Woman shoping in a cloth shopIt’s the biggest shopping day of the year, filled with great bargains and deals. But for some, Black Friday can seem a bit overwhelming. Especially for the Black Friday novice, the early morning wake-up, the crowds and the competition make the shopping holiday a little too much to take for some. We at Find&Save 100 percent condone Black Friday shopping and want to offer tips to help take the stress out of the day and make it a fun adventure for everyone–even first time Black Friday shoppers.

Do Research, Make a List and Enlist a Team

Look online for Black Friday ads or check out what the newspaper circulars. Expect a lot of Black Friday advertising this year. A September 2013 forecast on Forbes.com predicts a slower than hoped for holiday sales season. To combat this forecast, retailers will try even harder to reach their audience, offering “amazing” door-buster deals to try to sink their hooks into shoppers to come in and stay and shop for more.  Don’t really need, or want, the latest five-dollar toaster? Can’t find any reason to buy another DVD player, or 32 inch TV, no matter how great the deal may be? Don’t fall into the Black Friday trap by buying items you may not need, just because they are at such a great discount. Choose your own must-haves and plan to go to those stores first.

Once you have successfully cut through the hype and narrowed down your list, consider team shopping. A team of four or five working together can break into small teams and do some serious damage towards completing the shopping list. Coordinate your attack via text and conduct your Black Friday operation with military precision.

Make it fun

Don’t forget to have fun, though, it is a holiday weekend after all. In fact, a 2012 article in The Atlantic looks at why so many shoppers enjoy Black Friday, since the deals have a physical—and positive—effect on our brain. So go with the flow, and have fun. Keep it light with and your friends by wearing the same color to spot each other in the crowd, create special team t-shirts or fun holiday sweaters. Be sure to share images of gift ideas and fun finds on your smartphones.

Eat, Drink and be Merry

For those Night Owls who leave the house in the middle of the night to stand in line for a few hours, meet up with your shopping party for a nice breakfast afterward to debrief on the morning’s shopping success – with mimosas of course. Another great plan is to work in a spa visit into the afternoon. What can be better than a nice massage or spa treatment after a Black Friday marathon?

Remember What’s Important

For those able to land the hottest item this year, that’s great; if it was missed this year, it’s not the end of the world. More and more stores are spreading sales out through the entire holiday season. Sometimes, the best deals aren’t even on Black Friday. Life goes on – and there is always the great sales that continue through the weekend and over the next few holiday weeks. Shop On!

Libra White manages communications and is part of a team of shopping experts for Wanderful Media, a startup reimagining the digital circular with Find&Save. Her experience includes writing and communications campaigns for Yahoo! and IBM.