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Shopping smarter, not harder, on Black Friday

November 29th, 2013 | by Dominique Fong | Comments
Best Buy assistant store manager Reece Wells directs shoppers to where they need to go as the Palm Desert Best Buy store opens for shopping Thursday, November 28, 2013. Michael Snyder/The Desert Sun

Best Buy assistant store manager Reece Wells directs shoppers to where they need to go as the Palm Desert Best Buy store opens for shopping Thursday, November 28, 2013. Michael Snyder/The Desert Sun

Everybody knows that the deep-dish discounts advertised on Black Friday are often not actually bargains for the retailer.

That sweater you think you got a deal on? It was never meant to sell at the starting price. Major retailers have already worked out deals with suppliers to knock down wholesale prices so that they’ll still get their desired profit margins from the consumer in the end, the Wall Street Journal reported.

While hundreds of shoppers across the Coachella Valley lined up Thursday night and in the wee Friday morning, they may not be aware of how the whole thing is really, well, staged.

Forbes also pointed out that the real reason why stores are trying to one-up each other in the race to open early is because shoppers spend about half their gift budget this weekend and that people dish out about 70 percent of their spending at the first two stores they visit.

So, in honor of shopping with a little more wisdom, here’s 11 tips from The Atlantic about how to sniff out what’s really a “good deal.”

Hint: Don’t get suckered into anything that says FREE!

And don’t buy that one… last… thing.

Business reporter Dominique Fong can be reached at (760) 778-4661, dominique.fong@thedesertsun.com and on Twitter @dominiquefong.

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