Best Times to Buy Guide

Posted November 13, 2012 at 2:06 pm January 3, 2013 3:20 pm

CouponCabin

JANUARY

Sales Triggers

  • New Years’ Day – Jan. 1, New Years’ resolutions trigger sales on weight loss and fitness products, as well as household organizing and cleaning supplies.
  • Super Bowl hype
  • National Oatmeal Month
  • National Soup Month

Grocery Sales Items

  • Diet foods: frozen meals (Lean Cuisine, Weight Watchers, Healthy Choice), packaged reduced-fat snacks, vitamins, weight loss supplements.
  • Party supplies: frozen snacks, bagged salads, dips, party/deli platters, organic products (both food and cleaning supplies), cleaning supplies.
  • Holiday stock clearance: chocolate, champagne, appetizer foods (crackers, cheese, olives, etc.), yogurt, pancake mixes, soups, broth, chili.
  • Seasonal: oatmeal, cough/flu/cold medicines.

Retail Sales Items

  • Fitness: sporting goods/exercise equipment, gym memberships (some deals, but lowest prices are in the summer).
  • Holiday clearance: furniture (new models come out in February), linens, bath towels, digital/video cameras, TV’s, computers, electronics in general, small appliances, Christmas décor, gift wrap, toys including Target’s Toy Clearance and the end of the month, New Year’s Party supplies.
  • Off-season promotions: carpet and other flooring, paint, furniture, winter clothes, apparel, accessories and shoes (making way for Spring lines), sneakers, calendars (on clearance), household organizing items (shelves, storage bins, tubs with lids, etc.), gas grills, air conditioners, MP3 players, diet cookbooks.

FEBRUARY

Sales Triggers

  • Chinese New Year – the date varies, but it falls near the end of January, beginning of February
  • Super Bowl – first Sunday in February
  • Valentine’s Day – February 14
  • President’s Day – third Monday in February
  • Mardi Gras, also known as Fat Tuesday, National Pancake Day and Paczki Day – date varies, day before Lent
  • National Canned Food Month
  • National Hot Breakfast Month

Grocery Sale Items

  • Chinese New Year: canned bamboo shoots, canned water chestnuts, frozen egg rolls, stir-fry, canned fruits and vegetables, noodles, soy sauce, ramen, teriyaki sauce.
  • Party foods: frozen pizza, appetizer foods (chips & salsa, soda).
  • Post-Valentine’s Day clearance: candy, ribs, chicken wings, steak, seafood, soda pop.
  • Breakfast: oatmeal, frozen waffles, bacon, sausage, pancake syrup.
  • Seasonal: cough/flu/cold medicines, soup, broth, chili.

Retail Sales Items

  • Before Super Bowl: big screen TV’s, recliners
  • Valentine’s Day clearance: small sales on jewelry
  • Off-season promotions: cameras, motorcycles, winter apparel, humidifiers, air conditioners (good deals all Winter long), gas grills (more sales in September and October).
  • President’s Day sales: mattresses

MARCH

  • St. Patrick’s Day – March 17
  • Spring begins – March 20
  • Spring Break – varies, generally one week in March
  • Lent – six week long Catholic tradition that ends on Easter
  • Easter – varies; falls on a Sunday between late March and mid-April

Grocery Sales Items

  • St. Patrick’s Day: corned beef, gravy, broth, potatoes, mustard, horseradish sauce, cabbage, asparagus.
  • Lent: seafood (for people who give up meat).
  • Easter: candy (Easter-themed), extremely low prices on eggs, baking items including spices, condensed milk, milk, butter, baking chocolate, flour, sugar, powdered sugar.
  • Seasonal: frozen food items (look for deep price cuts and deals at most stores), cold/flu/cough medicines (cold medicine sales will decline).

Retail Sales Items

  • St. Patrick’s Day: St. Patrick’s décor clearance.
  • Spring Break: luggage
  • Off-season promotions: Winter clothing and sports gear including skip equipment, snow shovels, air conditioners, gas grills, China, flatware, kitchenware.

APRIL

Sales Triggers

  • Easter – varies; falls on a Sunday between late March and Mid-April
  • Earth Day – April 22

Grocery Sales Items

  • Easter clearance: ham, dinner rolls, pie crusts and frozen pies, baking/cooking items left from mid-March sales, Easter candy, eggs, food coloring/dye.
  • Earth Day: organic products
  • Seasonal: early strawberry sales, cold cereals.

Retail Sales Items

  • Easter clearance: cookware, Easter décor, fabric.
  • Earth Day: eco-friendly/organic products including health and beauty products, energy-saving light bulbs.
  • Off-season promotions: snow blowers, vacuums, car accessories and parts, laptops.

MAY

Sales Triggers

  • Cinco de Mayo – May 5 celebration of Mexican-American culture
  • Mother’s Day – second Sunday
  • Memorial Day – last Monday
  • National Pet Month
  • National Salad Month
  • National BBQ Month marks the beginning of the BBQ season – these sales peak before and after Memorial Day, Fourth of July and Labor Day

Grocery Sales Items

  • Cinco de Mayo: all Mexican food ingredients including guacamole, avocados, salsa, taco sauce, taco shells, burritos, frozen Mexican food, enchilada sauce, shredded cheese, tortillas.
  • BBQ: hot dogs, hamburger, ribs, steaks, hamburger/hot dog buns, all condiments (ketchup, mustard, BBQ sauce, relish, steak sauce, mayo, sour cream), chips, dips, soda, bottled water, baked beans (first sale of the year), fresh corn, coleslaw & potato salad (around Memorial Day), watermelons, strawberries, juice, popsicles, ice cream and frozen desserts.
  • National Salad Month: salad and salad dressing
  • Warm weather: shaving cream, razors

Retail Sales Items

  • BBQ: grill supplies, disposable plates/cups/utensils, picnic needs, charcoal.
  • National Pet Month: pet food and pet treats.
  • Warm weather: swim diapers, camping supplies, sunscreen, bug spray, citronella candles, allergy medicines, outdoor furniture.
  • Off-season promotions: TV’s, cookware, vacuums, mattresses.

JUNE

Sales Triggers

  • Father’s Day – third Sunday
  • Summer begins – June 20 or 21
  • BBQ season continues
  • Gardening season sales begin
  • National Iced Tea Month

Grocery Sales Items

  • BBQ and Summer: lots of summer produce, BBQ foods still on sale from May
  • National Iced Tea Month: iced tea bags and pre-packaged iced tea
  • National Dairy Month: all dairy products including milk, cheese, cottage cheese, yogurt, sour cream, whipped cream, smoothies

Retail Sales Items

  • Father’s Day: tools, men’s apparel, gym memberships
  • BBQ and Summer: swimwear, allergy medicine, charcoal

JULY

Sales Triggers

  • Fourth of July
  • BBQ season continues
  • Back to School
  • National Ice Cream Month

Grocery Sales Items

  • Back to School: all school supplies
  • BBQ and Summer: razors
  • Target’s Toy Clearance – end of July
  • Off-season promotions: furniture (second best time of the year to buy; new models come out in August).

AUGUST

Sales Triggers

  • Back to School

Grocery Sales Items

  • BBQ and Summer: ice cream, final BBQ food sales before Labor Day.
  • School breakfast and lunch items: cereal, breakfast bars, bread, peanut butter, jelly, tuna fish, lunchmeat, cheese, juice boxes such as Capri Sun, pre-packaged lunch foods, yogurt, snack items, cookies, bottled water.
  • Many Kraft products on sale

Retail Sales Items

  • Back to School: backpacks, socks, undergarments, laptops, office supplies.
  • College dorm: pillows, small appliances, trash cans, shower curtains, bath towel sets, mini fridge sales, office supplies.
  • Off-season promotions: pool supplies, outdoor toys, patio furniture, swimsuits, Summer clothes and shoes, camping and outdoor clearance sales, air conditioners, swing sets, garden supplies.

SEPTEMBER

Sales Triggers

  • Labor Day – first Monday
  • Autumn begins – September 22 or 23
  • Oktoberfest – 16-festival of German food and drink from end of September to beginning of October
  • Back to School
  • National Peach Month

Grocery Sales Items

  • BBQ and Summer: last of the condiment and hot dog/hamburger bun sales at the beginning of the month, ground beef, hot dogs, frozen pies, soda pop, salad dressings.
  • School breakfast and lunch items: cereal, toaster pastries, bread, peanut butter, jelly, juice boxes, cheese, yogurt, chips, cookies, fruit/pudding snacks.
  • Seasonal: canned fruits and vegetables, apples, mushrooms, soups, broth, baking items toward the end of the month.

Retail Sales Items

  • Back to School: lunch bags, school supplies clearance sales, backpack clearance sales, laptops.
  • Off-season promotions: large appliances (refrigerators, freezers, stoves, washers and dryers, etc.), lawn mowers, some gas grill clearances, patio furniture, Glade fragrance items.

OCTOBER

Sales Triggers

  • Oktoberfest – 16-day festival of German food and drink from end of September to beginning of Oktober
  • Halloween – October 31
  • National Seafood Month
  • National Chili Month
  • National Sausage Month

Grocery Sales Items

  • National Seafood Month: fish, shrimp, lobster, etc.
  • Halloween: candy (although November clearance prices will be lower)
  • Seasonal: pumpkins, squash, oatmeal & hot breakfast items like pancakes, apples, cooking and baking items (flour, sugar, condensed milk, yeast, baking powder, baking soda), cold/flu/cough medicine.

Retail Sales Items

  • Halloween: costumes (although November clearance prices will be lower).
  • Seasonal: winter tires, jeans, cookware, Starbucks has a lot of coffee drink deals and freebies starting.
  • Off-season promotions: digital and film photo development, trees, shrubs, bulbs, lawn mowers, gas grills.

NOVEMBER

Sales Triggers

  • Thanksgiving – fourth Thursday
  • Black Friday – day after Thanksgiving
  • Cyber Monday – Monday after Thanksgiving

Grocery Sales Items

  • Thanksgiving: turkey, stuffing mix, canned fruits and vegetables (especially pumpkin and sweet potatoes), dried fruit, cranberry sauce, potatoes, dinner rolls, nuts, spices, cheese, broth, gravy and gravy mixes, coffee, tea, hot cocoa, marshmallows, aluminum foil, Ziploc bags, plastic wrap, parchment paper, frozen pies, baking pans, baking supplies including flour, sugar, yeast, condensed milk, cooking oil, baker’s chocolate, butter pie crusts and filling.

Retail Sales Items

  • Halloween clearance: costumes and décor.
  • Black Friday/Cyber Monday: HDTV’s, laptops and other electronics, housewares.
  • Seasonal: batteries (sales get better in December).
  • Off-season promotions: carpeting/flooring, paint, digital and film photo development.

DECEMBER

Sales Triggers

  • Winter begins – December 21 or 22
  • Christmas – December 25
  • New Years Eve – December 31

Grocery Sales Items

  • Christmas: ham, turkey, butter, cheese, crackers, eggnog (clearance the first week of December), spices, nuts, dried fruit, plain oatmeal, plastic wrap, Reynolds aluminum wrap, parchment paper, sodas, sour cream, party/deli platters, cold cuts, green beans, potatoes, baking items (won’t see deep sales again until Easter) including cookies, frozen pies, cake mix/frosting, refrigerated cookie dough, marshmallows, pie crusts and filling, cream and whipped cream.
  • Seasonal: cough/cold/flu medicines

Retail Sales Items

  • Thanksgiving clearance: sales at the beginning of the month.
  • Christmas: batteries (lowest prices of the year), Amazon toy deals (before and after holidays), digital and film photo development and photo gifts, greeting cards.
  • Christmas clearance: gift wrap and gift wrap accessories, holiday décor, organizing items, holiday overstock, greeting cards, Winter clothes and coats, tools, cookware, computers, electronics, toys, GPS navigators, laptops, tablet sales.
  • Off-season promotions: carpeting and flooring, paint.