November online sales? Unless you have been living under a rock (or really don’t like shopping), you might have heard of these. In summary, these are the main sales:
- 11 November (Singles Day). Originally started in China by some students who wanted to celebrate being single, it’s now morphed into a worldwide shopping bonanza. What a way to celebrate singledom in style! Even Costco has a Singles Day event today, but the big place where it is at is Alibaba and related sites such as Aliexpress.
- 10-11 November Click Frenzy. The big annual event kicked off at 7pm last night. They now have more than one event in the year, but the November one is the granddaddy of them all. The site regularly crashes. And yes, it is that popular.
- 27 November Black Friday. This is an online sale movement that is big in the US, where it typical takes place just before Thanksgiving. The Black Friday movement has now spread globally/.
- 30 November Cyber Monday. This is a continuation of Black Friday – actually, these sales pretty much last the whole weekend.
Why to shop at the sales
The big reason is to save money: there are big discounts across many items in these sales. Growing up, the January sales seemed to be the big ones but I’m increasingly finding that November sales are bigger. As I type this, I’m wearing a new dress from Costco that was $49.98 and reduced to $19.98. I’d had my eye on it for a while but put off buying it – until I saw it on sale as part of Singles Day.
Another good reason is to shop for Christmas presents. Of course, you could rush out and buy things on Christmas Eve as many people do, but in this new COVID-Safe environment many people (myself included) want to avoid large crowds. The problem is that it takes time from when you order something to when it is delivered. With more and more people ordering online during COVID – and increased delays – not receiving your goods in time for Christmas is a real risk. Shopping in November, therefore, makes sense.
It’s worth noting that not everyone is as happy with these November sales. Consumerism can reach epic proportions during the sales, and there is a counter movement – Buy Nothing Day – held annually to coincide with Black Friday. Basically, the best sale of all is when you do not buy something you do not really need or want.
In my household, being a frugalista, I’m not especially big on Christmas presents. I put more value on experiences rather than stuff. My kids get modest Christmas presents. My dad, my sister and I contribute to a charity of choice rather than buying ‘stuff’ (often it is the Kippax Uniting Church’s Let’s Give Everyone a Christmas campaign). But at the annual Christmas celebrations with in-laws, I’m not yet at the stage where I feel comfortable saying “hey there, NO PRESENTS from us!” It would come across as kind of stingy. I often give things that are homemade or give homemade plus small bought gifts. But in general, I find it easier just to buy. Over time my hope is that they will understand that our relationship is deeper and more meaningful than a gift once a year (that they may or may not like).
How to make the most of the sales
In our Facebook LIve last night, Pascale had some great tips for making the most of the sales:
- Know what your family/friends want before you go shopping. Pascale has three children. When they say “mummy, I want ….”, she takes a photo of the item and saves it into an album. When she does her shopping during the Black Friday sales, she refers to these photos to find out exactly what her kids want.
- Black Friday is for reconnaissance. Pascale spends Black Friday checking out the deals, comparing them and writing a wishlist. “Generally, stocks are pretty good on the first day of the sales, but they can run out by the Monday,” she said.
- Saturday is for buying. Saturday is when Pascale goes in for the shop. This is the day that she buys what had decided that her family will want for Christmas. Done! Or is it?
- Sunday and Monday are for extra gifts. Often, after the main gifts, Pascale will remember those ‘extra gifts’ she needs for Christmas – you know, the school teachers, cousins, random aunts and uncles that need a little something. The final few days of the sales is for remembering who else needs some Christmas gifts and buying accordingly. “Oh, and a gift for me!,” Pascale laughed. Yep, after her thee children, hubby, parents and family are sorted she buys something for herself. That’s a wrap: shopping for Christmas now done and dusted.
- Maximising cash back. In addition to scoring good deals during the sales, Pascale also maximises her savings by getting additional cash back via the company she founded – Super Rewards. How it works is that you first register with Super Rewards. You visit Super Rewards, then select one of the many retailers on there (e.g. Woolworths, Booktopia, Country Road). When you buy through the retailer, you get the November online sale price PLUS the cash back bonus they offer (e.g. 3% Booktopia,, 5% Country Road noting that the retailers and deals offered change regularly). That money then goes into your nominated super account. Pascale regularly saves around $30 using this option during the sales. Which isn’t bad considering that is extra funds for your retirement you would not already have received!
Pascale has generously provided an offer for readers of The Joyful Frugalista. If you use the code “joyful‘ when you sign up to Super Rewards , you will receive $10 when you make your first purchase.