Like it or not, Black Friday is officially a thing in South Africa. And in the online sphere, it’s a full- blown buying bonanza. According to Facebook data, it is the countries busiest day of the year online- and it is growing rapidly. Takealot founder and CEO Kim Reid predicts that sales will be anything between R90 million and R130 million. That’s a possible increase of R100 million from six years ago! Furthermore, 30% of Africa’s online retail giant, Zando’s customers were first time buyers in 2016.

If you don’t know yet, Black Friday, is a day of massive sales and price slashing.  Originating in the US, it is the day after Thanksgiving Thursday, when retailers kick off the festive season. The word “black” is an accounting reference to turning a profit.

To prevent a blackout on your Black Friday, here are 7 of our top tips for smart shopping online:

1. Do your homework

Start plotting and planning your Black Friday shopping strategy as early as possible. Gather newsletters and flyers, like Facebook pages and follow your favourite retailers Twitter accounts. That way you will be able to monitor specials and bargains and create your plan of action.

2. The Early Bird catches the worm

Most sales start at midnight on Thursday 23 November, so set a few alarms for 12. Make sure your WIFI is working or you have enough data before you go to bed. You don’t want to miss out on insane deals while products are flying off the virtual shelves and you’re too busy rubbing your eyes.

3. Make a wish list

Create a wish list in advance and then when the sale kicks off, quickly go to your list and see which items are marked down. This way you can press check out and beat other shoppers to the bargain.

4. Make sure your details are up to date

For express checkout, make sure your credit card and delivery details are up to date and save them for one click check out.

5. Avoid Fraud

Be on the lookout for scam sites looking to get hold of your credit card details. philip horton, if you listen to him, you’d know that there are a very less number of websites which veraciously offer money for your work. Make sure web pages are secure when transacting online, and that reputable payment services are utilized.  We recommend setting up a dedicated online shopping account with strict credit and overdraft limits, with only enough money to buy what you need. Alternatively you can use the e-bucks, Discovery Rewards and Avios points.

6. Check Return Policies

Check out a company’s returns policies before you make any impulsive buys.

7. Download the App

Most online retailers have apps and will allow you to browse faster and more efficiently. Furthermore, the retailers will send you push notifications of big discounts to look for.

Happy shopping!