Best Black Friday 2018 deals: Business Bargain Hunter's top picks

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It’s that time of year again.

Your feeds are cluttered with deal posts. Your local stores are inundating you with sale ads. Commercials are hawking wares to festive tunes. It’s the holidays, and with that comes huge mark downs across retail, especially on Black Friday.

Also: Best Black Friday deals 2018 CNET

Though the specific day — and its infamous incidents (trampled customers, fistfights over sale items, etc.) — has lost its singular cachet, the idea of Black Friday as the time to grab the best deals of the year has become firmly entrenched in the mind of the consumer.

To help you wade through the chaos and suss out the real deals, we’ve combed through all the Black Friday ads for you and compiled this rundown of all the basic information you need to do holiday shopping the right way. Think of this as a 101 guide to Black Friday in 2018.

Best Black Friday 2018 deals: Retailers

Amazon

Amazon gave ZDNet a sneak peek at the deals it has planned for its own devices over the next couple weeks. Everything from Fire TV Cube to Echo Show will be on sale.

See the full list of best deals here:

Best Buy

Best Buy will open at 5pm local time on Thanksgiving and stay open until 1am on Friday, Nov. 23. Doors will reopen at 8am on Black Friday. Select deals are already live now through Sunday, Nov. 11. For all other online deals, prices are valid through Saturday, Nov. 24.

See the full list of best deals here:

Costco

Costco will close its doors on the Wednesday evening before Thanksgiving and reopen at 9am local time on Black Friday. Many of Costco’s deals will be available both in stores and online — though some are exclusively online.

See the full list of deals here:

Jet

Jet (only online) posted its Black Friday preview, with sales starting Nov. 21 at 10pm ET.

Newegg

Newegg is online only — it has no retail shops. Some of its deals are already live and are limited-time only. Many other promotions don’t start until Nov. 20, while others begin on Black Friday. We’ve included information about start and end dates where possible.

See the full list of deals here:

Office Depot and Office Max

Office Depot and OfficeMax stores will be closed on Thanksgiving Day, but it will do online sales from 12:01am ET Thanksgiving Day and in-store at 8am local time on Friday, Nov. 23.

Sam’s Club

Sam’s Club is planning a one-day-only for Saturday, Nov. 10.

Staples

For Black Friday, most of the discounted prices below should be available on Thanksgiving Day, and picked up or purchased in-store starting at 7am local time on Friday Nov. 23.

See the full list of deals here:

Target

The retailer’s doors open at 5pm on Thanksgiving and close that night at 1am. Then it will reopen on Black Friday, Nov. 23, at 7am. Online prices are valid through Saturday, Nov. 24.

See the full list of best deals here:

Walmart

Walmart’s store event kicks off at 6pm local time on Thanksgiving, and the online deals start at 10pm ET on Wednesday, Nov. 21. Prices are valid through Friday, Nov. 23 while supplies last.

See the full list of deals here:

Wellbots

See it now: Wellbots Black Friday 2018 sale hub

Wellbots.com is online-only site for all things IoT related. Here are some exclusive Black Friday 2018 deals it is offering ZDNet readers this holiday season:

  • Meural Canvas Digital Art Frame, $50 off – starts Nov. 22
  • Neato D4/D6/D7, $100 off all three – starts Nov. 20
  • Hobot Legee 668 Vacuum-Mop 4 in 1 Robot, $100 off – starts Nov. 21
  • ECOVACS Deebot M88, $150 off – starts Nov. 22
  • ECOVACS OZMO 930, $200 off – starts Nov. 23
  • Coway 300S/400S Wi-Fi Air Purifier, $150 off – starts Nov. 21
  • InMotion Glide 3 Unicycle, $50 off with code ZDNET50 – starts Nov. 17
  • EcoFlow RIVER, 100 off + 8% off with code ZDNET100 – starts Nov. 19
  • Swellpro SplashDrone 3, 10% off with code ZDNETFLY – starts Nov. 21
  • SwellproSpry Drone, 10% off with code ZDNETFLY – starts Nov. 21

Best Black Friday 2018 deals: Vendors

Google Store and Nest

Google and Google-owned Nest have announced a bunch of deals that will extend through Cyber Monday, with some sales starting as early as Nov. 18. You may have noticed but these same discounts will be available from other retailers, including Best Buy, Target, and Walmart.

Lenovo

Lenovo’s Black Friday sale will see hourly sales starting at midnight on Thanksgiving and continuing through 8pm local time on Black Friday.

Best Black Friday 2018 deals: Product categories

The deals below are current as of Nov. 9, and include Target,amazon, and Best Buy.

Windows laptops, Chromebooks, and tablets

See CNET’s guide for the best sales:

iPhone and smartphones

See CNET’s guide for the best sales:

When is Black Friday?

Nov. 23, 2018: As always, Black Friday is the day after Thanksgiving, but that hasn’t stopped retailers from using turkey day to get a head start on the festivities (though not without a backlash from some stores and shoppers).

Also: Best Holiday gifts 2018 CNET

When will the first Black Friday ads appear?

Among computer/electronics retailers, Dell has jumped the gun over the last few years with its ads (both consumer and small business), which “typically leak” right around Nov. 1. Last year some deals from them started almost immediately. You’ll usually see ads from the big boys — Best Buy, Target, and Walmart — made public about a week later.

Also: Best TVs to give for the holidays CNET

Where can I get the best deals on Apple products on Black Friday?

Apple has been notoriously stingy when it comes to any kind of sales on its products in general, and not even the yearly mania around Black Friday gets it to budge much. In fact, the tech giant abandoned discounts at its Apple Stores on Black Friday years ago, only attempting to entice shoppers with free iTunes gift cards with iPhone, iPad, and Mac purchases.

Also: The do’s and don’ts of giving holiday gifts to your coworkers TechRepublic

It’s a tactic that other Apple partners have adopted as well — you’re now much more likely to get a store gift card from Target and Walmart when you purchase an Apple product than any kind of savings from the normal price. You’ll generally need to rely on retailers like MacMall and B&H Photo for actual deals, particularly on MacBooks.

How cheap will laptops be on Black Friday?

Chromebooks helped usher in the era of the $100 PC, forcing Microsoft to respond by slashing the price it charged manufacturers to license Windows in order to stay competitive in the budget market. That seems to be the floor for the cost of a new computer, though you may see one or two deals for $89 systems. Of course, at this price point, you are getting the barest of specs — no HD screen, 2GB of RAM, a minimalamount of built-in storage, a slower processor — that can handle Internet browsing and basic productivity tasks.

Also: Photos: Cool gifts for bosses to buy for employees TechRepublic

For an additional $100 to $200, you should be able to locate a deal on a more powerful computer with a few better specs that won’t require as many compromises.

How will I know if I got a good deal on Black Friday?

There definitely will be a handful of legitimately great prices on items during this extended shopping period, often as a “doorbuster” special that may be available in limited quantities or for a short window of time. But despite retailers’ promises to the contrary, Black Friday prices aren’t always the best of the year. In fact, product review site Wirecutter recently pointed out that of the more than 78,000 deals it tracked for Black Friday 2017, only about 450 were worth highlighting.

A big reason for that can be found if you look closely at how the percentage off figures trumpeted in Black Friday ads are calculated. You may notice that stores use the original or list price as the starting point, but that often isn’t the price they are currently using to sell a product. For instance, a desktop PC may have an original price of $399, so its $249 Black Friday sale price looks like a pretty significant discount. However, if that desktop is being sold for $279 in the weeks running up to holiday shopping, it’s a lot less impressive.

Also: A guide to tech and non-tech holiday gifts to buy online TechRepublic

This tactic is fairly widespread, so you need to do your homework before succumbing to Black Friday fever. We can help you determine the real deals and not-so-real ones as we report on the major tech retailers’ ads as they are leaked. Make sure to come back to ZDNet often during the coming weeks to find out what the best sales will be for Black Friday 2018.


For more great deals on devices, gadgetry, and technology for your enterprise, business, or home office, see ZDNet’s Business Bargain Hunter blog. Affiliate disclosure: ZDNet earns commission from the products and services featured on this page.

Previous and related coverage:

Great gifts: 5 best TV streaming devices of 2018

Yes, you can buy a TV with streaming, but internet TV streaming devices are still a great deal. Here are this year’s best to consider for your viewing pleasure.

Work and play: Our picks for the holiday’s best tech gifts

In work and play, do you always give it your best? Then you probably want to give the best gifts, too, right? We’ve got your covered.

Best gifts: 20 luxury gadgets for the billionaire who has everything

Money may not be able to buy you happiness — but it certainly can provide you with some crazy technology and gadgets. Here are some of our favorite luxury gifts.

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