5 tips to get primed and ready for Amazon’s October Prime Day – The Mercury News


By Tommy Tindall | NerdWallet

Amazon’s Prime Big Deal Days event is next week: Oct. 10-11. Call it “Prime Day 2.0” if you agree the name doesn’t roll off the tongue. The event promises another round of lowered prices on all sorts of products and an opportunity to cross-shop competing retailers.

October sales at a glance

Black Friday in October may be Amazon’s idea, but other retailers aren’t to be out-dollared. Here’s a rundown of the deal dates and some need-to-knows.

Target Circle Week is already on, running Oct. 1-7.

  • Deals are exclusive to Target Circle members, but Circle is free to join and use.
  • Get discounts online or in-store on items ranging from toys and kitchen supplies to everyday essentials like diapers and wipes.

Walmart’s Deals Holiday Kickoff begins at 7 p.m. ET on Oct. 9 and runs through Oct. 12.

  • This sale isn’t exclusive to Walmart+ members, so all shoppers can access the deals.
  • Expect discounts on giftable items like electronics, apparel, home decor and more.

Amazon’s Prime Big Deal Days begins at 3 a.m. ET on Oct. 10 and runs through Oct. 11.

  • Deals are exclusive to Amazon Prime members; Prime costs $14.99 a month or $139 a year. (There’s a 30-day free trial option for newbies.)
  • Expect deal drops throughout the event, and Prime members can request special invites ahead of time to doorbusters that may sell out.

Oh, and Best Buy has a 48-Hour Flash Sale on Oct. 10-11.

It’s like “shopping Armageddon,” says Charles Lindsey, associate professor of marketing at the University at Buffalo School of Management. “Retailers are going earlier and earlier every year in the hopes of locking in a certain percentage of consumers’ ‘holiday wallets’ before other retailers can,” he says.

Similar sales at the same time last year gave people a good reason to jump into Black Friday shopping early. Prices on popular products monitored by NerdWallet hit or matched year lows.

But the extended season of sales creates more opportunities for shoppers to bust their gift-buying budgets, says Lindsey.

Try these methods to shop the onslaught of early sales in a way that preserves your holiday wallet.

1. Make a game plan

Approach internet sales with a plan, says Lars Perner, assistant professor of clinical marketing at the University of Southern California. “If you go online and look at all of these great deals, you’re going to be tempted, and you may end up buying things that you otherwise wouldn’t have bought,” he adds.

Amazon shoppers can likely relate. You go online for a specific item, say a wireless mouse for your laptop, and you check out with the mouse, plus a massage gun and a DIY home security system because of the in-your-face markdowns.

Make a list of what you need and know your gift-buying and fun money budget before you browse.

“We only have a limited amount of money to spend,” says Perner. So be ready to be enticed and understand the implications of overspending, he adds.

2. Shop intentionally and set a time limit

Maybe you’ve heard of timeboxing work tasks. It’s a strategy where you schedule time for a task, stay with it for a short burst, then move on. The concept promotes focus and clarity of objective, according to the Project Management Institute. You can use this method for a more focused and budget-conscious online shopping experience.

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