The day after Thanksgiving officially marks the start of the holiday shopping season. To prepare you for the ultimate day of great shopping deals, coupons and more, we’ve rounded up our best Black Friday shopping tips so it’s your most successful one yet.

First, do your research. Look for Black Friday in-store specials in your local paper, or check out Black Friday-focused websites like or to see where you can find the best deals for the gifts you’re shopping for.

Sign up for e-mail alerts. Many retailers will use e-mail alerts to encourage store loyalty. Sign up to receive special coupons or discounts.

Create a budget for yourself. Decide how much you want to spend and resist impulse buying in the store, especially if you don’t know how good a deal you’re really getting.

Compare prices. Once you’ve done your research, check online or in the newspaper for a little comparison shopping. You may find that another store or online retailer is offering the same product for a better price.

Check return policies. That doorbuster deal may be awesome but if it’s final sale and you have second thoughts, you’ll be stuck. Make sure you find out any re-stocking fees or return deadlines before you hand over your credit card.

Dress comfortable. Bring a big bag to carry all your purchases so you don’t get trampled by other shoppers. Also, wear comfortable shoes in case you have to do a lot of walking.

Good luck this Black Friday!