Heading to stores this month to take advantage of after-Christmas deep discounts? It’s definitely not too late to squeeze more savings from post-holiday sales! Here are some easy tricks to getting the most for even less after December 25.
Use gift cards now.
Sales of gift cards spiked by a whopping 43 percent in the past year, which means you probably received at least one for the holidays. Instead of saving it for a rainy day, use it in the two weeks following Christmas, and you’ll be able to buy a lot more with it compared to last year’s post-holiday season.
The reason: In 2021, a scarcity of merchandise caused by supply chain problems resulted in fewer discounted products and higher prices. But this holiday season, many retailers (including Target and Walmart) had the opposite problem: All of those delayed shipments finally arrived, leaving them with more stock than they could fit inside stores or warehouses. This means they’re under enormous pressure to sell whatever is leftover from Christmas before new inventory comes in. So they’re offering big markdowns to entice you to take these extra products off their hands.
Tip: Sign up to retailer email lists now. In January, many stores host “flash sales,” where they drastically slash prices for just 24 hours or less. If you’re on their list, you’ll be alerted.
Seek out these bonuses.
Marking down the price of merchandise isn’t the only tactic stores are using to motivate you to shop. Right now, they’re also giving you lots of ways to save when you buy multiple items at once. For example, they’re offering more buy-one get-one (BOGO) discounts, a free gift with the purchase of certain items and “bundle” deals, which give you a discount on two or more related products (such as makeup and anti-wrinkle cream) when you buy them together. This way, you get more bang for your buck while stores get to clear out excess inventory even faster. To find these offers, visit DealNews.com and GWPAddicts.com.
Focus on the seasonal.
Reindeer sweaters and Christmas lights aren’t the only items you can nab at deeply discounted prices after December 25. Stores also have to empty their shelves of everyday products that have a holiday design or were in holiday-themed packaging. These leftover goods become “dead stock” — inventory that can’t be sold on the shelf or to liquidators. So they’d rather sell them dirt cheap than take a total loss. This makes it a great time to stock up on any items that have been specially decorated for the holidays but can still be used for months to come, including paper goods, cake mixes, and candy. Also smart: Snap up boxed gift sets, such as those containing meats and cheeses or a collection of spices since they’ll be at the lowest prices you’ll find all year!
Look for unexpected deals.
While companies are pulling out all the stops to sell their holiday goods, they’re also offering deals on lots of non-holiday items too. That’s because the start of the new year is prime time for sales of products that coincide with New Year’s resolutions, such as bathroom scales and fitness trackers. Another bargain to look for: “New customer” discounts from companies that provide services, like cable or satellite TV, gyms, home security, meal kit delivery, and wireless providers. They typically offer big savings at the start of the year to encourage new customers to try them out. To find surprising deals, visit BradsDeals.com and SlickDeals.net. Or call companies where you’re not a customer and ask what deals they’re offering if you switch.
Retail stores aren’t the only businesses where you can save big. Chilly winter weather typically leads to a January slowdown at restaurants, so many are offering great deals. For example, last January, Applebee’s let customers add a dozen Double Crunch Shrimp to any steak entrée for only $1, and The Cheesecake Factory gave away two slices of cheesecake with take-out and delivery orders of $30 or more. For current offers, visit EatDrinkDeals.com and RetailMeNot.com.
A version of this article originally appeared in our print magazine, Woman’s World.