The holiday shopping season is almost upon us, and giant retailers from Walmart to Kmart are already touting their Black Friday deals in an attempt to capture cost-conscious consumers. What started as Black Friday weekend has now evolved into Black Friday week as retailers try to spread the load on their websites and stores, during the shopping season.

Every shopper’s goal is to get through Black Friday having saved lots of cash. With so many lucrative yet limited deals being offered by various outlets, and crowds of people looking to take advantage of the special offers, shopping during Black Friday can be quite an ordeal.

Here are some tips and tricks that can come in handy as you plan for this year’s Black Friday haul. The first tip is to be prepared. With only a few days to go, now is the time to get it together. If you are planning on going out to the stores on Black Friday, you need to do a lot of research and preparation.

Stay up-to-date

First, check out the Black Friday Predictions and stay up to date with all the ads and deals on offer. Next, make a list of what you want and check to find out which of those items are to be discounted on Black Friday. You need to do your research well ahead of time to find out which discounts are legitimate to avoid getting bamboozled. Check the prices of your desired products weeks ahead of time by Googling their average price. Finally, find out the stores offering the discounts, their locations and opening hours. You can gang up with a group of fellow shoppers with each going to a different store to buy separate items on your joint list.

If you are not into the tradition of “doorbursting” or do not enjoy the craziness of the crowds and the thrill of the find, you can opt for online shopping. You will most likely find the item of your choice online a few days before Black Friday. Online shopping on Black Friday can also be as cutthroat as lining outside shopping outlets, so you need to be prepared. Have your credit card ready to avoid missing out on great deals while scouring the house in search of it. Clear your cache to prevent your computer from freezing and betraying you as you try to grab an item and make sure that your auto-fill is turned on and ready to go.

These tips and tricks should make your Black Friday not only fruitful but also enjoyable.