The Saturday before Christmas is traditionally the busiest for the malls, with crowds that rival Black Friday and shoppers even more driven to buy because, well heck, they're about out of time. But it might be a tad bit easier to find a parking spot this weekend—a new National Retail Federation survey finds nearly half of holiday shoppers plan to finish what shopping they have left online.
Today, Dec. 18, is bound to be a big one for online shopping—it's Free Shipping Day, when more than 900 retailers pledge to waive shipping fees on Internet orders with guaranteed delivery by Christmas. Then again, isn't that every day this promotional holiday season? One of the reasons shoppers are wrapping up their gift buying earlier is the deals have been so good, there's no reason to wait. Still, there's always that nagging concern that today's good deal will become tomorrow's great deal.
Don't lose sleep, or time hitting "refresh" every hour. Try the new online tool TrackIf.com, developed by Twin Cities entrepreneur Doug Berg. Available on the web and as an app, TrackIf helps shoppers create sharable wish lists, and lets them know when their desired items change in price.
TrackIf is also studying industry patterns to help shoppers figure out the best time to buy. For example, Berg says, gaming systems tend to go on sale during the week; computers and laptops on the weekend. So far this season, televisions have fluctuated most in price. The prices least likely to budge are on toys and tablets.
When it comes to fashion prices, the brands TrackIf users are watching closest are UGG Australia, North Face, Victoria's Secret, Kate Spade and Tory Burch.