Making the most of online shopping

Black Friday is almost here, but holiday deals are already in full swing.

Posted: Nov. 22, 2017 10:38 AM

(NBC News) Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Gray November...sales are now staggered throughout the holiday season, and it can be overwhelming to chase down deals.

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Having a list and checking it twice can help you avoid impulse purchases.

"When you make that list find the retail price of all of those items, so that when a deal does pop up you know that its a deal," says CNET's Lindsey Turrentine.

To see what deals will be offered ahead of time, follow retailers on social media, sign up for email newsletters or check circulars online.

And for those hard-to-get items on your list, don't wait.

"You're probably going to end up paying full retail, so you might as well do that up front," Turrentine says.

You can also install a free browser plug-in like "Honey" or "eBates" before you make a purchse. They will automatically add coupon codes, discount alerts and even offer cash back.

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