the deals for you

With so many retailers offering so many deals, it can be overwhelming to navigate this shopping season. Motherly will be curating deals and discounts during our Black Friday coverage, so check back with us while you do your shopping.

Happy bargain hunting!

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