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Your guide to the best deals on Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday

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Jefferson Graham offers a countdown to Black Friday deals on Talking Tech.

It’s known as the trifecta of shopping. Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday make for the busiest shopping week of the entire year. For many retailers, fourth-quarter sales could account for up to 40 percent of the yearly total.

Each day caters to a different segment of shoppers, with Black Friday (and Thursday) drawing the masses who are seeking deals; Saturday attracting socially conscious consumers who want to support local retailers; and Monday drawing people who prefer to avoid the crowds but still want a bargain.

Local and national retail watchers are optimistic about the upcoming holiday shopping season. The average American will spend $967 on holiday gifts this year, according to the National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights & Analytics. The survey showed 69 percent of Americans — an estimated 164 million people — are planning to shop or considering shopping during Thanksgiving weekend. The numbers include Cyber Monday in addition to Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Sunday.

More: Black Friday shopping provides opportunity for mother-daughter bonding

5 tips for shopping Black Friday deals

5 tips for getting the most out of Small Business Saturday

5 tips for shopping on Cyber Monday

Black Friday as we know it is now a page in history. No longer is it a one-day event as it has stretched over Thursday and Friday with the sales staggered throughout the two days.

Black Friday traditionally is the day when retailers pull out all the stops. It earned its name because in the past it was the day when retailers finally began to turn a profit for the year. Operating at a loss is being in the red because accountants traditionally used red ink to show losses and black means gains.

Though the event now kicks off just as you’ve gobbled your turkey lunch, Black Friday/Thursday is the the time of year when the savvy shopper can really score big. 

If you’re not into the hustle and bustle of malls and big box stores, Small Business Saturday is the perfect day to shop. On the day after Black Friday, local retailers will roll out the red carpet for their customers.

Small Business Saturday first started in 2010 and is a counterpart to Black Friday and Cyber Monday, which feature big box shops and e-commerce. Small Business Saturday encourages holiday shoppers to patronize businesses that are small and local.

If you’re the type of shopper who prefers to let your fingers to the shopping, Cyber Monday is for you. The day was created by marketing gurus to create hype for online sales.  In 2005, in a push to get people to buy more online, marketers created the term Cyber Monday, with e-retailers noting that their traffic jumped the workday after Thanksgiving. That was also 12 years ago when many households didn’t have high speed internet and resorted to shopping online at work after the sale weekend.

While many consumers will take advantage of deals over Thanksgiving weekend, 31 percent will refrain from shopping that weekend, according to NRF. Of those not planning to participate, 52 percent won’t shop because they do not enjoy the experience and 51 percent say they never shop during Thanksgiving weekend. Of those not shopping, 46 percent said nothing would change their mind but 27 percent said a good sale or discount on an item they want could get them to shop.  

And there will be plenty of good deals and discounts during the busy week ahead.

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